Marx Notes.docx

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Department
Anthropology
Course
ANTH 105g
Professor
Nicholas Bartlett
Semester
Fall

Description
Alexa Povlitz Marx Notes  Marx’s project: to make capitalism seem strange to us o Open up the possibility of other economic forms, other ways of organizing society  “Capitalism” o Marx gave this term its current meaning  He was interested in how we organize society  Goals and how we live our lives  How we interact with each other (important to Marx)  How we labor and how we consume  Can be compared to “pre-capitalist” economic activity o Peasant societies, feudal, “tribal” and socialism  A commodity is any good or service produced by human labor and offered as a product for general sale on the market o Peasants produce too much, and give to government (not selling to general public, only giving to feudal lords) o Peasants’ distribution of resources to feudal lords isn’t a commodity  B/c they’re not offered as a product for general sale on the market  Use-value o An item’s value comes from its function, or how people use it  Its “qualitative” properties o “The utility of a thing (i.e. that it is useful) makes it a use-value.” (303)  Exchange-value o An abstraction of value, measured via its equivalence to something else o “As use-values, commodities are of different qualities, but as exchange values they are merely different quantities, and consequently do not contain an atom of use value.” (305) o Quantitative value  Bartering is not capitalism, because prices are not set, they are relative o Use-value is brought up more than exchange-value o Individuals set “prices”  Money is an intermediary  Market sets price (not individuals)  In a non-capitalist society, you use commodities to get money, to then buy another commodity o C – M –C  In a c
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