Boise DSA

Democratic Socialists of America

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DSA Night School: Marx’s Wage Labour & Capital
Mar 7, 2020

Two of Marx’s greatest strengths:

  1. Abstraction of the behavior of society
  2. An internal critique of capitalism, accepting its defenders’ assumptions

Wage Labour and Capital builds on Adam Smith’s labor theory of value. Adam Smith, along with his fellow economists of the time, that the exchange value of a commodity is significantly determined by the cost of producing it. Smith assumed the worker sells his or her labor power as a commodity to the capitalist of his or her own free will. Marx points out this exchange hides the truth: the workers perish if they cannot find employment. Workers do not sell their labor power out of free will. They sell it in order to afford the things they must have, and hopefully there is enough left over for them to exercise their free will.

One may argue this is hyperbole, but research has shown in numerous studies that unemployment is tied to higher mortality rates. Join us as we discuss how labor power is a commodity unlike any other commodity.

When: Tuesday, April 28, 2020 @ 6:30 - 8:00 PM

Where: Zoom!

Text (optional): Wage Labour and Capital

Marx has several different writing styles. This book is dry. It often reads like an economics textbook. For this reason I am providing an abridged version, as well as an audio recording of the entire book. If you have the patience, reading some is helpful, though not required. We will cover the central argument.

(Recommended) Abridged, from Robert C. Tucker’s The Marx-Engels Reader:

If you want, feel free to read the entire book:

An audio recording of the entire book:

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