I wonder if you can clear up a couple of problems I have with the Grundrisse.

Both appear just after the heading “Absolute and Relative Surplus Value”.

The first is this:

“If a half of a working day objectifies itself in one bushel of wheat, and if this is the worker’s price, then the surplus labour can only produce 2 bushels of wheat. Thus 2 bushels of wheat [is] the value of one working day,….”

One working day certainly produces two bushels but surely only ONE of those bushels counts as the product of surplus labour? (Otherwise ALL that the worker produces is the product of surplus labour!)

The second is this:

“Now, if the force of production were to double also in gold production, so that, if 13s. were the product of half a working day and this half a day were the necessary labour before; now 1/4 [working day] produces 52s. …”

If the force of production were to double and if previously half a working day produces 13s then, after the doubling, a quarter of a day would produce what a half day would previously produce i.e. 13s. But, seemingly, it produces 52s i.e. the production has increased by a factor of 8!

Would you explain how Marx arrives at these strange figures?

]]>I imagine Marx rather liked the fact that he was able to quote a capitalist blithely talking about making workers work over 7 days a week.

]]>“.…the average work for the last 18 months has been at the very least 7 days, 5 hours, or 78 1/2 hours a week”

What on Earth does Marx mean by “7 days, 5 hours”? It can’t be an average for a week since it is clearly more than a week. Does he mean the 7 days and 5 hours to be the total time which would be equal to 173 hours? But he can’t mean a total of 173 hours for the entire 18 months. That would be a relaxing job! Does the figure refer to a monthly average? But that would come out at a little over 40 hours a week which would be just like a modern job.

Can anyone help?

]]>(3) would Britney’s “If U Seek Amy?” fit?

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