Re: general, particular Holzkamp, Engeström

From: Jay Lemke (
Date: Wed Oct 13 2004 - 14:35:55 PDT

An interesting further step in the argument re labor-of-learning in
schools, from the Grundrisse citation below: the full value of the product
of labor-of-learning is only achieved when it is exchanged, when it is
admitted to the web of exchange.

though it also proposes another mode of educational analysis: that it is
when we teach others what we have learned that we complete our
learning-as-labor, our knowledge-as-product, for only then is it in the
final form that is fit for consumption by others. But we don't arrange
schools so students can do this either ...


At 02:24 PM 10/13/2004 -0700, you wrote:
>Hi Steve,
>here a quote from the EXCHANGE AND PRODUCTION section of GRUNDRISSE:
>It is clear, firstly, that the exchange of activities and abilities which
>takes place within production itself belongs directly to production and
>essentially constitutes it. The same holds, secondly, for the exchange of
>products, in so far as that exchange is the means of finishing the product
>and making it fit for direct consumption.
>You see, exchange is a means of finishing the product...
>On 13-Oct-04, at 1:14 PM, Steve Gabosch wrote:
>>Michael, I would like to please return to the post you opened this thread
>>with, where you discuss Engeström and Marx. Your statement that "Marx
>>clearly says that all activity implies the exchange situation ..."
>>perplexes me. I found the p88 quote you mention below - its on p84 of
>>the Progress MECW volume 35 I have - but I am still working on
>>understanding what you mean by "the exchange situation" - and why you say
>>Marx claims that "all activity" implies it. So far I am not seeing this
>>in Marx. Certainly, Marx explains that all exchange originates in the
>>creation of commodities through labor activity. In this sense, the
>>opposite idea can be attributed to Marx - that all exchange implies the
>>labor activity situation - but I am not grasping what you actually say,
>>that all activity implies the exchange situation.
>>- Steve
>>At 08:45 AM 10/13/2004 -0700, you wrote:
>>I am referring to chapter 1 in the German edition--
>>Marx says :
>>(p.55) that production for your own needs produces use-value but not
>>(p.57) in the use-value of each commodity there is a certain purposeful
>>activity or useful labor
>>(p.61) All labor ... produces value (of commodity)
>>(p.88) The two-fold social character of the labour of the individual
>>appears to him, when reflected in his brain, only under those forms which
>>are impressed upon that labour in every-day practice by the exchange of
>>products. In this way, the character that his own labour possesses of
>>being socially useful takes the form of the condition, that the product
>>must be not only useful, but useful for others,
>>((THis translation was taken from the English version on
>>The product of labor must be useful, importantly, for others...
>>So labor already implies the usefulness of the product for others... Marx
>>is not interested in production for my own needs, like my labor of
>>running an organic garden and eating my own vegetables year round.
>>On a final note, the English translation is atrocious. Marx wanted a
>>readable work, and was proud that commentators described the Kapital as
>>readable, even by non-academics. The English translation does not, in my
>>view, do justice to the original, and leaves out many of the important
>>shades of meaning... tradutore traditore
>>On 13-Oct-04, at 1:09 AM, Steve Gabosch wrote:
>>Michael, where does Marx say this?
>>"Marx clearly says that all activity implies the exchange situation ..."
>>~ Steve

Jay Lemke
Educational Studies
University of Michigan
610 East University
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1259

Ph: 734-763-9276
Fax: 734-936-1606

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