Re: [xmca] Monism Is Not Reductionist

From: Andy Blunden (
Date: Sun Mar 11 2007 - 18:59:20 PST

Yes, sorry, I meant "Martin". :-)
I am not claiming that there is a "correlation" between a concept and a
thing. e.g. as you say, being a commodity does not depend on a participant
in exchange knowing the concept "commodity". Such a judgment is possible
from an observer perspective without reference to the participant's theory
of what they are doing.
But I am saying that the basis for a concept is the ideality involved in
the activity. You can't recognise a commodity by its physical properties.
Some reference to mind is necessary."Commodity" does not arise as a concept
until the practice of exchanging products reaches a certain level of
development, which includes products being produced for exchanged, i.e., as
ideals. It is impossible to identify a thing as a commodity outside of
consideration of the consciousness of the participants.
For example, a thing produced *for the purpose of meeting the producer's
needs by exchanging it for another person's product* is a commodity only
because of the separation of the producer's needs from the producer's
labour, and the existence of a relation with other producers such that
someone else satisfies the person's needs, and each sees the other as a
means to their own ends. This situation is sustainable only through forms
of consciousness. It can't happen without appropriate orientation of
people's psyches.
And in fact if this situation were contrived independently of the
consciousness of the participants (e.g., organisation of prison labour),
then I would say that the products are not commodities, even though the
movement of matter is the same.
So "a commodity is a commodity, whether or not I recognize this in my
thinking" but not for example if you intended to consume it yourself, but
someone exchanged it for something else when you were out of the room, or
you intended to exchange it, but no-one else wanted it.
At 07:42 PM 11/03/2007 -0600, you wrote:
>And Andy, when you say 'David,' I presume you mean Martin? :)
>But you're not saying, are you, that our thinking necessarily 'correlates'
>with the concepts formed in our activity? I mean, a commodity is a
>commodity, whether or not I recognize this in my thinking.
>On 3/11/07 6:24 PM, "Andy Blunden" <> wrote:
> > And David, when you say 'practice', I presume you mean purposive activity,
> > as opposed to simply material action, such as digestion. Material actions
> > which are not 'practical' in this sense are not a relevantly necessary
> > substrate of concepts. It is only practice which is part of 'mind' which is
> > the relevant necessary substrate of concepts.Things that we do that have no
> > correlate in our thinking, such as the use of meaningful artefacts, are not
> > the basis for concepts.
> > Andy
> > At 06:03 PM 11/03/2007 -0600, you wrote:
> >> David,
> >> So when Andy writes 'If you mean that concepts do not exist other than in
> >> connection with human minds, then I agree,' I think what he *ought* to
> >> have said, perhaps what he meant to say, was that concepts do not exist
> >> other than in connection with human *practices*. I think wed agree that a
> >> 'commodity' exists in the social world, not merely in a person's head. The
> >> 'commodity form' is defined, created, by social practices, not in and by
> >> individual minds.
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > xmca mailing list
> >
> >
>xmca mailing list

Andy Blunden. The Subject -

xmca mailing list

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Sun Apr 01 2007 - 01:00:10 PST