(with Answers)

Answer one question from each part.

Part I: Value and Money

1. a. What is the Marxian theory of money that emerges from the first three or four parts of Capital Volume I? Explain how this theory is a theory of social power and of domination.

b. What has to happen to convert money into capital? How did this occur during the period of primitive accumulation?

c. How can and does the working class wield money against capital? How does this occur within education?

Part II: The Reproduction of Labor-Power

2. Explain the difference between labor and labor power. What is the relationship between work performed in the consumption of the means of subsistence and the value of labor-power? What is the relationship between this work and that done in the factory for the capitalist?

3. Discuss the difference between schooling as a sphere of the reproduction of labor power and activities which are moments of self-valorization. Explain the theoretical difference and give examples of how what appear to be self-valorizing activities may actually be just reproducing labor power. Also give examples of how activities which normally reproduce labor power might be turned into those of self-valorization.

Part III: The Labor Process

4. Discuss the relationship between Marx's analysis of the labor process and his analysis of valorization. In what way might his analysis of the labor process be interpreted as one of "self-valorization"? To the degree that this were so, does his analysis exhaust the theoretical discussion of "self-valorization"? Give examples, from both the sphere of production and the sphere of reproduction, (as well as outside both) to illustrate your discussion.

5. In what way might "alienation" be seen as the working class perspective on valorization? Discuss this using all the aspects of alienation which Marx analyses. Then discuss how we might conceive of the capitalist perspective on "self-valorization" using a similar, but inverse, shift in perspective.

Part IV: Absolute Surplus Value

6. a. In what sense is absolute surplus value a "strategy"? What has been the historical pattern of struggle over absolute surplus value from the periods covered by Marx's analysis to today? (Include here the struggle in reproduction as well as in production.)

b. If capital didn't invent surplus labor, what did it invent? How does the discussion of section 2 of chapter 10 add to that of section 2 of chapter 7?

c. If there is still a surplus generated in post-capitalist society, by what criteria can we distinguish it from the surplus (surplus labor, surplus value) in capitalist society?

7. A capitalist might say "The reduction in the length of the working day over the past century or so has been beneficial for all parties involved; the owners of the means of production benefit because during the 8 hour day the worker is more productive and efficient --each labor hour is more productive and thus industry is more efficient; the workers benefit because they have more leisure time." Give a Marxist response to this argument both theoretical and historical, and in the process discuss the relationship between the decline in "absolute" surplus labor extracted in the waged job, and what might be viewed as "surplus labor" in the home and in other unwaged spheres of life.

Part V: Relative Surplus Value

8. In Marx's analysis of relative surplus value, especially as it is developed in his discussion of machinery and modern industry, the fundamental motivation derives from the class struggle. Explain how relative surplus works at the aggregate level and at the micro level of the firm and the relation between the two levels. What kinds of struggles have provoked such a response from corporate capitalists?

9. Within Marx's discussion of relative surplus value in part IV there is considerable analysis of the division of labor (at several levels). How is his discussion related to his distinction between the formal and real subordination of labor to capital? Which such divisions may be related to Marx's discussion of the technical, value and organic compositions of capital? Explain what the concepts of class composition, political recomposition and decomposition add to the analysis. How can such analysis be extended to the sphere of reproduction?