What makes a critic worth considering

Juergen Albohn: Theory without revolutionary practice is opium for the people
- A critique of value critique -

Criticism of value continues to enjoy great popularity in left-wing contexts. Even after the exclusion of their most prominent representative Robert Kurz from the crisis project, an expansion or doubling of the importance of this Marxist school of thought is to be expected, since the exclusion of Robert Kurz, Roswitha Scholz and others, according to insider circles, primarily with internal personal ones Quarreling has to do with content-related differences within the crisis group. Reason enough to take a critical look at the fundamental characteristics and basic categories of this discourse.

The present essay tries to examine the fundamental work of the Nuremberg Krisis Group, which began its work in 1986 as the editor of the journal “Marxist Critique”, but also in one with the ISF (Initiative Socialist Forum) Freiburg, to show that central Theoretical contents of the specific Marx interpretation of this critique of value have no practical implication, nor theoretically block the process of emancipatory practice with regard to the contradictory relationship between capital and labor.


The Marxian category of value, as it was formulated in connection with Ricardo, must be understood as one that does not begin to postulate as superhistorical. The value created in the capitalist production process is only realized in exchange. Values ​​become comparable through the abstract human work that goes into them. In this sense, capitalism is not only an immense accumulation of goods but also of exchange processes. The exchange of values ​​is the omnipresent happening in the capitalist world and the specific character that all objects assume, namely to be commodities and values, also permeates the general quality of forms of relationship between individuals. According to their structure, these (human relationships) are also transformed into goods-like or destroyed and newly formed. All things within capitalist relationships have a fetish character, the fetish character of value or goods. The exchange of values ​​can ultimately be viewed as a special form of interaction between individuals that constitutes the space of bourgeois-capitalist society. Thus the value, as it is presented in the fetish chapter (chap. 1.4 in MEW23, Marx, 1988, pp. 85-98), represents something similar to the power or the concept of power in Foucault, as it is, for example, in “Microphysics of Power ”(Foucault, 1976, p. 114). This connection, or rather the process of understanding this connection, to which Marx dedicates an entire subchapter, no matter how easily it can be summed up in short sentences, inspires the apologists and adepts of value criticism. Delighted to have accomplished this abstraction, the fact of the specific conditionality, the nature of the capitalist socialized space is presented as the central category and postulated as the actual core of the essence of capitalism, which has to be overcome. In this context one likes to speak of an “unexplored” social context. This happens like a prayer wheel in almost every article, interview and abstract that reaches us from Nuremberg (Krisis) and elsewhere on this topic (see, for example, Editorial - Marxist Critique, 1988, p. 6; Stahlmann, 1988, p. 38-39 ; Kurz, 1989, p. 13). In this context, Ernst Lohoff speaks of the beauty of value form analysis (Lohoff, 1988, p. 63).

The fact that this social space, which is constituted by value, is directed, i.e. shows a direction of flow from those who do not have the means of production (worker) to the owner of the means of production (capitalist), i.e. the fact that there are classes, is viewed as secondary or secondary by value criticism. Surface phenomena of capitalist socialization presented or optionally denounced as sociologism (see Tomazky, 1989, p. 88; Kurz, 1989, p. 10, p. 12).

Robert Kurz and others, whether social democrat, organized communist or worker, classify and lament this form of socialization on the basis of its dichotomization in classes through class struggle, and whoever does not only want to philosophize and complain about socialization in the form of values ​​on Sundays, as an eternally yesterday's labor movement Marxist stamped.

Value-based socialization and subjectless rule

We do not need to argue with the value critics about criticism, failure and integration of the classic lines of the workers' movement. There is broad consensus here. In this respect, the criticism of the crisis group of the classic labor movement Marxism, of the politics of the II. And III. International, the classic workers' parties, little to complain about. The conception of the theory as a whole becomes nonsensical, however, if it theoretically negates the autonomous proper movement of the class, to which, for example, operaism (cf. Rinaudo, 1988, p. 37) referred.

Anyone who walks through the forest of value criticism with Robert Kurz, Ernst Lohoff and their followers does not notice the movement of the class and that is no coincidence. It is precisely this movement of the class or, in its generalized conception of the multitude (Negri), that drives capital permanently into crisis, from which capital has to evade again and again at the moment of crisis. Also the transition from Manchester capitalism to the welfare state at the end of the 19th century. or from Fordism to Post-Fordism, must be understood in this regard. The welfare state is primarily as reaction of capital to understand the social struggles in order to “recapture and productively lock up the workers” (Bonefeld, 2004, p. 11). The transition from Fordism with Tayloristic production processes to Post-Fordism and the Toyotistic organization of production that has become established with it is to be understood in this regard. In addition to the expansion of added value to all (social) skills and social competencies of the workers, it is also about breaking up an existing political composition of the class and integrating it in a new or modernized way under changed working conditions.

The criticism of value, more precisely the crisis (until 1989 “Marxist criticism”) can only do that in this long course of class struggles and their integration final Recognize the disqualification of class struggles and only decipher them in the sense of a stabilizing modernization and generalization of the system (cf. Lohoff, 1996, p. 58). Robert Kurz asserts: "Thus the class struggle can only be the immanent form movement of the capital relation, but not the movement to abolish the capital relation" (Kurz, 1996, p. 45). This means precisely the capital ratio, the death knell of which the Krisis Group has seen ringing for some time. The crisis group is far from considering that this state of the system was reached through social struggles in general and through class struggles in particular. In the texts of the crisis group one can only read of objective tendencies of the capitalist crisis. These tendencies are in principle already summarized in the Marxian terms of over-accumulation and the tendency of the rate of profit to fall (see e.g. Kurz, 1989b, p. 12). In addition there is the ascension of money diagnosed in Krisis16 / 17 (Kurz, 1995, p. 21), i. H. the decoupling of (in the bourgeois economic sense) “added value” from the real exploitation of human labor, which allows the imaginary part of money and thus also its face value (= price) to slide into ever more dizzying heights. In principle, this fact is nothing new, Christian Marazzi drew attention to the tendency towards decoupling between real exploitation and money as early as the 1970s, in the article: “The money in the world crisis” (Marazzi, 1977, p. 241). All of these empirical facts, treated by the critique of value as “objective tendencies” of capitalism, are not least an expression of the social struggle situation in the antagonism between capital and labor.

Whereas the regulation school, in its combination of Keynesianism and Marxism in the run through the accumulation regimes, speaks of a process of discovery in which social struggles are also considered, the critique of values ​​reduces the dynamics of capitalism to the concept of the “automatic subject”. The attempt is made to find a theory of capitalism outside of the real movements of the class, quasi from a bird's eye view, which, according to Karl Korsch (Marxism and Philosophy, 1923), would be “simple idealistic metaphysics”.

Even if the Freiburg ISF does not like the Krisis group and accuses Robert Kurz of serious “Marxism-Leninism, only without a revolutionary subject” (Bruhn, 2004, p. 3), at this point they are blowing the same horn of hypostasis of capitalism as “ automatic subject ”(cf. Behre, 2001). The apparent self-course in the development, expansion and reproduction of the capital relation, characterized by Marx himself at one point as “automatic subject” (Marx, 1988, p. 169), can only function in this sense through the permanent ability of capital, the worker or to couple and integrate the working class, regardless of whether through violence and coercion, ideology or participation. The process of capitalist exploitation and socialization may only appear to us to be autopoietic. The mechanisms of ideology and participation or the working class's trust in participation work so perfectly that they are deeply anchored in the consciousness of the workers in the course of the national corporatist class struggle. In addition, there is the competitive relationship not only between the workers, but also between the capitalists. If punished for their downfall, these must permanently renew (reinvestment) and modernize it in order to reproduce the capital relationship against the background of the concrete fighting situation between capital and labor, but also in differentiation and competition with one another. It is certainly legitimate to speak of capitalist socialization on the basis of these relationships, the term “automatic subject” almost imposes itself, however, if misunderstood and hypostatized, it does not bring the project of emancipation any further. The real existing critique of value fetishizes the concept of the “automatic subject” and sees practically only one subject, capital itself. Before the ruins of the reformist integrated and Stalinist burned class struggle, value criticism flees into a world of ideas that sees social antagonism, the existence of classes only as a secondary phenomenon, as the surface of capitalist socialization, and theoretically discards all related theory as a “class struggle fetish” (cf. Kurz, 1989, p. 10). Such a Marxism “does not even notice that with such a diction it is completely ignoring a critique of the fundamental categories of capital” (Kurz, 1989, p. 11). And for the critique of value, this fundamental category is value in itself and nothing more. The terms added value, class and subject no longer play a role in this eccentric metric. In this way, the value actually becomes exactly what Robert Kurz accuses the post-structuralists and their conceptions of power (Foucault) and text (Derrida), namely the draft of an “ether theory” (Kurz, 2002, p. 92). As tirelessly the value critique emphasizes the historically specific, ie not ontological form determination of the value, in its overall theoretical design no moment is implied that could stop the value society except that capital (the only subject that still sees the value critique) swallows itself “in itself himself". What value criticism does not do, and therefore cannot do at all: to make the movements of the class and not only of the class, but of the subjects in general, visible in moments of crisis in the system.

In this sense, for Joachim Bruhns from the ISF, the matter is clear: capitalism “will fail, but because of itself, because of its internal, logical and historical impossibility” (Bruhn, 1995, p. 9). Then one would only have to continue working in the meantime and wait until the capital ratio somehow evaporates on its own: Revolution as an (intellectual) Pentecostal experience.

In order to legitimize this “revolutionary” attentism, the fundamentally structuralist representation of value is used, as Marx explains it in the fetish chapter (Capital Vol. 1 Marx, 1988, pp. 85-98). The supposed superficiality of the class relationship is derived from it and an attempt is made to justify it. As already mentioned at the beginning, this is rolled out from article to article (e.g. Editorial-Marxist Critique, 1988, p. 6; Stahlmann, 1988, p. 38-39; Kurz, 1989, p. 13) with never getting tired of industriousness in the end it is the same as a fetishization of the fetish chapter in Marx. The concept of value as a social mediation context is hypostatized, the concept of value as an analytical category that can and wants to make exploitation visible (it is not for nothing that Marx takes a few chapters in Capital to define the value of labor in this way) is on the reverse its dropped. At the same time as the concept of exploitation, that of the class is then practically disposed of. In place of the subjects who make history, capitalism is set as an automatic subject (Kurz, 1990, p. 105; Lohoff, 1990, p. 136, 147) (cf. also ISF, 2000, p. 20). Even if the crisis group and the value critics in general are certainly concerned with overcoming capitalism, the theory they are developing is one theory of Capital.

Value and abstract work

The value critics have just interpreted the value in different ways, but it depends ...

Joachim Bruhns from the ISF in Freiburg goes “further” in this regard. In short, I also “don't know what that 'value' should be, what that should mean: 'abstract work' and 'automatic subject' [...] because Marx did not know that, and because one did not know it at all can know. (sic!) Any talk of value that grasps its object as a theoretical object and thus brings it to definitions is anti-critical and therefore ideology according to Marx ”(Bruhn, 2004, p. 4,7).

Here - as far as the concept of value is concerned - a Marxian category, which in the sense of scientific determinateness cannot be precisely grasped in a positivist way, not measurable, is dropped and in turn is dissolved into a positivist-philosophical nirvana. The Freiburg ISF, referred to by Lohoff / Kurz as the “caretaker of critical theory” (Lohoff, 1998), shows us how to use the ticket of critical theory in the praiseworthy attitude to practice criticism as a normative concept (cf. ISF, 2000, pp. 38-39), abandons the standpoint of maximum critical force in relation to the concrete material (dominant) relationships. The Frankfurt “Grandhotel Abgrund” (Lukacs) is shrinking in terms of Marxism and “value criticism” to the Freiburg “Pension Sackgasse”.

In the scientifically specified dilution of the Marxian terms value and abstract work, however, the crisis and the ISF are not alone. Michael Heinrich, who certainly does not belong to the real circle of value criticism, comes in this regard with the concept of value or the concept of abstract work (which constitutes value) in his efforts with the term “non-substantialist- Substance ”(Heinrich, 2001) to a standstill. A single look into the world of goods today reveals that abstract work and value are - as concrete as anything - substance! Despite the way in which the commodity is represented and the value as a social relationship (Marx, 1988, pp. 85-98; cf. also Marx, 1987, pp. 30-31), Marx describes the value of commodities as follows: “Let us consider now the residual of the labor products. Nothing is left of them but the same ghostly objectivity, a mere jelly of indiscriminate human labor, i.e. the expenditure of human labor regardless of the form in which it is used. These things only show that human labor is expended in their production, human labor is accumulated. As crystals of this common social substance they are values ​​- commodity values ​​”(Marx, 1988, p. 52; cf. also Marx, 1987, p. 4).

The magazine too Floor plans from Vienna, which is by no means part of the environment of value criticism and writes in the editorial of the 1st edition "Ultimately, however, all contributions in the floor plans should serve to promote reflection on the social and historical development with a view to overcoming it in an emancipatory way ” (Editorial-Grundrisse, 2002, p. 3) and Michael Heinrich gratefully criticized the fact that he uses his "structural [n] method [(cf. Heinrich, 1999, p. 208ff)], [ ...] improve scientific precision ”, but delete or keep silent about the element of practice in favor of this scientific approach (Birkner, 2002, p. 38), falls into the same trap with regard to the concept of value. In the article about abstract work Karl Reitter writes: “I wanted to show that some formulations, especially the physiological definition of abstract work, the exertion of muscles, nerves and brains, must lead to nonsensical and contradicting consequences. In short, this misinterpretation liquidates the deep historicity of Marx's thought, it blurs the historical peculiarities of social relations in capitalism and ascribes to labor itself the almost magical ability to produce 'value'. This obstructs the way to recognize a social relationship in terms of value and also to be able to criticize ”(Reitter, 2002, p. 16). After all, one has to credit the floor plans from Vienna as a whole because they recognized the problem of the lack of practical implication of this theory of value in the discussion with Michael Heinrich. The Krisis Group is still a long way from that. Ernst Lohoff (Krisis) accuses the classical Marxists of precisely this undialectical attitude, which is typical of value criticism, of being in love “with the dissolution of value into human labor” and thus systematically blocking the way to value form analysis (Lohoff, 1988, p. 63). In complete coherence with this, the ISF notes that “speaking of abstract work as creating value through the expenditure of energy [is] misleading, because it determines neither the form nor the size of the value of a commodity” (ISF, 2000, p. 34) and is instead to understand “value as the epitome of the mediation of social totality” (ISF, 2000, p. 33).

In view of this attitude, which is one-sidedly aimed at the property of value that forms social structures, the question arises whether it can actually be so difficult for people who actually know what dialectic means to think dualistically and at the same time behind the abstraction ability of the positivistic sciences - for example in physics - to fall behind at the beginning of the 20th century. It is a truism of quantum theory these days that whether electrons or light, both can be waves or particles. There are countless experiments and natural phenomena that can be correctly described in the particle image, and just as countless those that can be correctly described in the wave image. To this day, this contradiction cannot be resolved dialectically without any natural scientist being bothered by it. So why should the value (also as a historically-specific, non-ontological category) not be a thing that can be understood dualistically, in which human labor is accumulated and at the same time represent a form that constitutes the space of capitalist society. It is precisely the oscillations in the Marxian way of portraying value that cannot be dismissed as an attempt to conceptually mediate between these poles without dropping one or the other aspect. The term “abstract work” with all its implications is an expression of Marx's theoretical efforts to bring this stereophony down to a conceptual denominator.

The laughing thirds of this abbreviated “critique of value” and this “science of value” are the bourgeois economists and their ideology with their reified categories such as “wages” and “profit”, which one would think With the terms v (variable capital) and m (surplus value) should be disavowed. Despite the complexity of Marx's argument, a central concern of his work in the “Critique of the Bourgeois Economy” in the capital relation was to make exploitation as an analytical category, going beyond the moral, visible and nameable.

Use value and exchange value dichotomy and social practice

Another problem that the “critique of value” creates is the apodictic setting of the separation between use value and exchange value. Of course, these categories indicated by Marx not only make sense with regard to the historical emergence of capitalist production relations, but ultimately it is about the return of the economy to society (Polanyi) and thus about the abolition of capitalist and in this sense commodity-shaped socialization. The apodictic separation of these ultimately also related forms of exchange value and use value (there is no exchange value without use value) is related to the practice of appropriating the means of production and taking over production in workers' self-management within the conditions of capitalist socialization inevitably must begin, but theoretically in the way (cf. Kurz, 1986; Lohoff, 1988, pp. 59-65). Here is an example:

Hundreds of factories were occupied in Argentina and Brazil in 2003/2004. The fact of producing within a capitalist overall environment in workers' self-management, which in this regard can also mean self-exploitation, especially via the sphere of mediation and the unequal exchange that may take place in this context, naturally presents a problem. Even if the capital sheet “The Economist” ( 11/9/2002) calmly notes that “this movement poses no threat to capitalist corporations”, it is acknowledged that one can speak of an “erosion of property rights”. The occupations, it is reported from Argentina, “emerged as a survival project in a defensive situation. But they raise questions that go far beyond the immediate goal of maintaining one's own jobs ”(Wildcat supplement, 2004, p. 26). More than 10,000 workers in Argentina have practically called into question private property, and some of them still have to assert themselves vigorously against state power. “They experience that they are able to organize the production themselves. Suddenly, in a factory without bosses, nothing can be taken for granted, nothing has to be taken for granted. There are no foremen or masters any more; the workers change working hours and work organization according to their own needs and decide in meetings what and how to produce. The goal of production is no longer profit and profit maximization, but income for as many people as possible and the production of useful things under tolerable conditions ”(Wildcat supplement 2004, p. 26). Despite all this, the workers who are z. Organize in a council-democratic way (cf. Fernandes, 2003), with their factories in a societal-capitalist context that limits and restricts the newly acquired freedoms described. This problem, of which the workers are undoubtedly aware, does not get any smaller if they read the fetish chapter in Chapter Volume 1 before or during the occupation of the factory or subscribe to the crisis, on the one hand through the supposed totality of value-based socialization and, on the other hand, through the sociological one superficial character of what they are doing - namely fighting as class subjects - are informed. As revealing and illuminating as the understanding of the fetish character of the goods is, it only indirectly advances the process of emancipation in this regard. However, if one were to consistently apply the theoretical structure set up by the critique of value, the workers could easily get out of the factories again, because they naturally manufacture products there that have less the character of use values ​​but rather that of exchange values. They would then have along the value-critical hypostatization of the fetish character of the goods and the ultimately not yet cracked commodity form of their products (namely to still be exchange values) the capitalist social context or the “fetishistic commodity-money nexus” (Kurz, 1990, p. 115) not even scratched on their own territory. This simple example also shows the fragility of the theoretical metric of value criticism. It has no practical implication in the theoretical context of argumentation conceived by the crisis group or the ISF.

Marx rightly describes in Capital that the opposition between use value and exchange value has also deepened with the course of technological development. Once “big machinery” has been implemented (however violent this process may have been), a return to the classical subsistence economy and the associated production of single-phase use values ​​will hardly be desirable, even under conditions of worker self-management of production that can only be roughly anticipated in this sense it will not or hardly exist in “developed” societies. Nevertheless, the factory occupations as they were in Argentina and Brazil and are certainly breaking with the scheme G - W - G (money - goods - money) and in particular G - W - G ', towards the actual form of exchange W - G - W represents. According to its material content, this is the movement W - W (cf. Marx, 1988, p. 120). Marx describes this movement in his work “On the Critique of Political Economy” as follows: “If we now consider the result of C - M - C, it sinks together into the metabolism C - W. Commodity is exchanged for commodity, use value for use value and the monetization of the commodity, or the commodity as money, serves only to mediate the metabolism. [...] Money is only the means and the moving force, while the goods useful to life are the goal and the end ”(Marx, 1990, p. 77).

The exchange of “goods” with or without money (cf. Allgemeine Wertform, Marx, 1988, p. 79 and Geldform, Marx, 1988, p. 84) will certainly still take place in a post-capitalist era. No worker and no collective will produce ceramic tiles, food and train wagons at the same time. Nevertheless, every occupied factory is a step towards the destruction of money, which, in its function as the sharpest and most direct form of command, values ​​labor. This struggle in the developing workers 'autonomy, however constrained in the overall capitalist context, will automatically, based on the workers' own subjectivity, also be a struggle against work as alienated work. A new type of product / “commodity” will emerge which can only be represented to a limited extent in the Marxian categories of use value, exchange value and value. This process is open. The critique of value, however, theoretically blocks the process of appropriation and the struggle for self-determined production, which in the example of the factory occupations in Argentina is also a struggle of the workers, with its apodictic formulation of the relationship between use value and exchange value (there is no right life in the wrong) To ensure survival.

The suggestion of Marx, albeit based on the bourgeois economist Ricardo, to measure the value of a commodity using the working hours in it, can also be of importance for the post-capitalist era, in which production under workers' self-management is oriented towards actual needs. Especially when it comes to evaluating or conveying differently manufactured or manufactured products in contrast to the subjective value theory and the utility calculation of the neoclassical, considerations of value theory can hardly be dispensed with. The category of the value of goods or products, which Marx explicitly conceived as historically specific, could in this sense gain a supra-historical quality. H. point beyond the capitalist social context (cf. also Haug, 1976, p. 119).

In addition to the ownership structure, the decisive factor is the command of the added value that is created in the companies. If this command lies with the workers who worked it out, and if there are no more classes in this sense, then the “value”, if one can still speak of “value” at all, is deprived of its demonic character - capitalism is extinct. That a few hundred occupied factories do not mean a revolution is a trivial statement. However, it is not only in Argentina and Brazil that people are resisting exploitation. They do this everywhere and in a variety of forms. At the practical points set in this way in the antagonism of capital work, these movements must be theoretically / critically and also conceptually flanked and radicalized in such a way that the subjects recognize the overall capitalist context and break through the long history of reformist integration under the capital relationship. This also applies to the situation in the metropolises. In this direction, the friendly grimace of Janus-faced late Fordism generated and left behind some false consciousness.

The inherent contradictions of "value criticism"

Any remaining sympathy for the crisis group is fed solely by its own contradictions. It seems as if, in contrast to the Freiburg ISF, it somehow dawns on them that their theory as a whole spans the space of a “revolutionary” waiting hall. In the course of this twilight they come to strange ideas. As already described, Kurz / Lohoff and others negate the category of the (revolutionary) subject as a whole. Nevertheless, they seem to be somehow aware of the hopelessness of this construction and, in their enormous writing frenzy - as a (virtual?) Substitute, so to speak - create an “anti-class” (Kurz, 1989, pp. 38-41), which the capitalist value society context, somehow destroys the goods-money relationship (cf. Kurz, 1990, p. 115). At the same time, however, they denounce radical left-wing references such as that of the “Autonomy New Sequence” to the struggles in the non-capitalist milieu or on the edges of the valuation zones. This Kurz / Lohoff category of the antique class is not tenable. If there can no longer be any subjects “within” the capitalist context and the reference to the struggles in the non-capitalist milieu is negated, the question arises as to where such an “anti-class” could arise. The Swabian autonomous man who steals special offers from Kaisers in Kreuzberg or what is that supposed to be? Nothing against the reference to new social movements and the process of appropriation, but then it can also be named that way. However, it is clear from the texts of the crisis group that they neither particularly value the Autonomen (Editorial - Marxist Critique, 1986) nor the magazine “Autonomie NF” (cf. Tomazky, 1989, p. 86).

A special treat is the fact that the crisis homepage, which has otherwise been thoroughly cleaned of positive references to revolutionary subjects and class struggle, has a link to the Wildcat homepage to the actually, one would think, triple forbidden refuge of operaism and class struggle in the FRG finds. Here the cat finally bites its tail and it seems as if the brains of the “value critics” in their “theoretical waiting hall of the revolution” with the Hegelian form determination of the value and the long wait for the big bang, over time, doubts about their own theoretical draft diffused.

If the crisis can only decipher the class struggle in the sense of a generalization and expansion inherent in the system, i.e. modernization of capitalism (cf. Lohoff, 1996, pp. 58-59), then the statement is that the “conflict of interests inherent in values” (Lohoff, 1998 ) is not simply to be surrendered, constitutes a contradiction. In any case, from the insight that proletarian action in all its contradictions “can be both intrinsic to capital and overcoming the system” (Hüttner, 1995 p. 19) and that a mere community of the insightful, automatic subject ”seeing through as“ practical social movement ”(Kurz, 2004, p. 5) is somewhat poor, the crisis group seems to be a long way off.


Although the value of commodities over the human labor time expended in them cannot be measured or quantified exactly in the positivistic-scientific sense, Marx nevertheless uses a few chapters in Capital to define the value of commodities in this sense. The superiority of Marx's critique over bourgeois economy finds its starting point and core point in the concepts of variable capital and surplus value. In this sense is the category of value the category With who is criticizing the bourgeois economy. In addition to the fact that space is constituted by value, this makes value theft or exploitation visible and understandable. More important than the certainty that the exchange of value and commodities structure the space of bourgeois-capitalist society is the fact that rule is constituted by the de facto entangled value theft (exploitation) and by the accumulation of capital that is conditioned in this way. This entanglement of the Marxian categories, as can also be seen in the presentation of the “Critique of Bourgeois Economy” in its entirety, must remain theoretically visible. In this respect, to permanently position Marxian categories against the capital relation of labor and capital or, more specifically, “workers and capital” (Tronti), must be the task of every radical left, Marxist and social revolutionary theory and practice.

E-mail: j.albohn / at / gmx / dot / de

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