Karl Marx - Essay Example

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Karl Marx is one the historical theorist who developed the idea of commodity and the value attached to it. Karl Marx defined a commodity as a unique object that has properties that can satisfy specific human wants in the society…
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Karl Marx
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Download file to see previous pages Any product that successfully satisfies the human wants has both the quality and the quantity dimensions that make them different. In addition, Marx perceives a commodity as a good or service that can be exchanged within a market or as an object of trade. While he feels the value aspect of the commodity must be understood for an effective definition, he feels that fetishism of a commodity is another crucial element that makes a complex matter to understand. The fetishism property of a commodity conceals much information that requires to be revealed if the commodity is to be understood. Marx expresses products as unique products that can only be understood if their forms of value are well understood (302). One form of value that he identified is the use value of a product or service that makes that product makes that product a useful thing. The utility of a product is the property that makes it have a use value in the business environment and makes desirable in the society. The fact that a product has the ability to satisfy unique needs of the human beings makes it be demanded for that purpose. At this point he states that the use value of a product cannot be measured and can only be identified while it’s consumed by the human beings. The wealth of a society is attached to the use value of a good which is of a qualitative nature. Another form of value that Marx presents is the exchange value of a commodity that drives trade in the society. The exchange value is the measurable property of a product that can allow it to be exchanged in the market. Every product can be expressed in definite quantities and these units can be used to help the people to exchange the goods. For instance, 5 units of gold can be exchanged for 10 units of silver and the same way 4 units of diamond can be exchanged for a thousand units of iron. However, the exchange value of a commodity is a complex matter that cannot be determined by just looking at the product but requires its relation with another product. The exchange value is attached to the physical quantitative value of a product rather than the qualitative aspect that defines the use value. Marx (303) proceeds to develop the idea that the exchange value of a commodity is the expression or the formulae that relates two commodities in the market. Marx defines value as if it is an independent property from both use value and the exchange value of a product. He states that the value of a product is related to the amount of labor time and skills that are necessary to produce the commodity. While labor may be invested, it is still possible to produce no value especially if the commodity so produced is meant for personal use. The value of a commodity is determined by its usefulness to the society rather than the person who produces. Additionally, the value of a product is not constant and is inclined to vary. At this point he draws a relationship between the value of a product and its use value. When a product has a value attached to it, it has to have a use value for it to qualify as a worthy commodity in the market. In this perspective, the value, use value and the exchange value of a product are unique properties that can be synthesized separately yet they are conjoined to define a commodity in trade. Marx also drew an imperative relationship between labor and the value of a product in the society. Labor is the effort utilized to produce a commodity and the fact that it is variable in nature the value of a commodity a variable. In a capitalist society, the amount of lab ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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