Labour appearing as Value.

Essence must appear:

“A quantity of labour has no value, is not a commodity, but is that which transforms commodities into values, it is their common substance; as manifestations of it commodities are qualitatively equal and only quantitatively different. They [appear] as expressions of definite quantities of social labour time.” MECW 32 p. 322

It does so via the alienation of abstract labour:

“But the labour which constitutes the substance of value is not only uniform, simple, average labour; it is the labour of a private individual represented in a definite product. However, the product as value must be the embodiment of social labour and, as such, be directly convertible from one use value into any other. (The particular use value in which labour is directly represented is irrelevant so that it can be converted from one form into another.) Thus the labour of individuals has to be directly represented as its opposite, social labour; this transformed labour is, as its immediate opposite, abstract, general labour, which is therefore represented in a general equivalent. Only by its alienation does individual labour manifest itself as its opposite. The commodity, however, must have this general expression before it is alienated. This necessity to express individual labour as general labour is equivalent to the necessity of expressing a commodity as money. The commodity receives this expression in so far as the money serves as a measure and expresses the value of the commodity in its price. It is only through sale, through its real transformation into money, that the commodity acquires its adequate expression as exchange value. The first transformation is merely a theoretical process, the second is a real one.” MECW 32 p. 323


About HR

Deep in the adjunct crackhole.
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