Re(2): [ox] more on use-value
- From: "Franz J. Nahrada" <f.nahrada magnet.at>
- Date: Mon, 27 Nov 2000 22:27:57 +0100
I argued "use-value" was a biased category which blocks
critique of technologies and Graham replies:
I don't see why. Take a specific example: a design for an electronic
circuit, now and in the gpl-gesellschaft :-)
For this to have a use value (or if you prefer what Ralf pointed out
is a synonym, 'usefulness') it must satisfy some criteria:
1) Valid for any society: it must be physically possible (a design for
a perpetual motion machine has no use value, though it may have artistic
or imaginative values)
2) Partially valid for both societies: a design which will consume less
is more useful. Today, that only applies if the design is battery powered,
since something which exhausts its batteries in 5 minutes will not sell.
In the gpl-gesellschaft design for a mains-powered device which consumes
less power than another is the more useful.
I just found a great example of technology which shows by its very
this difference in "use-value(s)"
3) Valid only in gpl-gesellschaft:
a design which can be easily made without access to a huge factory is
more useful than a design which cannot be so made
right. RIGHT!!! This is a big difference to industrial communism.
4) Valid in gpl-gesellschaft, and actually negatively-valid (?) now:
a design for a device which can be easily repaired is more useful than
a design for a device which is throw-away only.
right. and the artificial differences and and and....
How does the concept of use-value block this kind of analysis?
Question in return:
How did the concept of use-value enable this analysis?
You have rejected the fact that use-value is neutral or
everything produced has use-value per se.
You went to analyze the social constitution of products.
As we discussed in our private mail conversation, the flaw
of the term use-value is that on one side it describes the
objective physical qualities of the ware, in distinction to
its relative social qualities (i.e. value)
On the other side, use-value only makes sense as a
relational category between the user and the ware -
and Marx describes this part as a rather "private"
relationship outside the political economy. So its the
"value" the user gives to the ware as a physical answer to
his needs, its an "objective" image of a subjective mind.
So the category at least is not unproblematic ;-)
(hier bricht das Manuskript ab)
Organisation: projekt oekonux.de