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Quantitative measurement of some Marxist categories


  • M J Webber


In this paper the theoretical and methodological requirements for the measurement of Marxist categories are examined. After a brief introduction to the Marxist theory of value, it is claimed that labour must be the standard of commodities; the meaning of social necessity is explained, the methods of treating skilled and heterogeneous labour illustrated, and productive labour defined. It is then shown how value is measured, when there is joint production, fixed capital, and choice of technique; the methods explicitly treat the time structure of production and emphasise that only expected value can be measured. Measures of the performance of the capitalist system are derived; and the relationship of value measures to price measures is stated. Last, the data requirements of these proposals are considered in the conclusion.

Suggested Citation

  • M J Webber, 1987. "Quantitative measurement of some Marxist categories," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 19(10), pages 1303-1321, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:19:y:1987:i:10:p:1303-1321

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