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Shvoong Home>Social Sciences>Karl Marx and Commodification Summary

Karl Marx and Commodification

Book Summary   by:mahaprabhu     Original Author: Mauro Pereira
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One of the most important concepts in Marxist theory that helps to understand relationships of production in modern society is commodity (something that has been produced for the purpose of being exchanged or sale). The commodity form was a starting point for Marx’s critical analysis of capitalism. He argued that when the bourgeois, in the process of accumulating wealth, produces goods and services solely for the purpose of sale them they become commodities. Marx called this process of buying and sale of commodities as capitalism since that this system is built around the drive to increase capital. In this process the workers become a commodity as the capitalist buy their labour with money. It is also interesting to observe that as services become commodified the process of transformation of nature into city takes place. For instance Kaika (2000) in their study about the fetishizing urban spaces used water and water networks as an example to describe the shift of meanings of urban technological networks during modernity. They argue that as water becomes commodified nature itself becomes re-invented in its urban form. Moreover, according to them this takes place in terms of cultural code of hygiene, aesthetic, cleanliness and other uses of water as mere use value.
Published: August 23, 2007   
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