Labour Power

Labour power (in German: Arbeitskraft, or labour force; in French: force de travail) is a crucial concept used by Karl Marx in his critique of capitalist political economy. He regarded labour power as the most important of the productive forces of human beings. Labour power can be simply defined as work-capacity, the ability to do work. Labour power exists in any kind of society, but on what terms it is traded or combined with means of production to produce goods and services has historically varied greatly.

Under capitalism, according to Marx, the productive powers of labour appear as the creative power of capital. Indeed "labour power at work" becomes a component of capital, it functions as working capital. Work becomes just work, workers become an abstract labour force, and the control over work becomes mainly a management prerogative.

Read more about Labour PowerDefinition, Labour-power Versus Labour, Labour Power As Commodity, Value of Labour Power, Labour Power and Wages, Consumption of Labour Power, Reproduction of Labour Power, The Role of The State, Quotation By Marx On The Value of Labour Power and Classical Political Economy, Labour Power and Labour Market Flexibilisation, Criticism of The Concept of Labour Power

Other articles related to "labour, labour power":

Wage Labour - Criticisms
... Wage-labour societies emerged from removing the alternative means of self-sustainment used previously by peasants ... have been compelled by economic necessity to no feasible alternative than that of wage labour, exploitation occurs thus the claim that wage labor is "voluntary" on the ... Wage labour is often criticized as "wage slavery" by socialists and most anarchists ...
Labor Power
... Labour power (in German Arbeitskraft, or labour force in French force de travail) is a crucial concept used by Karl Marx in his critique of capitalist political economy ... He regarded labour power as the most important of the productive forces of human beings ... Labour power can be simply defined as work-capacity, the ability to do work ...
Labor Power - Labour Power and Labour Market Flexibilisation
... The commercial value of human labour power is strongly linked to the assertion of human needs by workers as citizens ... Therefore labour costs have never been simply an "economic" or "commercial" matter, but also a moral, cultural and political issue ... that governments have typically strongly regulated the sale of labour power with laws and rules for labour contracts ...
Criticism of The Concept of Labour Power
... have often argued that Marx's definition of labour-power, and how its value and price are regulated, is vague, incomplete, too general or imprecise at any rate, that it permits different interpretations ... It has been argued by Ian Steedman that Marx's own concept of labour power was in truth very similar to that of David Ricardo and Adam Smith and, therefore, that Marx was ... interpretation is (as he himself said) different from the "natural price of labour" of the classical political economists, because the "free play of market forces" does not gravitate ...
Marxistic - Concepts - Social Classes
... societies Proletariat "those individuals who has nothing to offer but their labour power, because in the capitalist mode of production, they do not own the means of ... to exploit the proletariat because the workers’ labour generates a surplus value greater than the workers’ wages ... Bourgeoisie those who "own the means of production" and buy labour power from the proletariat, thus exploiting the proletariat they subdivide as bourgeoisie and the ...

Famous quotes containing the words power and/or labour:

    When power becomes gracious and descends into the visible—such descent I call beauty.
    Friedrich Nietzsche (1844–1900)

    When he painted a road, the roadmakers were there in his imagination. When he painted the turned earth of a ploughed field, the gesture of the blade turning the earth was included in his own act. Wherever he looked he saw the labour of existence; and this labour, recognized as such, was what constituted reality for him.
    John Berger (b. 1926)