Skip to main content

The Fetishism of Commodities

  • Chapter
  • 56 Accesses

Abstract

The ghostly presence of Karl Marx has been haunting these pages. So, as we now enter into the mystifying territory that he identified as “commodity fetishism,” it seems fitting that I should once again summon up his words. “All our inventions and progress seem to result in endowing material forces with intellectual life and stultifying human life with a material force.”1 This statement served as a background for several of my previous discussions of the fetishism strategy. Now I will be bringing Marx’s words into the foreground, linking them with his meditation on “The Fetishism of the Commodity and its Secret” the title of the fourth section of Chapter One of his magnum opus, Capital.2

Keywords

  • Child Labor
  • Material Thing
  • Surplus Labor
  • Reality Show
  • Bourgeois Society

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

Chapter
USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • DOI: 10.1057/9780230601208_8
  • Chapter length: 23 pages
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
eBook
USD   64.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-0-230-60120-8
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Hardcover Book
USD   84.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  • Amariglio, Jack and Antonio, Callari (1993). “Marxian Value Theory and the Problem of the Role of Commodity Fetishism,” in Apter and Pietz.

    Google Scholar 

  • Apter, Emily and Pietz William, eds. (1993). Fetishism as Cultural Discours. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bai, Matt, “The New Boss,” The New York Times Magazin. January 30, 2005.

    Google Scholar 

  • Barboza, David (2005). “Stream of Chinese Exports is Becoming a Flood,” The New York Time. April 4.

    Google Scholar 

  • Barboza, David (2005). “China, New Land of Shoppers, Builds Malls on Gigantic Scale,” The New York Time. May 25.

    Google Scholar 

  • Barboza, David (2005). “Ogre to Slay? Outsource It To the Chinese,” The New York Time. December 9.

    Google Scholar 

  • Barboza, David (2006). Sharp Labor Shortage in China May Lead to World Trade Shift, The New York Time. April 3.

    Google Scholar 

  • Barboza, David (2005). and Altman, Daniel, “That Blur? It ’s China Moving Up the Pack,” The New York Time. December 21.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bradsher, Keith (2005). “Tycoons Extend Rivalry to Chinese Television,” The New York Time. August 27,

    Google Scholar 

  • Bradsher, Keith (2005). “China Retreats Now, But It Will Be Back,” The New York Time. August 3.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bradsher, Keith (2005). “Saying Goodbye to Mr. Greenspan,” The New York Time. July 21.

    Google Scholar 

  • Brottman, Mikita (2005). Reality TV: history and format. Personal communication, April.

    Google Scholar 

  • Engels, Friederich (1845). Conditions of the Working Class in Englan. (Liepsig: Die Lage der arbietenden Klasse in England. London: Blackwell, 1958.

    Google Scholar 

  • Fenichel, Otto (1938). In Collected Papers of Otto Eeniche. Second Series. New York: W.W. Norton and Company, Inc., 1954.

    Google Scholar 

  • Fernbach, David, ed. (1974). Surveys from Exil. (Karl Marx, Political Writings Vol II). New York: Vintage Books.

    Google Scholar 

  • Freud, Sigmund (1920). Beyond the Pleasure Principle, Standard Editio. XVIII. London: The Hogarth Press and the Institute of Psychoanalysis.

    Google Scholar 

  • Human Rights Watch: Child Labor (2005). 1–4.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kahn, Joseph (2004). “China ’s Elite Learn to Flaunt While the New Landless Weep,” The New York Time. December 25.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kamenka, Eugene, ed. (1983). The Portable Karl Mar. New York: Viking Penguin.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kaplan, Ann E. (2005). Survivo. format. Personal communication, April.

    Google Scholar 

  • Keenan, Thomas (1993). “The Point is to (Ex)change it.” In Apter and Pietz.

    Google Scholar 

  • Klosterman, Chuck (2004). Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs: A Low Culture Manifest. New York: Scribner.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lohr, Steve (2005). “Unocol Bid Denounced at Hearing,” The New York Time. July 13.

    Google Scholar 

  • Marx, Karl (1867), [1976]. Capital Vol.. Eds. Ernest Mandel and New Left Review, trans. Ben Fowles. London: Pelican Books. Reprinted in 1990 by Penguin Classics.

    Google Scholar 

  • Marx, Karl (1856). “Speech at the Anniversary of the People ’s Pape. ” In Fernbach.

    Google Scholar 

  • Marx, Karl (1852) [1869]. “The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte,” In Fernbach, In Kamenka, In Wilson.

    Google Scholar 

  • Marx, Karl (1848). “Manifesto of the Communist Party.” In Kamenka, in Wilson.

    Google Scholar 

  • Marx, Karl (1844). “Alienated Labour: First Manuscript.” in Kamenka.

    Google Scholar 

  • Marx, Karl (1844). “On the Power of Money in Bourgeois Society.” In McLellan.

    Google Scholar 

  • Marx, Karl (1842). “The Leading Article,” as cited by Pietz.

    Google Scholar 

  • McLellan, David, ed. (1977). Karl Marx, Selected Writing. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Oilman, Bertell (1971). Alienatio. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Oilman, Bertell (1993). Dialectical Investigation. New York and London: Routledge, Chapman and Hall.

    Google Scholar 

  • Pietz, William (1993). “Fetishism and Materialism: The Limits of Theory in Marx.” In Apter and Pietz.

    Google Scholar 

  • Siddiqui, Farraaz and Harry Anthony, Patrinos (2005). “Child Labor: Issues, Causes and Interventions.” Human Capital Development and Operations Policy.

    Google Scholar 

  • Stein, Mark A. (2005). “China ’s Shot Heard Around the World,” The New York Time. August, 3.

    Google Scholar 

  • Thompson, Ginger (2005). “Fraying of a Latin Textile Industry,” Made Elsewhere series. The New York Time. March 25.

    Google Scholar 

  • Wheen, Francis (1999) (2001). Karl Marx: A Lif. New York and London: W.W. Norton and Company.

    Google Scholar 

  • Wilson, Edmund (1940) (2003). To The Finland Statio. New York: The New York Review of Books.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Authors

Copyright information

© 2006 Louise J. Kaplan

About this chapter

Cite this chapter

Kaplan, L.J. (2006). The Fetishism of Commodities. In: Cultures of Fetishism. Palgrave Macmillan, New York. https://doi.org/10.1057/9780230601208_8

Download citation