XAT 2018 Question 11


Please read the passage below and answer the questions that follow:

Labor and capital are the opposite poles of capitalist society. This polarity begins in each enterprise and is realized on a national and even international scale as a giant duality of classes which dominates the social structure. And yet this polarity is incorporated in a necessary identity between the two. Whatever its form, whether as money or commodities or means of production, capital is labor: it is labor that has been performed in the past, the objectified product of preceding phases of the cycle of production which becomes capital only through appropriation by the capitalist and its use in the accumulation of more capital. At the same time, as living labor which is purchased by the capitalist to set the production process into motion, labor is capital. That portion of money capital which is set aside for the payment of labor, the portion which in each cycle is converted into living labor power, is the portion of capital which stands for and corresponds to the working population, and upon which the latter subsists. Before it is anything else, therefore, the working class is the animate part of capital, the part which will set in motion the process that yields to the total capital its increment of surplus value. As such, the working class is first of all, raw material for exploitation. This working class lives a social and political existence of its own, outside the direct grip of capital. It protests and submits, rebels or is integrated into bourgeois society, sees itself as a class or loses sight of its own existence, in accordance with the forces that act upon it and the moods, conjunctures, and conflicts of social and political life. But since, in its permanent existence, it is the living part of capital, its occupational structure, modes of work, and distribution through the industries of society are determined by the ongoing processes of the accumulation of capital. It is seized, released, flung into various parts of the social machinery and expelled by others, not in accord with its own will or self-activity, but in accord with the movement of capital.

Question 11

While labor is capital, it is poles apart from each other because:


The paragraph begins with the question statement and justifies it towards the end of the passage  - 'not in accord with its own (labor's) will.... but in accord with the movement (will) of capital'. Option A and D are untrue. C and E are out of context. Basically, the passage argues that while there are similarities between labor and capital, they are very different, because capital controls labor.

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