Value and Power in Economics
Keywords:Value, Valuation process, Power, Coercion, Positional goods
In this article we rethink the field of value in economic theory. First, we prove that the transhistorical and nominalist approaches show different weaknesses and can not account for the constitutive dimensions of value. Within this context, we demonstrate why value emerged in the first place and what epistemological dimensions it provided and enabled for economic reflexivity. In addition, we demonstrate that it is impossible to understand inherent value as an immanent property of goods in economic transactions and we critique the approach that renders value to the theory of price. Economic relations reflect value-related aspects without which the relations could not be understood. We then analyze the interrelations between power and value, proving the constitutive dimension of power in understanding value, demonstrated in selected examples. We treat power as a constellation in which economic agents act on other subjects to provoke certain activity. Power may occur only where the behaviour of subjects is not entirely determined. Finally, one additional selected example shows the range of this theory of power in terms of positional goods.
Key words: Value, Valuation process, Power, Coercion, Positional goods.
JEL: B50, P16.