A Sociology of the Soviet Union by Gary Littlejohn (auth.)

By Gary Littlejohn (auth.)

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M. Miller's article 'Comparative Social Mobility', Current Sociology, 1960, was somewhat misplaced, since Miller had inaccurately computed the rates of social mobility in the USSR on the basis of data provided by A. Inkeles and R. A. Bauer, The Soviet Citizen, Oxford University Press, 1959. Correct use by Miller of the data produced by lnkeles and Bauer, it was argued, would have shown that the Soviet Union had a different 'mobility profile' from that of the USA. This conclusion was further supported by the use of Miller's criteria in the analysis of the data for women supplied by lnkeles and Bauer.

These critiques are by no means the same. Marx's 'Capital' and Capitalism Today, for example, contains a critique of the Sraffan concept of the economy. For example, L. Harris, 'The Science of the Economy', Economy and Society, vol. 7, no. 3, August 1978. It must be said, however, that Harris's article seems to be based on the supposition that one cannot both understand the labour theory of value and be critical of it. The debate is continued in Economy and Society, vol. 8, no. 3, August 1979. Various somewhat different comments on the difficulties of using the concepts of the labour theory of value for analysing the division oflabour have already been made in G.

In other words, what pattern of differential access to the means of production would prevent some agents from predominating in a fashion which seriously diminished the capacities of other agents? To claim that a situation arises where no set of agents predominates in determining the conditions of access comes close to claiming that the division of labour does not produce differential capacities in economic agents: in other words, that the division oflabour does not produce important effects, and does not really matter.

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