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No. 824: The theory of exploitation as the unequal exchange of labour

Roberto Veneziani , Queen Mary University of London
Naoki Yoshihara , University of Massachusetts Amherst, Hitotsubashi University, and Kochi University of Technology

May 15, 2017

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Abstract

This paper analyses the normative and positive foundations of the theory of exploitation as the unequal exchange of labour (UEL). The key intuitions behind all of the main approaches to UEL exploitation are explicitly analysed as a series of formal claims in a general economic environment. It is then argued that these intuitions can be captured by one fundamental axiom - called Labour Exploitation - which defines the basic domain of all UEL exploitation forms and identifies the formal and theoretical framework for the analysis of the appropriate definition of exploitation.

J.E.L classification codes: D63; B51

Keywords:Exploitation, Unequal Exchange of Labour, axiomatic analysis

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