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Raw material

A raw material is something that is acted upon by human labour or industry to create some product that humans desire. Often the term is used to denote material that came from nature and is still in a unprocessed or minimally processed state. Iron ore, crude oil, and logs would be examples.

In Marxist economics, the term is used in a distinct sense: raw material is a subject of labor (something that will be worked on by labor) that has already undergone some alteration by labour. In other words it does not apply to materials in their entirely unprocessed state.

See also


  • Marx, Capital, Vol. 1, Part III, Chap. 7.
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