If we look at a translation from that first German edition [the Marxist Internet Archive has one of Chapter 1, The Commodity, by Albert Dragstedt], Marx's language, analysis, and demonstration of the relative, equivalent, and value forms of the commodity are clear examples of Marx's extraction of the rational kernel from Hegel's dialectic.
Marx in this first chapter is explaining the most critical facet of his investigation into capital [which is why it is the first chapter] and his materialist dialectic- the interpenetration of form and substance, of identity and opposition are clear.
But commodities are objects. They have to be what they are in an object-like way or else reveal it in their own object-like relationships. In the production of linen, a particular quantum of human labour exists in having been expended. The linen's value is the merely objective reflection of the labour so expended, but it is not reflected in the body of the linen. It reveals itself [i.e., acquires a sensual expression] by its value relationship it to the coat. By the linen's equating the coat to itself as value-- while at the same time distinguishing itself from the coast as object of use-- what happens is that the coat becomes the form of appearance of line-value as opposed to linen-body: its value-form as distinguished from its natural form.
The emphasis is in the original, as supplied by Marx.
Where does this get Marx? Where it always gets us-- back to the specific social organization of labor:
So the determination is two-fold-- as the concrete specific object of production, in all articles of production as value. It is the social determination, transforming labor into raw undifferentiated labor power, that contains the antagonism, the conflict, in Marx's word, the "contradiction" where labor power becomes opposite to and the negation of the power of labor.
S. Artesian November 23, 2010