In the human, as we have seen, the essential feature that makes for
a labor capacity superior to that of the animal is the combination of execution
with a conception of the thing to be done. But as human labor becomes
a social rather than an individual phenomenon, it is possible--unlike in
the instance of animals where the motive force, instinct, is inseparable
from action--to divorce conception from execution. This dehumanization
of the labor process, in which workers are reduced almost to the level
of labor in its animal form, while purposeless and unthinkable in the case
of the self-organized and self-motivated social labor of a community of
producers, becomes crucial for the management of purchased labor.
For if the workers’ execution is guided by their own conception, it is
not possible, as we have seen, to enforce upon them either the methodological
efficiency or the working pace desired by capital. The capitalist
therefore learns from the start to take advantage of this aspect of human
labor power, and to break the unity of the labor process (78).