They were the middle class workers, which they were doomed to form part of the Proletariat, and go against the Bourgeoise, as they fight for their interests. They asked for the restoration “of all means of production and exchange” (The Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, Chapter III, paragraph 5, page 29) accompanied too with the traditional
Amongst other notions, such as habitus, field and symbolic violence, Bourdieu developed the theory of capital, which he divided into four forms of capital, cultural, economic, social and symbolic (Wacquant 2007, 268) in order to explain the “realities of social inequality” (Gauntlett 2011). Regarding the notion of cultural capital, which to some extent is based on Karl Marx’s capitalistic approach when describing class struggle, Bourdieu mentions the “scarce symbolic goods, skills and titles” (L. Wacquant 2007, 268) that a part of society possesses. In fact, the elite detains cultural knowledge that they use in order to maintain their status in society, and keep their position above the working-class. Bourdieu also emphasizes how this scheme is reproduced within education, and thereby how social hierarchy not only occurs, but is also conserved (ibid, 262). Indeed, Bourdieu assesses that the educational system replicates the social inequalities that rely within society, which undeniably favors students from upper-class families.
As Marx’s theory suggests exploitation of this kind will result in revolution in the favour for social change. Elster’s criticises this as he explains how at times, surplus can be thinly spread over the exploiters trade partners. Moreover, an independent farmer producing more than he can consume may not know of his exploitation status and therefore may not be motivated to revolt. One may argue that this way, Marx’s requirement for us to compare the amount of labour a person performs and the
For Marx, the egalitarian ideal rest upon the principle “from each according to his ability; to each according to his needs” (Marx & Engels,1972:388, orig. 1848). In an egalitarian communist society, the state is the owner of the means of productions and divide the resources fairly between all citizens. As the means of production are then equally distributed, there would be no
A Marxist sociologist is a materialist and a sociologist that follows the ideas of Marx. Marx’s main concern was that of capitalism and class conflict. In the words of Giddens and Sutton (2013), capitalism is ‘a system of production that contrasts radically with all previous economic systems.’ It was Marx’s belief that all societies, including capitalist societies, are divided into classes, with one being the dominant class. In the case of capitalism, there are two main classes, the bourgeoisie and the proletariat.
Bourgeoisie, which gains the power, defines superstructure “including all social and legal institution, all political and educational systems, all religions and all art” (Bressler, 162), and articulate the ideology which is based on profits of bourgeoisie. The bourgeoisie ideology leads to alienation of individuals, especially proletariats. This bourgeoisie ideology creates the clash between the two classes. Marx supported the working class and their victory over dominant class. Marxism believes in providing equal opportunity to the working class as that are available to the
Marx and Engels look at capitalism with seriously negative opinions. They regard the system as extremely unsuitable, and are deeply concerned with getting rid of it. In a capitalist society, capitalists own and control the main resources of production - machinery, factories, mines, capital, etc. The modern working classes, or proletariats, own only their labor. Proletariats work for the capitalists, who own the product that was produced and then sell it for a profit.
Developed in the 19th century by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels was a theory called Marxism. In dictionary terms one can say that Marxism is “a system of economic, social, and political philosophy based on ideas that view social change in terms of economic factors.” (Business Dictionary) But what is Marxism? Let’s look at it this way that if a theory ignores the economic realities of human culture then it is misinterpreting it.
Mandel defines Karl Marx’s pioneered perspective as a view wherein it views history or social systems as having conflict between social classes, with the rich having the utmost power. It is also the antithesis of capitalism, Mandel further stating that capitalism serves to acquire or to exploit (1977). Likewise, in the Communist Manifesto, Marx stated that the working class (proletariats) should unite and stand up against their oppressors. Functionalism is defined as the view wherein society is made up of parts, where each part is contributing to the whole, and each part is contributing to society’s progression (CliffNotes). Durkheim’s “Division of Labor” can be defined as how divisons in society can ultimately be good for the people in it, creating a some sort of mutual connection between themselves (Crossman, 2015).
According to Marx society was divided into two classes that were in eternal conflict in the battle for resources, or as Marx coined; “the means of production”. The first class were the bourgeoisie, which Marx described as the sole owners of the means of production as well as the media. The bourgeoisie used their power and influence to exploit the second class, which Marx called the proletariat which consisted of all the workers of the world. Marx rejected the idea that the wealthy pulled themselves from their own bootstraps, which he called “false consciousness” and in return coined the term “class consciousness”, which referred to a persons awareness of their own social status, especially in terms of class conflict. Overall, Marx concluded that social order is created maintained by domination and power.
Canada, among other advanced countries, has a serious and growing inequality problem. The popular saying “rich become richer”, is actually in existence in Canada. It is hypothesized in Canadian society that dominant groups and members of society can rule and survive much better in the country. Such kind of assumptions let superior people maintain their socio-economic status. In the upcoming paragraphs, I will be talking more about the social factors like class and gender in order to explain social inequality in Canada and the concepts of ideology, dominant culture, and hegemony.
1. Which perspective/theory is reflected in the article? The conflict perspective is best reflected in the article “Keeping up with the Jones – The Great Myth” by Ricky L. Jones. The conflict theory states that society is constantly changing due to class conflict and the fight over scare resources in society.