Karl Marx Theory Of Class Analysis

1133 Words5 Pages
The term class can become a confusing concept within social theories with theoretical disputes about the proper definition and elaboration of the concept of class. Studying the sociological theories of class by Karl Marx and Erik Olin Wright, this essay argues that the Australian myth of a wealthy and privileged minority of Australians reinforcing ongoing inequality while exercising their power produced through exploitation, symbolic capital and social stratification is relevant today. The idea behind Karl Marx’s theory of class is the structure of capitalism and can be “regarded as an objective phenomenon”1. It consists of two main classes; the bourgeoisie, the capitalists who own the means of produce, and the larger proletariat who must sell their own labour power. Erik Olin Wright’s theory is an adaptation from the classical Marxism to modern-day economies, to ‘scientifically define and clarify concepts such as class and empirically test them”.2
Karl Marx’s theory helps us to understand the fundamentals of society and the reasoning behind the individuals’ behaviour. Within the Marxist tradition, the most salient aspect of historical variation in inequality is the ways in which economic systems vary in the manner in which an economic surplus is produced and appropriated, and classes are therefore defined with respect to the mechanisms of surplus extraction. Erik Olin Wrights theory helps us to understand class at a micro-level comparing to Marx’s analysis at a
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