The Role Of Capitalism In South Africa

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Marxism refers to the body of ideas first worked out by Karl Marx. These ideas shape a theoretical basis for the struggle of the working class to a higher form of human society (Sewell et al., 2008). Capitalism on the other hand, is the social structure that emerges on the basis of the social relationship between the consumers and the sellers of labour power (Ritzer, 2000). This essay will discuss the preconditions for capitalism, which include: commodities, surplus value and labour power. The contradictions of capitalism such as; alienation, exploitation and the decline in human development and will also be discussed, as well as contemporary examples of these found in South Africa. Karl Marx was one of the first people to criticize the capitalist …show more content…

One of the pre conditions for capitalism is commodities. Capitalism was the only economic form where the majority of the products were produced as commodities (Ritzer, 2000). A commodity is a useful object or thing that is produced, not for immediate consumption by the producer, but for the specific purpose of exchange with other consumers using a medium of exchange such as money (Ritzer, 2000). As the majority of products were produced to make commodities in this manner, satisfaction of needs was no longer important nor was it the aim of the capitalist. Production now took on the sole objective to produce items for the purpose of exchange and for the subsequent acquisition of profit. In capitalism there is an impersonal social relationship where commodities are bought without knowing who has produced them and how (Ritzer, …show more content…

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