Writings of Karl Marx had formed the theoretical basis for communism and the continual debate against capitalism. Marx understood capitalism to be a system in which the means of production are privately owned and profit is generated by the sale of the proletariat’s labour. He considered it to be an unfair exploitation of hard work with alienated social interactions and purpose. I agree with Marx that capitalism is indeed unfair and alienating, because it concentrates wealth within a small group of people by exploiting the surplus value of workers’ labour, and creates an alienated workforce. Hence, this essay will first discuss the relevance of Marx’s perception of capitalism as an alienating and unfair system for the contemporary world, before examining the potential of governments to influence the extent of alienation and unfairness that occurs.
It is argued that social inequality occurs because of the conflict between the upper-class and the working-class, or as Marx defines it, the Bourgeoisie and the Proletariat. Based on the Manifesto of the Communist Party (Marx and Engels, 1848), the divergence emerges because the aim of the Bourgeoisie is to obtain a surplus-value that is produced by the work of the Proletariat. On the other side, the Bourgeoisie provides the Proletariat with the minimum required, such as a place to live and a minimum wage, in order to keep the society under control and avoid a rebellion. However, Marx did predict a revolt of the working-class that would eventually lead to a communist regime. When it comes to applying this theoretical approach to reality, it is evident to notice that no global revolt in regards to capitalism has occurred.
Marx believed that the base of a society lied in the economics and that the owners, who were making profit, were over the workers/laborers. This was wrong because the profit owners would create a “superstructure” that was made up by the state military, police, education, religion and ideology. Marx interpreted the “superstructure” as being, “…not the consciousness of men that determines their being, but, on the contrary, their social being that determines their consciousness” (Ball eat
In "Commodity Fetishism" , Marx argues that real social relations within a Capitalist Society are garbed under the presence of commodities. Commodities form an intrinsic and vital part of the capitalist society than the human labor. Marx explains that human labor gives value to the product but it appears as if the value results from the nature of the products. Within the capitalist society, value is attached to the commodity itself and no attention is paid towards the labor doled out to produce that commodity. Through his analysis, Marx explains that how a worker feels alienated from the commodity that she produces.
These theorists believed that crime was the result of this decline and could be reduced by recovering social solidarity (Lilly, Cullen, & Ball, 2015). Under this perspective, the erosion of social solidarity was viewed in economic terms, in that the new division of labor unjustifiably exploited one class over the other (Lilly, 2015). Marx and Engels claimed that conflict was inherent due to the nature of social arrangements under capitalism (Lilly, 2015). Unfortunately, capitalism provided more power to those already in power and created conflict due to unfair disparities (Lilly, 2015). Thus, Marx and Engels provided that destroying capitalism and implementing communism would increase social solidarity and reduce crime (Lilly,
Sinclair emphasizes that capitalism is detrimental to the working class, and he proposes that socialism is the solution to economic inequality and the lack of power among the working class. For example, he described “the tricks of the packers, their masters, the tyrants who ruled them… the irregular hours and the cruel speeding-up, the lowering of wages, the raising of prices! The whole machinery of society was at their oppressors’ command” (177). Sinclair depicted the factory owners in the novel as disgraceful rulers to reflect how capitalism allowed ruling class leaders to oppress workers. He also portrays the corrupt effects of capitalism on workers’ well-being, illustrating that “each day the struggle becomes fiercer, the pace more cruel; each day you have to toil a little harder and feel the iron hand of circumstance close upon you a little tighter” (298).
I began with a Hegelian notion of alienation, but have since developed a more materialist conception. I have come to the conclusion that capitalism is what mediates social relationships of production through commodities, including labour, that are bought and sold on the market. Connection between persons such as workers or between workers and capitalists is corrupted. The possibility that one may give up ownership of one 's own labour, one 's capacity to transform the world, is tantamount to being alienated from one 's own nature. This loss is a prime example of false consciousness, the scenario where the ideology of the ruling class is embodied willfully by a subordinate class.
The other strength is that one of the core themes is that “…the present economic system and its consequences weaken the social feelings…” (Cullen, Agnew, & Wilcox, 2014). Morals and empathy have no place in the upper classes when in a capitalist system; the need for more and more overshadow everything else and therefore lead to egoism and apathy. One of the major weaknesses of Bonger’s theory is that the solution to reducing crime is for there to be a shift from capitalism to socialism. That would take numerous, massive social changes for that to even be in the realm of possibility and as of now, it’s simply unrealistic. There aren’t any smaller-scale solutions that wouldn’t take years, several steps and attempts, or a social uprising.
CHAPTER 3 CLASS STRUGGLE Generally class struggle means conflict between the upper class and lower class the idea of Class struggle is long-used mostly by socialists and communists, who define a class by its relationship to the means of production such as factories, land, and machinery. From this point of view, the social control of production and labour is a fight between classes, and the division of these resources basically involves conflict and causes damage. Societies are socially divided based on status, wealth, or control of social production and distribution, and in this division of class conflict arises. It is important to know Karl Marx theory on class struggle; he viewed the structure of society in relation to
But where mercantilis see economic as a tool of politics. Marx did not see the success of capitalism as a weak or retrograde case. On the opposed capitalism means advance in two manner : Capitalism damages earlier affiliation of construction like feudalism that was equally more exploitive with peasants subsisting under slave like condition. Second and most important for marx capitalism paves way for a social uprising Which implies that construction going to placed beneath social regulation for the welfare of the lower class who are the vast
(page 81) Therefore, by taking an active role in choosing the elected officials, as a means to overthrow capitalism. Collective ownership was the way for employees’ achieved voice. Although they were not very successful, I like how The Knight of the Labor, viewed workers/producers as human beings, and how money although nice to have, was of less value that human life. It seems that they were not fully knowledgeable in what it took to operate a successful employee union, but I feel that their intentions were honorable. The AFL although they did feel that workers should also benefit monetarily, they still felt that capitalism was the only way for a business to prosper.