Karl Marx’s view of Capitalism

Blog #1

Karl Marx, one of the most influential person throughout modern history. He broke down the structure of Capitalism around 150 years ago, which he pointed out that no true freedom and equality under the structure of Capitalism. In Marx’s analysis, society fundamentally was divided between two classes that clashed in pursuit of their own interests. One class was the one that owns the capital known as bourgeoisie, they had to produce more and more products to competitive with other producer to maintain their wealth. The other class, known as proletariat, had no forces of production, which they needed to work to meet their own basic needs. Marx examined the industrial societies of his time, he saw the factory as the center of conflict between the bourgeoisie (the owners) and the proletariat (the workers). He viewed these relationships in systematic terms; he believed that a system of economic, social, and political relationships to maintain the power and dominance of the owners over the workers.

The main idea of Capitalism is that everything can be a commodity as long as it can make profits. Since anything and everything has its price, money equals to power. So in modern society ” many money can’t get you everything, but without money you can’t get anything.” As long as there is a need (market) there will be at least a commodity. Back in the days the value of sex is only for the purpose of procreation to maintain the large mobile supply of labor powers. However, throughout sexual openness and the changes of sexuality values in modern days sex is used to sell commodities, such as porn, sex toys, etc. Marx argued that the working class should be overthrow the existing class system, because Capitalism is nothing but exploitative towards the working class. However, throughout history we found that Capitalism is the most efficient ideology to maintain the society. As example , the communist China, it once overthrew the landlords and all the bourgeoisie in the 1950s, yet they still capitalized their economy after 1987. Since selfish is nature of all human beings, Capitalism is that we inherit within our souls.

 

One response to “Karl Marx’s view of Capitalism

  1. Nice synopsis of Marx’s theory of class conflict, a theory that can be described as systematic, but even better as *systemic*, as he views capitalism as a “system,” with a particular logic. His theory is also historically grounded, and it’s nice to see you include some historical observations, noting changes in commodification with respect to sex. You’re right about the ever-expanding market of commodities related to sex; however, while there’s certainly been a proliferation of the ways one can buy sexual services, sex work is hardly new (Prostitution is commonly described as the “oldest profession,” isn’t it?).

    Your suggestion that capitalism’s resilience is due to human nature is a widely-shared view. Marx’s response would be that what we consider “human nature” is actually socially constructed, itself a product of the material and ideological forces of capitalism. As we’ll discuss over the course of the semester, other sociological theorists share this general perspective.

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