Aim of the session is to:Introduce you to theSociological Perspectiveof Marxism & considerthe key principles &Concepts underpinningthis theory.
Key concepts we will be considering:Conflict Surplus ValueCapitalism Means of productionProletariat Economic baseBourgeoisie Super structureIdeology ExploitedIdeological StateApparatusCommunism
By the end of the lesson you should all:•Have a basic knowledge & understandingof Marx’s social theory•Be able to summarize the Marxistperspective of a capitalist society•Identify key terminology and start to beable to spell & define these key concepts.
Brief clip introducingsocial theory from Marxhttp://youtu.be/1ztVeUX8Hpo
MarxismLike the Functionalist perspective, Marxism is astructural theoryMeaning that they both believe that we are born into aSociety that has existing rules & patterns of behaviour thatshape how we behave & live our lives.In essence, we have to learn how to join in properly throughThe process of socialisation.
However........Where Marxism differs from Functionalism is todo with what they say society’s rules are basedon.Functionalist argue that society is built on avalue consensus or agreementWhereas Marx argues that society is based onconflict & exploitation
This is Karl Marx: The father of the MarxistPerspective & an important thinker of moderntimes• Marx basically arguesthat sinceindustrialisation, societyis in a state of conflictbetween the rich & thepoor because these socialgroups have unequalpower.
These 2 social groups are calledThe Bourgeoisie&The ProletariatRuling Class & owners of the modesof productionWorking classAdd these to your handouts
According to Marx, societyhas passed through severalperiods in which differenteconomic systems ormethods of production havebeen dominant.
Marx argues that the final stage of developmentwhich happened alongside the industrialisationprocess, led to the creation of a capitalistsociety .This was because the methods of productionmoved from being agricultural to factory &Industry based.
So – how have we ended up withCAPITALISM?Marx proposed the idea that oursociety has gone through thefollowing stages:PRIMITIVE COMMUNISMSLAVERYFEUDALISMCAPITALISM
Industrialisation meant that power inSociety fell into the hands of the wealthy,Because they were the ones who ownedMost of the land, could afford machinery,Build factories & own big businesses &they also employed the people to work forthem.
Capitalism explained in short:We live in a Capitalist society, meaning that our economy is basedon business, trade & consumption with an aim at making big profitsThose who are poorer (Proletariat working class) & have limited accessto owning the modes of production (Factories, Mills, businesses) areforced into working for the owners of the means of production(The Bourgeoisie) who have wealth, money, are business men or amembers of the government).Although the workers receive a wage for producing the goods thatconsumers need & want, the goods are sold at a profit, for more than itCost to make, and this surplus value goes straight back intoThe pockets of the ‘fat cats’
Starting to define Key concepts :Conflict Surplus ValueCapitalism Means of productionProletariat Economic baseBourgeoisie Super structureIdeology ExploitedIdeological StateApparatusCommunismAs we go through thenext slides add definitionsfor these
Well firstly, industrialisation meant thatfamilies no longer worked on their ownland or produced their own goodsAnd because they couldn’t competeWith the means of mass productionThey didn’t have enough incomeComing in and so they had to seekEmployment elsewhere in towns for thebourgeoisie.
This meant that peoplehad no choice but towork for the CapitalistBourgeoisie & thereforehad to accept their newplace & role in life.
But how do the capitalistsmake sure that everyoneConforms to this newStatus as subservient orunequal ?
From a Marxist perspective, the majorStructures or social institutions in society(law, religion, Education, The family, mediaetc)Play a key role in shaping our beliefs &limiting our behaviours in order to benefitCapitalism & maintain the separationbetween the Bourgeoisie & the Proletariatthrough the process of.........................
Why can’t we reject these messages?Add definition to worksheet
This ideology istransmittedthrough variousIdeological StateApparatus
Ideological State ApparatusA tool or part of society which isused to encourage people toaccept the values of the rulingclass in order to maintaincapitalismAdd definition to worksheet
Ideological State Apparatus: or theinstitutions of the super structure• Education System• Instilled in you that youneed to havequalifications in orderto get a good job.• The hidden curriculumteaches you to manageyour time, abide byrules, wear a uniform &comply.• Church/religion• There is a God & if youaccept your fate nowyou will be rewardedrichly in your after life.• It is God’s will
Ideological state apparatus•The Family•The Mass Media•Politics
ConsumerismMaterialistic valuesNeed to have the latestgadgetsDesigner labelsPressure to be attractiveObedience & Loyalty
In essence we are conditioned(through the various ideological stateApparatus) into believing that we needthe goods that Capitalism produces &can only prove our worth & status byworking hard & being able to havematerial goods around us.We are in fact feeding capitalism &keeping the Rich even richer.
Marx believes that the only way to end this ideologyis for the workers to revolt & to see a return toCommunism: A system were everyone is equal &works Together for the benefit of society as a whole.Add definition to worksheet
We would then have asociety where everythingwould be owned andcontrolled by the people ¬ just by the wealthy elitefewIntroducing the smurfs
Finishing up our Key concepts:Conflict Surplus ValueCapitalism Means of productionProletariat Economic baseBourgeoisie Super structureIdeology ExploitedIdeological StateApparatusCommunism
It’s a Structuralism approachwhich does illustrate how themajor institutions are linked. Emphasises consumerismwhich is relevant in today’spostmodern society Marxism helps to explainhow the values & ideology ofthe Bourgeoisie are passed on.Strengths of Marxism….
Functionalists criticiseMarxism for over-emphasisingconflict when there must beharmony and shared values forsocial order to be possible. It is seen as economicallydeterministic; everythingrevolves around money. Classic Marxism has ignoredthe role of women in society. What revolution?? Russia andChina have actually becomecapitalist & turned their backs oncommunism. Society doesn’t alwaysoperate in the interests of theruling class.
Plenary Tasks:Complete all of the taskson your worksheet by theend of the lesson & learn theNew definitions of Marxist keyConcepts for next lesson