Marx 's Theory Of Alienation Essay

1914 Words Mar 2nd, 2015 8 Pages
The theory of alienation is ‘the intellectual construct in which Marx displays the devastating effect of capitalist production on human beings, on their physical and mental states and on the social processes of which they are a part’ (Ollman, 1996). Marx’s theory is based on the observation that within the capitalist mode of production, workers invariably lose determination of their lives by being deprived of the right to regard themselves as the director of their actions. Alienation refers to the social alienation of people from aspects of their human nature and can be defined as a condition whereby individuals are governed by institutes of their own creation in capitalist society such as; religion, the state and economy, all of which are interdependent. As expressed in the writings of Marx, alienation is a systematic consequence of capitalism. The theory of alienation argues that workers are disenchanted with their work because it is controlled and supervised by the bourgeoisie, who own the means of production and as a result, alienates workers. The forms of alienation differ for each class because their position and style of life differ, and, as expected, the proletariats affliction is the most severe’. (Coser, 1977:50-53).

Marx theory can also be expressed as historical materialism, which suggests that changes in society are directly linked to the infrastructure. Marx believed that history has been made up of different epochs ranging from primitive communism,…

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