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09/23/2009
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Modern theories of culture and society: Marx’s relevance

  1. Introduction
  2. The primary goal of a capitalist
  3. Origin of the family: Engels
  4. The myth of the opt-out revolution
  5. The highest stratum of capitalism
  6. Side effect of the capitalist system in Marx's view
  7. Conclusion

Although Karl Marx’s philosophies were formed in and about industrial Europe in the late 1800’s, his fundamental ideas are still relevant to capitalist countries today, both on microscopic and macroscopic levels. The Marxist interpretations of how the capitalist system affects global trade, the structure and labor division of the family, and the relationship between workers and their work hold especially true.

The primary goal of a capitalist is to increase profit by reducing the costs of production. Since the costs of production include the wages of workers, it makes good sense to squeeze as much labor out of workers as one can while putting as little money into them as possible. When the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) came into effect in 1994, American businesses were allowed to move the production of their goods to Mexico, leaving American workers jobless and paying their Mexican replacements much less than the Americans had been getting.

[...] Under the capitalist system, a capitalist purchases not products made by workers but the labor power of a worker, gaining ownership of not only what the worker makes but everything the worker will ever make. As a result, workers feel alienated from products they never own or appreciate. In 1981, the Professional Air Controllers Organization (PATCO) went on strike, seeking better pay, better conditions, and a 32-hour workweek. Since a savvy capitalist pays its workers only enough to keep them alive, working, and producing more workers, President Reagan fired the strikers, more than 11,000 air traffic controllers. [...]


[...] Modern theories of culture and society: Marx’s relevance Although Karl Marx’s philosophies were formed in and about industrial Europe in the late 1800’s, his fundamental ideas are still relevant to capitalist countries today, both on microscopic and macroscopic levels. The Marxist interpretations of how the capitalist system affects global trade, the structure and labor division of the family, and the relationship between workers and their work hold especially true. Given that the Communist Manifesto was written in 1848, Marx’s description of the expansion of the global economy that has progressed over the last several years seems almost prophetic: need of a constantly expanding market for its products chases the bourgeoisie over the whole surface of the globe. [...]

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