Karl Marx’s Conception of Alienation

Great Piece here on Alienation…

1000-Word Philosophy

Author: Dan Lowe
Category: Social and Political Philosophy
Word Count: 1000

Karl Marx’s thought is wide-ranging and has had a massive influence in, especially, philosophy and sociology. Marx is best known for his two unsparing critiques of capitalism. The first of these critiques maintains that capitalism is essentially alienating. The second of these critiques maintains that capitalism is essentially exploitative.1 This essay focuses specifically on Marx’s theory of alienation, which rests on Marx’s specific claims about both economics and human nature.

Marx’s Analysis of Capitalism

For Marx, the idea of the means of production is a crucial economic category. The means of production include nearly everything needed to produce commodities, including natural resources, factories, and machinery. The key element not included as part of the means of production is labor.2 In a capitalist economy, as opposed to a communist or socialist economy, the means of production are privately owned…

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The alienated consciousness, dehumanized human nature and capitalism

Love this analysis by Brown (1959)

Economic Sociology and Political Economy

alienation work“The alienated consciousness is correlative with a money economy. Its root is the compulsion to work. This compulsion to work subordinates man to things, producing at the same time confusion in the valuation of things and devaluation of the human body. It reduces the drives of the human being to greed and competition… The desire for money takes the place of all genuinely human needs. Thus the apparent accumulation of wealth is really the impoverishment of human nature, and its appropriate morality is the renunciation of human nature and desires – asceticism. The effect is to substitute an abstraction, Homo Economicus, for the concrete totality of human nature, and thus to dehumanize human nature. In this dehumanized human nature man loses contact with his own body, more specifically with his senses, with sensuality and with the pleasure-principle. And this dehumanized human nature produces an inhuman consciousness, whose only…

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Broken Branches

“What if our religion was each other. If our practice was our life. If prayer, our words. What if the temple was the Earth. If forests were our church. If holy water the rivers, lakes, and ocean. What if meditation was our relationships. If the teacher was life. If wisdom was self-knowledge. If love was the center of our being.” ~Ganga White

Deep Souldiving

art1

In the nakedness

Of barren pain

Roots

Reach out

For inner healing.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

“What if our religion was each other. If our practice was our life. If prayer, our words. What if the temple was the Earth. If forests were our church. If holy water the rivers, lakes, and ocean. What if meditation was our relationships. If the teacher was life. If wisdom was self-knowledge. If love was the center of our being.” ~Ganga White

*linocut, by Anita Laurence, Winter II

http://anitalaurence.com.au/?page_id=222

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