Category Archives: Marxism

Rich House, Poor House – Spreading the Myth of Meritocracy

In this Channel 5 series, one family in the ‘wealthiest 10%’ of Britain swap lives for a week with a family in the ‘poorest 10% of Britain’. As I see it this programme performs an ‘ideological control function’ – spreading … Continue reading

Posted in Marxism, Sociology on TV | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Functionalist and Marxist Perspectives on Education: What’s the Difference?

Functionalists have a very general analysis of the role of education in society, simply looking at how it contributes to the maintenance of social order, whereas Marxists analyse the role of education by focusing on how it performs different functions … Continue reading

Posted in education, Functionalism, Marxism | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Capitalist Mode of Production

Understanding the Capitalist Mode of Production is crucial to an understanding of both Modernisation Theory and Dependency Theory – I thought the passage below did a nice job of summarizing what the ‘capitalist mode of production’ is. A a special … Continue reading

Posted in Book summaries, Marxism | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

What is Alienation?

Working definition: the separation or estrangement of human beings from some essential aspect of their nature or from society, often resulting in feelings of powerlessness or helplessness. Today, the concept of alienation has become part of ordinary language, much used … Continue reading

Posted in Marxism, Sociological concepts | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

The Illusion of the Equality of Opportunity

Marxist sociologists Bowles and Gintis argue that capitalist societies are not meritocratic. Against Functionalists, they argue that it is not the amount of ability and effort an individual puts into their education that determines how well they do, but rather … Continue reading

Posted in education, Marxism | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Goldman Sachs Worried About Rising Wages….

In this recent post ‘ America is getting a raise and Goldman Sachs is freaking out about it ‘ Nick Casella cites an extract from investment bank Goldman Sachs’ daily newsletter ‘ Global Markets Daily’ which indicates that they think rising … Continue reading

Posted in Marxism, Transnational corporations | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Bowles and Gintis: The Correspondence Principle

Marxists sociologists Bowles and Gintis (1976) argue that the main function of education in capitalist societies is the reproduction of labour power. They see the education system as being subservient to and performing functions for the Bourgeoisie, the capitalist class … Continue reading

Posted in education, Marxism | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Why workers aren’t benefiting from the automation of jobs…

The increasing automation of jobs could (should?) result in us all working less – but instead, most of us seem to working just as longer hours as ever, why is this – a little dose of Marxism actually goes a … Continue reading

Posted in Marxism, Work | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Philip Green, the Collapse of BHS and the Continued Relevance of Marxist Theory

This is a useful documentary on the role of billionaire Philip Green in the  collapse of British Home Stores, which demonstrates the relevance of some key concepts within Marxism. British Home Stores was one of the best known high street retail … Continue reading

Posted in Marxism | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Zygmunt Bauman’s Liquid Times – A Summary

Zygmunt Bauman is one of the world’s leading sociologists. He is particularly interested in how the west’s increasing obsession with ‘individualism’ actually prevents the individual from being free in any meaningful sense of the word. In  ‘Liquid Times (2007), Bauman … Continue reading

Posted in Book summaries, Consumerism, Culture and Identity, Globalisation, Marxism, Postmodernism and Late Modernsim, Social Theory (A2) | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment