Classical marxist view of religion

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  • Classical Marxist view of religon
    • religion is the opium of the people, eases tension and pain, mind altering effect
    • religion is an ideological illusion- blinds people of oppression, perpetuating capitalism and strengthening the false class consciousness
    • Ideological state apparatus
      • maintains dominant ideology
      • compensation
        • makes life bearable, soothes pain, promises reward and punishment
          • bible extracts, hindu caste system, industrialisation and church going
      • social control
        • makes proletariat conform, distorts reality
          • divine right of kings, hindu caste, industrialisation, church rel gov
      • legitimation of authority
        • justifies inequality, respect for hierarchy and power
          • bible extract, divine right of kings
    • still relevant
      • most oppressed are most religious, still house of lords, oder are more religious closer to death
    • not relevant
      • not everyone gets sunday off, less social control
    • strengths
      • shows how religion can be used as old of oppression, still applies to many societies
    • weaknesses
      • ignores the positive functions of religion, underestimates the power of the poor


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