Marxism

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  • Created by: ncs1997
  • Created on: 21-05-15 16:41
How is Marxism similar to functionalism?
It sees the harm caused by modern industrial society and the promise of a better world. Also believes it’s possible to see the world scientifically and use the knowledge to find the better world– scientific socialism.
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How is Marxism different to functionalists?
The progress isn’t a smooth and gradual change, it actually gets worse (capitalism) before it gets better (communism).
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What is historical materialism?
The view that humans have material needs and use the means of production to achieve them. In early history, this was through social relations of production, but now it’s between the 2 classes, the upper and the lower.
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What are the 3 historical class societies?
Ancient society – exploitation of slaves by their owners. Feudal society – exploitation of serfs legally tied to the land. Capitalist society – exploitation of free wage labourers by the owners of the means of production.
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What are the 3 distinctive features of capitalism?
The proletariat are legally free. The ownership of the means of production becomes concentrated through competition. It continually expands the means of production looking for profit which results in class polarisation.
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What is class consciousness?
Capitalism causes its own downfall by pushing the proletariat together and then they develop a consciousness of their own economic and political interests and become aware of the need to overthrow capitalism.
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How does ideology affect capitalism?
The class that owns the means of production also owns the means on mental production. The dominant ideas in society are the ideas of the economically dominant class. This fosters a false consciousness.
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For what 2 reasons does alienation reach its peak under capitalism?
Workers are completely separated from and have no control over the forces of production. The division of labour is at its most intense and detailed: the worker is reduced to an unskilled labourer.
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What 3 things does Marx believe will be achieved through a revolution by the majority against the minority?
It will abolish the state and create a classless communist society. Abolish exploitation, replace private ownership with social ownership and production to satisfy human needs. End alienation.
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What are 3 class-based criticisms of Marx?
He has a simplistic, one-dimensional view of inequality and sees class as the only important division. Marx’s 2 class model is also simplistic and ignores other classes. Class polarisation hasn't actually occurred.
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In what other way is Marx criticised?
It is economically deterministic and fails to recognise that humans have free will. Similarly it neglects the role of ideas and Marx’s predictions about revolution haven’t actually come true.
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What are the 2 different types Marxism?
Humanistic or critical Marxism - some similarities with action theories and interpretive sociology. Scientific or structuralist Marxism – a structural approach and has similarities with positivist sociology.
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How is Gramsci’s hegemony explained and in what 2 ways does he see the ruling class as maintaining their dominance over society?
Hegemony is the ideological and moral leadership of society to explain how the ruling class maintains its position. The ruling class use coercion through the police and consent by using ideas to convince the lower classes.
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Why will the hegemony of the ruling class never be complete?
The ruling class are a minority and so they need to create a power bloc by making alliances with other classes. The proletariat have a dual consciousness and their ideas are influenced by their material conditions.
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How could the working class have a revolution?
The proletariat would have to construct a counter-hegemonic bloc and produce their own organic intellectuals. This would win ideological leadership from the ruling class.
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In what way is Gramsci criticised?
He over emphasises the role of ideas and under emphasises the role of both state coercion and economic factors.
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How do structuralist Marxists see society?
It is social structures that shape history and these are the proper subject of scientific enquiry.
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What 3 levels does Althusser argue capitalism have?
The economic level - involves producing something to satisfy a need. The political level - all forms of organisation. The ideological level - involving the ways that people see themselves and their world.
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What are the 2 state apparatuses?
The repressive state apparatus is the armed bodies of men that coerce the working class into compliance. Ideological state apparatuses e.g. the media, manipulate the working class into accepting capitalism.
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How does Althusser criticise humanism?
He believes our sense of free will is an illusion, therefore meaning we can't use it to change society. In reality we are merely products of social structures that determine everything about us.
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How is Althusser criticised?
Although he rejects economic determinism, he simply replaces it with a more complex 'structural determinism'. This 'scientific' approach discourages political activism. Thompson claims he ignores active struggles of working class can change society.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

The progress isn’t a smooth and gradual change, it actually gets worse (capitalism) before it gets better (communism).

Back

How is Marxism different to functionalists?

Card 3

Front

The view that humans have material needs and use the means of production to achieve them. In early history, this was through social relations of production, but now it’s between the 2 classes, the upper and the lower.

Back

Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4

Front

Ancient society – exploitation of slaves by their owners. Feudal society – exploitation of serfs legally tied to the land. Capitalist society – exploitation of free wage labourers by the owners of the means of production.

Back

Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5

Front

The proletariat are legally free. The ownership of the means of production becomes concentrated through competition. It continually expands the means of production looking for profit which results in class polarisation.

Back

Preview of the back of card 5
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