POLSCI 1G06 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Common Ownership, Elite Theory, Bourgeoisie

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Political Science 1G06 2014 Lecture 4b Marxism
What causes inequality? How and why does the specific form of inequality
change over time?
Karl Marx:
Context: 19th century Britain and the Industrial Revolution
- New Products – iron, railways, steam-power
- New forms of work – the factory
- New sources of social power – manufacturers
-Marx asks the question:
- How did this economic order come about – what caused the
economy to shift from feudalism to capitalism?
- Is the Free market, Capitalism, a just order given the severe
conditions experienced by the Working Class?
- What possibility does the future hold for change?
- Historical research led him to conclude that there are fundamental
laws of history.
- These laws can be discovered through an examination of the
-What is the essential nature of the Economy: Economic
production consists of two principle elements:
- 1. The means of production – The material part of the economy
i.e. tools, technology, etc
- 2. The relations of production – The relationship of human
beings to the material part of the economy
- Human beings have different relationships to the material part of
the economy
- Society is divided into those who own Means of Production and
those who do not
- A CLASS is a set of people who share the same objective
relationship to the Means of Production
- In Capitalism, those who own the Means of Production are called
the Bourgeoisie, those who do not are called the Proletariat
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