Sociology 2240E Lecture Notes - Nerd, Analgesic, Dialectic

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16 Nov 2012
Lecture 3
Industrial Revolution
- During the 1780s-1820s, Britain and then Europe went through a period of
huge technological and social change
- The rise of mechanization
- Made mass-production possible
- Had competition of mass-production globally (ex. Russian vs. American)
- Small workshops and workers were quickly put out of business by the new
oAs a result, people became factory workers
Background to Marx
- Born in Trier, Germany, to an (ex-)Jewish middle-class family
oIn Germany Jewish people were banned from getting any prestigious
job so his father converted to Lutheran Protestantism, becoming an
- He left for university but was booted out a year later for basically being a
badass sex, fighting, all that fun stuff
- He left to the same university that Hegel attended
oThere he got interested in philosophy and there he read about Hegel
oMarx was only 19 at the time
- He was a journalist for a newspaper in Cologne
oHe lost his job for supporting workers
oHe was fired because of the secret police
- Basically Marx was an academic but also a badass and not a nerd
Marx’s Refutation of Hegel
- Marx argues that it is not thought that creates the world, but it is the world that
creates thought
- What is thought in a social/human world?
oDoes it make the abstract real, or is it the real made abstract?
oWhat kind of power does thought have?
- How can thought be valid if our minds are biased by our society?
oOur world isn’t free from pressure and it’s a mistake to think this way
Marx contra Hegel on ‘reality’
- Hegel says that the idea is a guiding force and an explanation for the social
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