Karl Marx Class Conflict Theory | Karl Marx Bourgeoisie and Proletariat
Marxism Conflict Theory and Social Class
What is Karl Marx’s Conflict Theory?
Karl Marx’s Conflict Theory is a theory about how people within societies fight for power. Karl Marx’s conflict theory is a theory that explains the struggles between social classes. He believed that society was fueled by class struggle, which would lead to issues like economic exploitation, political oppression, and cultural hegemony.
The conflict theory is a perspective that focuses on the social, economic, and political aspects of society. It was developed by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels in 1859 as a response to the Industrial Revolution, which led to an increase in class inequality.
There are two main types of conflict theory:
- Feminist theories.
Karl Marx Social Class
Karl Marx Social Class argues that there are two different types of groups:
- The wealthy who control resources and means of production (making them the bourgeoisie)
- The lower-class workers or proletariat do not have access to these resources (and use their skills in exchange for wages).
These two groups are constantly vying for dominance over one another because each wants what they don’t have: Wealth. This type of struggle can lead to economic exploitation, political oppression.
Karl Marx’s ideology is all about how society plays a huge role in shaping our identities.
Society has this tremendous power to shape who we are and what we do, whether or not it’s intentional. If you think about it, everything from who your parents were to where you grew up will impact you, which may be difficult for some people to comprehend.
Karl Marx believed that the bourgeoisie had complete control over the proletariat class and exploited them because they needed labor to create a profit to maintain their dominant position in society. He argued that capitalist societies like America would continue as long as no revolutionary force intervened against the system, which he thought could happen via communist revolutions by disgruntled workers or through political action led by the educated.
Karl Marx’s theory of conflict was that workers have only two possible ways to use their labor: exploitative and nonexploitative in the capitalist system. Exploitative labor is when the laborer does not own what he produces. And nonexploitative work is when workers own what they produce because they are self-employed or working on commission rather than a wage.
Karl Marx’s theory of conflict was that there were two types of people under capitalism: exploiters, who are capitalists, and exploited, which are laborers. An exploiter has control over the laborer while performing less work than them – this means that if you’re an employer with 10 employees, for example, 9 out of 10 would be considered to be exploited.
Karl Marx Bourgeoisie and Proletariat
Karl Marx’s focus on class struggle is best explained by examining the two main protagonists: the bourgeoisie and proletariat.
Karl Marx Bourgeoisie
Definition of bourgeoisie
The bourgeoisie can be defined as the upper class in society or capitalist class and wealthy industry owners who exploit workers for their own gain. They tend to live off of surplus-value–the difference between what employees produce and how much they’re paid–and often enjoy many luxuries that come with being a member of society’s ruling elite.
Class of Capitalist
With the industrial revolution of the early 19th century, modern production methods were introduced that were resource-intensive and highly scalable. Automation, production, and quality improved, and the employment of the proletariat became more lucrative than ever before. This created a new class of entrepreneurs, creating levels of wealth traditionally associated with royalty.
The merchant class was much more productive than the peasant class and profited from hiring the workforce. They were also able to avoid turning all their money over to the feudal lords because of their guilds’ political influence.
A class of highly educated individuals who have remained engaged in solely intellectual pursuits throughout their lives, such as scholars, musicians, authors, and journalists. The bourgeoisie tends to be educated and also considers itself to be educated. Intelligence
Political Class of the 18-19th century
The American and French revolutions of the late 18th century overthrew slavery and monarchy regimes. The bourgeoisie party has begun to vigorously seek formal and informal political influence and policies on free markets, free trade, and property rights.
Another road to the economic status of the bourgeoisie is to conquer markets with new goods, business models, marketing methods, or cost-cutting techniques.
The Petite Bourgeoisie
The petty bourgeoisie is the lowest economic class to be called the bourgeoisie. They own money, which raises their quality of life, but they also have to work for a living.
For example, a professional with a relatively good salary who owns inventories and rental properties.
Karl Marx Proletariat
Definition of Proletariat
Meanwhile, the working-class can be seen as people without any means to support themselves because they don’t have access to things like food and shelter on their own terms. For these reasons, Karl Marx believed the proletariat needed to rise up against the bourgeois in order to create a utopia where everyone has equal access to wealth.
- Blue-collar worker– Working-class person who performs manual labor
- Peasant – Pre-industrial agricultural laborer or farmer with limited land ownership
Marxist Bourgeoisie Vs. Proletariat
|The bourgeoisie is the upper class in society.||The proletariat is the lower class in society.|
|They own and control the means of production, which is a fancy way to say they have money and power.||The proletariat (which is also sometimes called “the working class”) are those who work for them.|
|They include the rich, politicians, those in power.||This includes factory workers, agricultural laborers, domestic servants, etc., but not just people who work in offices or other white-collar jobs.|
|The bourgeois is usually educated.||The proletariat is usually uneducated.|
|The bourgeoisie had the money and not working for wages. Consider exploiter.||The proletariat can be translated to “those who work for a wage.”Considered exploited.|
Conflict Theory in Education
What is the example of conflict theory in education?
Conflict theory in education is the idea that schools are designed to reproduce social inequality and maintain the status quo. It is the idea that schools are designed to meet the needs of those who have power, not the needs of those who do not.
Conflict theorists argue that schools perpetuate a social class system by giving students from wealthier backgrounds better opportunities than poorer ones.
Example of conflict theory in education?
The conflict theory in education suggests that teachers and administrators have certain goals for students, which may not coincide with what students want.
One example of this is tracking students based on their academic abilities and then providing them with different curricula.
Another example of conflict theory in education is when a teacher wants a student to learn how to read, but the student does not want to do so.
Conflict Theory in Sociology
What is the conflict theory of sociology?
The conflict theory of sociology is a sociological perspective that views society as an ongoing struggle between competing groups. It is a sociological perspective that focuses on the social, economic, and political aspects of society. It argues that societies are inherently unstable because they contain conflicting interests.
This theory suggests that the majority group in any given society will dominate and exploit minority groups to maintain their power, often with violence or other coercion forms.
In this way, the dominant group oppresses the minority group by using its power to take resources from them and keep them disadvantaged. It’s based on the idea that societies are made up of different classes, including those who have power and those who don’t
The conflict theory argues that social order and stability are created when groups with conflicting interests balance each other out. This theory was first proposed by Karl Marx in the 19th century to describe capitalism’s dynamics, but it can be applied to any society.
Conflict Theory in Sociology Example
Examples include racism, sexism, homophobia.
Conflict Theory in Sports
What is the conflict theory in Sports?
Conflict theory focuses on how unequal distribution of power within society leads to conflict and various forms of violence. Theorists who support this approach believe that these inequalities are inevitable in any society because they arise from differences between people’s beliefs about what is right or wrong.
The conflict theory in sports is the idea that there is a constant battle between the owners of professional sports leagues and their players, with each side trying to gain more power than the other.
Example conflict theory in Sport
This theory states that owners want to keep salaries low to maximize profits, while players want higher salaries to earn enough money for themselves and their families.
Owners also try to limit player movement by signing contracts with teams or leagues that require them not to be traded without consent from the team or league and preventing free agency by limiting who can offer what kind of contract.
Players often respond by boycotting games if they feel like their rights are being violated.
Conflict Theory in Family
Conflict theory is a perspective that focuses on the inherent conflicts between people and groups. It proposes that society is in a constant state of struggle, where one group’s success comes at another’s expense.
This theory views the family as an arena for competition between two genders and patriarch/matriarch, with each class struggling to maintain its privileged position and status.
Marxists have seen the family as a social structure that benefits men more than women, enabling men to retain a position of control. The traditional system of the family in most cultures is patriarchal, leading to gender inequality. Males tend to have more control, and females tend to have less power.
Example conflict theory in Family.
In the dichotomy of family marriage, many couples believe that there is a disparity in day-to-day contact within the partnership’s confines. The persistence of that kind of imbalance will lead to marital conflict.
Conflict Theory in Criminology
What is the conflict theory in criminology?
The conflict theory in criminology is a social theory based on society’s idea as an ongoing struggle between two groups: the haves and have-nots. This theory states that crime occurs when there are no other options for people who want to change their situation.
Those with less power will commit crimes because they feel like it’s their only way to get what they need or want.
Conflict Theory vs. Functionalism
Compare and contrast Conflict theory vs. Functionalism.
The focus of the conflict theory is on how power struggles shape society and individuals. In contrast, functionalism focuses on the way that society functions as a whole to create stability and order.
This means that for conflict theorists, social problems are due to inequalities in power between groups. At the same time, functionalists believe they are caused by something not working properly within an individual or group’s function in society.
Conflict Theory Advantages and Disadvantages/Criticisms
Conflict Theory Advantages/Strengths
- Conflict theory is a sociological perspective that emphasizes the conflict’s social, political, and economic aspects. It can be used to analyze any type of conflict, including individual conflicts and international wars.
- The theory views society as an ongoing struggle between two or more groups with competing interests.
- The primary assumption of conflict theory is that society is in a constant state of tension. Conflict theorists believe that the root cause of social problems is inequality and power imbalances.
- It assumes that people have conflicting interests, which leads to conflict, which is often true.
- It allows us to understand the perspectives of different groups.
- It helps us better understand social inequality.
- Conflict theory can help explain how people’s actions are shaped by their environment and experiences.
Weaknesses /Criticism of Conflict Theory
What is some criticism of conflict Theory?
- The theory is based on the assumption that conflict is inevitable and natural, so it does not provide any solutions to resolving conflicts.
- It assumes that society can be divided into two groups: haves and have-nots, which ignores the existence of a middle class.
- Conflict theorists often ignore power differentials in society. It is difficult to apply conflict theory in the real world.
- It does not account for power dynamics between groups.
- Conflicts are usually resolved through compromise, and this does not often happen in reality.
- Conflict theory is not a universally accepted approach to understanding society.
- Critics of conflict theory believe that the power structures in place are more nuanced than those described by conflict theorists.