Exploration of capitalism for different sociological perspectives

Document Type:Thesis

Subject Area:Sociology

Document 1

They believe the system has led to class struggles, inequality, anomies, and social problems. To that end, the aim of this paper is to compare and contrast how Marx, Durkheim, Simmel, and Weber explain and analyze capitalist society. Karl Marx users his theory to describe a scenario in which the society has accepted the economic status of an individual as a defining factor for who they are. He viewed that social classification based on financial status allowed some to control the rest especially those that were of lower income. Marx holds a strong view that the state should only monitor resources. In refuting the capitalist ideas, he created the concept of a general welfare (Ritzer, 60). He, however, underlined the effectiveness of a socialist economy on the perfection of a government. For his ideas to be implemented and work efficiently, he assumed that an active government, free of corruption and without any personal agendas would be the only way to ensure the shortcomings of capitalism did not affect his socialist point of view.

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In addition, Marx introduced the idea of alienated labor. The idea had come up before the introduction of social theories, but it also had the same framework. With the rising suicidal cases at that time in Europe, he concluded that suicide was caused by lack social integration and acceptance of a person in the society (Farganis, 143). He developed four typologies of suicide; anomic, egoistic, altruistic and fatalistic suicide. In relation to this video, it was an anomic suicide which is as a result of weakened social cohesion during economic turmoil. Durkheim attributes this to a culture of consumerism. Consumerism is a widely dealt upon topic in our modern world. An intelligent choice is therefore of great importance when deciding what to consume and what not to. Consumerism has also been driven from a need to lead a happy life.

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It is often assumed that this will easily be attained through purchase of expensive materialistic goods or even services. Examples are how people will purchase very expensive cars with extremely high maintenance cost. This hence leads to more spending and an even greater need for spending. Displacement of people because of political influence is becoming serious. He stipulates that the “politics of recognition displaces the politics of redistribution”, and this very true (Ritzer, 89). Most of the powerful politicians in a particular society are so influential such that they dictate almost everything that is within their territory. As such, achieving balance or justice to all is unlikely because hatred based on race; gender, social class, and ethnicity continue to dominate. What should be understood is that justice is determined from the actions of human beings because from their conscious thoughts, they can distinguish between what is good and bad.

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As such society is divided into a hierarchy of class power, social status and political power. Class power arises out of an unequal society, for example, poor people lack access to quality healthcare and education since they can’t afford it. Social status arises when one is viewed as superior than the other in society, for instance, a doctor and plumber do not hold the same status. Finally, political power determines the hierarchal system since it entails influence over a society’s legislation. Weber believes capitalism has led to a culture of individualism. Sociological Theory, 9th ed. NY: McGraw Hill. ISBN: 978-0-07-802701-7 (2014).

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