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Alienation of Man

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By trixiebear
Words 574
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Alienation occurs when a worker feels his labor is external to him. He feels outside of himself while at work and feels as himself when outside of work. This means that the worker does not feel at home while at work, he feels disconnected. He only feels at home with himself when he is not at work. A worker becomes alienated from his labor and the commodity he is producing when he feels he has no say in the work process. As the worker puts more of himself into the commodity he is making, the more power the commodity begins to have over him. The commodity gains this power because it becoming more valuable, at the same time it is devaluing the worker. The worker puts so much of his time and effort into this commodity that he does not have enough left for himself at the end of the day. The less a worker has for himself, the more animal he becomes. Not only does the worker become more animalistic, there are other ways that a worker can become alienated. Karl Marx identified four aspects of estrangement that come from a worker being alienated. The first two forms deal with the labor process and the object itself. The latter two deal with the worker as a person and his relations. Marx identified the first type of estrangement as the worker being alienated from the work process. This type of alienation comes about when the worker feels he has no say in how his is able to or allowed to work. He is forced to work on his part of the object in a set time frame and is required to do this task repeatedly. The laborer can also then become alienated from the commodity in which he is producing. The worker has no say not only how he is allowed to work, but he also has no control or opinion in what happens to the object once it is out of his hands. In factories, workers are given such small, repetitive tasks to make an object that result in the worker only seeing and contributing to a small part of the overall commodity. This type of work leads to the worker being alienated from his species being. Marx states that the purpose of life is to create useful, essential items for life. The worker becomes alienated when he is forced to create objected that are not only not useful, but in a mass quantity. Finally, the worker is alienated from others. He has given so much to the commodity he is producing and has given so much that he has turned to be an animal that he does not have enough to share with anyone else. Workers are not allowed to socialize with one another, especially in factories. Each is required to do specific tasks within time constraints that it is almost impossible for them to get to know the worker next to them. How did alienation originate? The bourgeoisie wanted a society in which everything could be bought and sold for money. To do this, the majority in society were denied direct access to the means of production and subsistence, thus creating a class of landless laborers who had to submit to a new form of exploitation, wage labor, in order to survive. Capitalism involved a essential change in the relations between men, instruments of production and the materials of production.…...

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