Marx is the major proponent of Marxism, a method of socioeconomic analysis. Judged by this definition itself, it is plain that Marxism was linked to economism if not something that touches on economics. Through an analysis of Marxism and the bourgeois thinkers way of thinking, a comparison of these two thoughts will clearly show that Marx and his theory was in no way different to what bourgeois thinkers argued. The effect of this will be to show that Marx was indeed guilty of economism. Just to reiterate, Marxism was a method of socioeconomic analysis. Its proponents were Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels.
Marxism analyzed relations between social classes as well as societal conflict. To achieve this, he used a materialist view of historical development, in addition to a dialectical perception of social transformation. The question Marxism hoped or sought to answer was why there were differences in social classes in the society in terms of why were some people filthy rich yet others on the extreme end of poverty. To find the answers to this question, he, therefore, focused on the social and economic relations. Marx noticed that there was a struggle between the two main social classes in a capitalist society. While the capitalists owned productive resources, the workers or proletariat, who were on the other end of the social class had to tirelessly work in order to survive (Ollman, 2016).
Bourgeoisie is mainly a social order that was, ironically, a construct of Karl Marx. Ironically in the sense that he is said to have criticized bourgeoisie thinkers yet he is among those behind this way of thought. The term bourgeoisie is related to materialism which is a determined effort for respectability. Bourgeoisie is a socially defined class that refers to people with a certain cultural and financial capital that gives them the right to belong to the upper middle or upper middle class. From the Marxist philosophy, the bourgeoisie is the social class that came to own the means of production during the industrialization period and whose major concern was for the acquisition of property and preservation of capital.
Notably, there is a link between Marxism and the argument behind Bourgeoisie thinking in that Marxism was interested in a socioeconomic analysis of two social classes and the conflict therein, one of those classes being Bourgeoisie that is behind the Bourgeoisie thinking. Therefore, to further answer the question whether Marx was guilty of economism it is significant that we touch on what economist entailed.
Economism basically is a theory that regards economics as the main factor in society. Usually the main aim of a political group or a trade union is mainly to improve the material living standards of its members. With this in mind, society is growing as the local leaders alongside society members are constantly facing a challenge of the need to balance the fiscal, social, economic and environmental goals (Burdge, 1995). A socio-economic impact assessment usually examines how a proposed development will change the lives of current and also the future residents of a community. Socio-economic impact assessment also provides foundation for assessing more importantly the cumulative impacts of the development on both a communitys social and economic resources.
In conclusion, it is evident from the preceding discussion that Karl Marx and Bourgeoisie thinking are similar in that they both had a socio-economic idea in mind. As a matter of fact, Marxism was the chief contributor to the term Bourgeoisie and what it came to represent. As highlighted from the economism argument, it can, therefore, be confidently stated that Marxism was indeed guilty of economism.
Burdge, R.J. 1995. A Community Guide to Social Impact Assessment. University of Illinois: Urbana.
Ollman, B. 2016. What is Marxism? A Birds-Eye View. Retrieved from HYPERLINK "https://www.nyu.edu/projects/ollman/docs/what_is_marxism.php" https://www.nyu.edu/projects/ollman/docs/what_is_marxism.php
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