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To What Extent Can Blauner's Operationalisation of Alienation Be Regarded as Marxian - Coursework Example

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To what extent can Blauner’s operationalization of alienation be regarded as Marxian? Name: Institution: Introduction Division of labor refers to the breaking down of work into several tasks, each performed by a specialized worker. To Durkheim, division of labor was positive in that it gave an equal chance to all members in the society to participate in its development, which also meant, that there were enough resources to go around…
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To What Extent Can Blauners Operationalisation of Alienation Be Regarded as Marxian
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Download file to see previous pages This in turn, makes that worker the property of his employer, dehumanizing him/her and resulting in alienation of the worker (Haralambos & Holborn 2008). Alienation according to Marx is the estrangement, or separation, of humans from their essential human nature due to the capitalistic system. For Marx, what distinguishes humans from animals is life-activity (Haralambos & Holborn 2008). Humans make their work the central activity of their lives, taking pride in it and going beyond satisfaction of physical needs. This is demonstrated by the fact that contrary to animals, we produce much more than we need immediately and, also strive to attain beauty and perfection in work produced (Noon & Blyton 2007). The capitalistic system deprives humans of this by necessitating that a person sells their labor to a buyer. The buyer thus owns not only the person’s labor, but also their will, since the worker now has to bend according to the buyer’s will (Watson 2011). Alienation thus occurs since the person is not only separated from the act of production and, also the eventual product of his/her labor (Woodward 2005). There are four types of alienation according to Marx. ...
Alienation from the labor process occurred because the worker had no say over the conditions they worked in. Individualism and creativity was lost as a worker became just a cog in the industrial machine (Watson 2011). The interest of the capitalist to maximize profits came at a cost to the worker because they could be overworked and underpaid, seeing as they technically belonged to their bosses (Noon & Blyton 2007). Alienation from fellow human beings came about due to the emergence of a class system as a result of division of labor. The workers saw their employers as exploiters and tormentors, since their agony was what gave them their comforts and pleasure (Haralambos & Holborn 2008). The elimination of contact with the makers of the products we use every day also resulted in alienation. Alienation from human nature occurred due to the workers being deprived of what made them human, that is, the enjoyment of their work and the fruit of their labor (Woodward 2005). Robert Blauner’s tools for measuring alienation were the amount of control one has over their work; the sense of purpose in it; the degree of social integration with co-workers, and lastly, the degree of involvement with the work (Haralambos & Holborn 2008). Blauner’s four dimensions of alienation can be explained as such: Powerlessness- if a worker cannot control important aspects of his work, he can fail to achieve fulfillment in their personal lives. Meaninglessness; according to Marxian theory, work becomes forced labor (Woodward 2005). Blauner tries to establish the significance of the work they do to the worker, that is, whether they feel they are allowed creative license and individualism in their work. Isolation and identity is another issue especially if a ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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