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To What Extent Can Blauner's Operationalization of Alienation Be Regarded as Marxist - Coursework Example

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To What Extent Can Blauner’s Operationalization of Alienation Be Regarded As Marxist? Outline Introduction Body Conclusion Introduction Alienation, a term which was first conceptualised by Karl Marx in Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts of 1844 and which literally meant estrangement, was attributed to labour under the capitalist system…
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To What Extent Can Blauners Operationalization of Alienation Be Regarded as Marxist
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To What Extent Can Blauner's Operationalization of Alienation Be Regarded as Marxist

Download file to see previous pages... For him, this feeling of estrangement was because commodities which have value would control and shape the activities of human beings or a belief which was also known as commodity fetishism (Craib: 1997: 35 – 42; Haralambos, 2004: 621 – 623; Slattery, 2003: 14 – 21). On the one hand, for Blauner, alienation was job dissatisfaction. In 1940s, Robert Blauner had examined alienation through the manual workers in the American modern industry (Grint: 1998: 269 – 272). In his effort to link Melvin Seeman’s psychological dimensions of alienation, his operationalization of the concept alienation was very much resembling to that of Marx’s idea of alienation under the capitalist system even though he was not a Marxist. Because of this, Blauner was criticised for using a non – Marxist concept of alienation. In this regard, this paper would aim at figuring out up to what extent is Blauner’s operationalization of alienation regarded as Marxist. Main Body Marx’s idea of alienation under capitalism was comprised by four (4) characteristics. First, he identified that alienation could result from the worker’s alienation from the product of his own labour. It was the case that in capitalism, the worker who produced the product had no longer control over that certain product. The control was owned by the capitalist system which had not only controlled his workers but also had the control over the product of labour of his workers. Second, a worker could be alienated from the very act of production itself for the reason that this very act of production was something in exchange of profit through wages instead of his social needs. Third, a worker could be alienated from his very own self being the producer of the product, as a human being. He, then, happened to see himself doing meaningless activities because he was reduced to a machine working for survival. Forth, a worker could be alienated from the other workers. In a capitalist society, social relations happened to be displaced for labour was something that was reduced to a commodity needed to be exchanged in the market (Craib: 1997: 35 – 42; Slattery, 2003: 14 – 21). On the one hand, alienation for Blauner was something that was not a result of the capitalist relations but was something that was attributed to job dissatisfaction. For him, this concept comprised four (4) dimensions such as powerlessness, meaninglessness, isolation and self – estrangement. The first sign of alienation, powerlessness, was the degree of control the worker had over his work in which the control was shaped by external factors. Second was meaninglessness or the sense of purpose that the worker had in his job. Third indication was social isolation which was characterised by the extent to which they were integrated at the social level with their co – workers. The last state was self – estrangement which was regarded as how involved a worker was in his work (Fulcher and Scott, 2007: 679 – 682). Moreover, according to Haralambos (2004: 626 – 629) and O’Donnell (1997: 262 – 268), Blauner considered 4 occupational situations through printing industry (craft technology), textile industry (machine minding technology), car industry (assembly line production), and chemical industry (automation) in his examination of alienation. As an illustration of a pre – industrial craft technology, the printing industry ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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