Essay Example on Modernity is a term used to identify the stage in the history








Modernity is a term used to identify the stage in the history of social relations where there were major shifts and the dark ages were radically changed to the modern ages It is believed that it dated roughly from the end of the 18th century and it is characterised by the democratic and industrial revolutions Modernity also refers to much earlier and more enduring social conditions and is based on science and rationality with individualistic characteristics separating the private and public spheres The industrial revolution marks modernity as most people lived and worked in rural areas in the 17th century Britain moved from rural to urban with the scientific revolution and technology such a trains were industrialised Urbanisation was a product of the industrial revolution which is where key forms of labour took place within the slave trade Karl Marx Emile Durkheim and Max Weber are those that are considered as classical sociologists and they discuss factors regarding social divisions such as class in terms of modernity as well as contemporary society which related to how change is brought about All three men were products of modernity and studied modernity s effects Karl Marx looked at rationality Emile Durkheim looked at how different societies understand rationality differently and Max Weber examined the importance of science Marxism is a structural conflict theory which was peak in the period of industrialisation Karl Marx was born in the 19th century who witnesses radical change to living and working conditions this along with the growth of the modern city also created a growth in poverty crimes and alcoholism Karl Marx was predominantly interested in political and economic issues and was influenced by three traditions one of which was German Philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel 1770 1831 who was one of the greatest systematic thinkers in the history of Western philosophy It was during the industrial revolution in Britain and Europe that Karl Marx developed his ideas

This was at the time of socio economic change when slavery colonialism and expansion existed and during the industrial revolution the slave trade was a key form of labour The old feudal system when lords of the manor owned the land and ordinary people had the freedom and rights to all land Karl Marx's historical materialism and the class struggle was noted as he rejected the idea of history believed that history was made by the actions of some individuals Marx rejected the idealism of Hegel and the idea of historical change as well as the idea of social inequality Marx argued that ideas are abstract forces are driven by history rather than human agency and that man has the capacity to produce change Instead of Hegel's idea of idealism Marx advanced a materialist account of history and social change and focussed on conflict and contradiction not unity and harmony The ruling class in society are well known as the bourgeoisie they exploit proletariat members of society Capitalism is an economic system where investments in means of productions are made this means that the bourgeoisie get profits from companies that they own but do not work for the proletariats must sell their labour for low wages to survive Individuals need a satisfaction of basic material needs such basic levels of food and shelter to live These material conditions determine the necessity for one group of people to subject themselves to domination by another for example the bourgeoisie creating a false class consciousness for the proletarians Karl Marx believed that the division of labour makes it necessary to have an increased number of proletariats working in capitalist conditions for the bourgeoisie 

With the increased capitalisation and industrialisation arrangements of labour become increasingly complex it led to a more complex division of labour with humans becoming extensions of machines the machines are a more efficient system of power meaning alienation is apparent Alienation is where the relationship between human labour and human nature is perverted by capitalism because our labour is owned and controlled by capitalists which is no longer an expression of our principles and purpose Under capitalism our labour becomes a wage We are alienated from our purpose and from human nature Capitalists employ workers and own their labour as well as what is produced so workers are forced to sell their labour In a capitalist society today an example of a mechanism of exploitation are zero hour contracts This means that workers have no security as well as no holiday or sick pay The increased number of people working on zero hour contacts is ever increasing but employees therefore pay less As well as the division in class of the proletariats being paid lower wages gender is also key Women get paid less for jobs and are often a reserve army of labour for workforces Capitalism is fundamentally exploitative and produces poverty the rich are rich because they own the means of production that the poor need to live The superstructure model of society refers to the ideology the superstructure refers to the key institutions in which society is produced and how people should work From the superstructure of society there are industries the state who make laws the media who tell us what to think and how we should fit into society and education which is for the reproduction of knowledge it reproduces liberalism The base of the model is the capitalist mode of production

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