Capitalism, Consumerism, Karl Marx

Diss research

History: Consumerism

History of ideas: Capitalism

How to improve capitalism

Political theory: Karl Marx “Capitalism’s most famous and ambitious critique” 1818-1883 – His ideas were used to create dictatorships. He was a communist, journalist.


1.Modern work leads to alienation – in order to be fulfilled at work, workers have to see themselves in the objects they have created – this is increasingly rare in the modern world. Disconnection between what you do all day and who you feel you really are.

2. Modern work is insecure

3. Workers get paid little while capitalists get rich – profit is exploitation

4. Capitalism is very unstable

5. Capitalism is bad for capitalists – Marx didn’t think that capitalists were evil – he thought that the capitalist system forces everyone to put economic reasons at the heart of their existence – they no longer experience real,deep relationships – called Commodity Fetishism (we value things that have no objective value)- Feminists argued against that(they wanted the right to work). Marriage is an extension of business (people staying together not for love but financial reasons)

He was an unpopular, undervalued academic in his day, people of his time would have laughed at the idea that his ideas could remake the world, but a few decades they did. His writings were the keystones of 20th century’s ideologies.

He diagnosed our modern disease.






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