Soc 140 Lec sept 11 - Soc 140 Lec. September 11, 2007 Marx...

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Soc 140 Lec. September 11, 2007 - Marx saw class struggle as being inevitable and fundamental. - Reform and natural ethnic differences can undermine this - Ideology is not neutral; the ruling ideas of an era are those of the ruling class. Each new ruling class represents its interests as the common interests of all members of society. Lenin - analyzed ideas of Marx and Engels - Lenin himself was also writing as a means of debating other political actors of his time. His writings had a direct baring on the early course of the Russian Revolution. - The state is a product or an expression of class antagonisms. The state ensures that class antagonisms do not consume the society. States have not always existed. Their existence is clearly bound up with the emergence of class cleavages. - In whose interest is the state formed? Why does the state exist? Who stands to benefit from this force that intercedes to ameliorate class conflicts? - The state is the apparatus through which the dominant class is able to secure its rule. It functions to benefit the interests of the dominant class. - What is special about capitalist states (what differentiates them from other kinds of states) is that they usually involve parliamentary democracy (representative democracy/legislative body). - Lenin says we should not let this fool us (the existence of the parliamentary democracy) it does not change the fundamental class nature. (Will always be helping a particular class more so than the others.) - Parliamentary democracy creates an appearance that the state represents the population as a whole, but it is as much a form of direct class rule as any other form. Gives the appearance of representing all members of society, but is direct class rule. - Lenin’s most immediate concern was what the state should look like in a worker’s society. What should a state look like in the context of a worker’s society? With the overthrow of capitalist society by the workers, what will happen to the state? - Lenin argues that as long as there are classes, the state will continue to exist (to ameliorate the tensions so the society will not consume itself). This is true even if it is the bourgeoisie that is the disadvantaged class following revolutions. -
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Soc 140 Lec sept 11 - Soc 140 Lec. September 11, 2007 Marx...

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