Essay on Marxist Critique Of Social Welfare

Essay on Marxist Critique Of Social Welfare

Length: 1317 words (3.8 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Marxists see society in terms of a conflict between economic classes; a dominant class, the ‘bourgeoisie’, owns and controls the means of production whereas an industrial working class, the ‘proletariat’, is exploited by them (Spicker 2008). In the context of social policy, from a Marxist perspective, rights to welfare are given not to secure a fairer system, out of benevolence or in recognition of the importance of advancing some form of equality, but to protect and conceal the selfish interests of the dominant class (Taylor 2007). I will begin this essay by giving a brief introduction to the Marxist analysis of social welfare delivered by the state. I will subsequently develop an analysis to evaluate whether Marxist theory continues to be relevant in informing our understanding of contemporary welfare states. I will argue that whilst Marxism provides an interesting critique of welfare policies espoused by the political centre, ultimately Marxism’s reliance on revolutionary methods has rendered Marxists political outcasts, failing to prove politically effective and thus, relevant when it comes to contemporary welfare states. I will argue that this is reflected in the success of Social Democracy in shaping welfare states in the last century which like Marxism is committed to egalitarian principles, yet favouring gradual change as opposed to revolution. I will conclude that the Marxist analysis of social welfare ultimately fails to have little more than theoretical relevance in understanding contemporary welfare states.
While the ideologies of the political centre allow for the state to be used to minimise the damage created by the instabilities of capitalism, Marxists argue that the interests of the dominant class contaminate the ...


... middle of paper ...


...es to our understanding of contemporary welfares states. I conclude that whilst, as demonstrated by Ginsburg’s (1979) critique of the benefits system, the Marxist analysis of social welfare provides an interesting critique of the welfare policies espoused by the political centre, Marxists, favouring revolution as a solution have had little influence on Western policy ultimately rendering them outcasts (Taylor 2007). I argued that this best demonstrated by the success of Social Democracy in the last century, proving successful in showing that the welfare state can be used to serve the common good without the need for revolution; this success illustrated with the survival of the National Health Service since 1948. As such the Marxist analysis of social welfare ultimately fails to have little more than theoretical relevance in understanding contemporary welfare states.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on Marxist Critique Of On Liberty

- To begin a Marxist critique of On Liberty, a summary of both Karl Marx and John Mill’s views are pertinent to the basic understanding of their thoughts through their work. Laying out the fundamentals of their views will help us recognize what types of arguments they might have towards one another on the topic of Net Neutrality. Net Neutrality can broadly be defined as the government intervention to prevent internet providers from charging content providers more for greater access to their internet service....   [tags: Marxism, Social class, John Stuart Mill]

Better Essays
2262 words (6.5 pages)

Social Work And Social Welfare Essay

- Social Work and Social Welfare are crucial to today 's society without social workers along with the help of social welfare programs, many necessities of america could not be met. this year over 6 million children will be reported as being abused. Each and every day the innocence of an adolescent is marred. whether that be physically, sexually, emotionally or even just being neglected. which brings america to the clear assumption that social workers are a necessity to promote safety to the children of America....   [tags: Sociology, Social sciences, Social work, Welfare]

Better Essays
1408 words (4 pages)

Social Welfare in India Essay

- Social Welfare Social welfare cannot really be bound by a solid definition. It has been used in varying ways by different people, depending on what it is that they want to cover. According to the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), “social welfare generally denotes the full range of organized activities of voluntary and governmental agencies that seek to prevent, alleviate, or contribute to the solution of recognized social problems, or to improve the well-being of individuals, groups, or communities.” At times, social welfare is used to refer to aspects of wellbeing material, like basic access to economic resources....   [tags: Social Welfare Essays]

Better Essays
2529 words (7.2 pages)

Policies Of Social Welfare Policies Essay

- Policies govern the way in which we live. They dictate and shape our lives and distinguish which services are being implemented by the agencies many of us work for. Furthermore, social welfare policies are put in place to help the client population we service and are designed to promote the wellbeing of its citizens. Social welfare policies were designed to “service the needs of particularly vulnerable or disadvantaged groups such as foster children, low-income families living in inner-city areas, or people with mental illness” (Midley, 2009, p....   [tags: Welfare, Unemployment, Sociology, Social security]

Better Essays
1189 words (3.4 pages)

Essay on The Welfare Of The Social Welfare System

- 1. Explain the welfare state. For many years, private charities, along with local governments, have cared for the poor through a multitude of economic security programs. These programs comprised the welfare state that sought to enact policies (after the Great Depression) in order to promote economic security for all Americans. 2. What is the history of the social welfare system. The welfare system has been prominent throughout history, however in the past, it was based off of a charity system, whereby individuals would volunteer their generosity....   [tags: Unemployment, Welfare, Medicare, Health insurance]

Better Essays
2129 words (6.1 pages)

Essay on Feminism And Social, Political And Economic Equality Of The Sexes

- “A feminist is one who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes” (Adichie, 2013). Feminism is not the belief that one’s sexual orientation or one’s power is superior over another. The very meaning of feminism demonstrates a complete resistance to this belief. Throughout the years, a range of categories of feminism philosophy have developed. They consist of goals in objectives, methodologies, and affiliations. Many feminists distinguish themselves with many branches of women 's activist thought....   [tags: Feminism, Feminist theory, Radical feminism]

Better Essays
2063 words (5.9 pages)

Social Work And Social Welfare Essay

- Social Work and Social Welfare Poverty 8/15/2016 Kerstin Rise Abstract Views on poverty Definition of poverty Americas poor Political factors Programs available Legislation and law Economic factors Poverty is one of the oldest problems facing this country. Many people are affected by poverty. What makes this so controversial is that it seems that nothing has changed over time. Regardless of the programs available, we still battle poverty and with the economic downturn, and things to come are not looking better....   [tags: Poverty, Unemployment, Welfare]

Better Essays
1981 words (5.7 pages)

Social Welfare Past and Present Essay

- Social Welfare Past and Present Social welfare is an expansive system proposed to maintain the well being of individuals within a society. This paper will explain the progression from the feudal system and church provisions for the poor before the Elizabethan Poor Law to the gradual assumption of the responsibility for the poor by the government. A responsibility assumed not out of humanity and concern for the poor, but as a process of standardizing the ways in which the poor were to be managed....   [tags: Papers History Aid Welfare Essays]

Better Essays
1334 words (3.8 pages)

Social Welfare Essay

- Social Welfare is an encompassing and imprecise term, but most often it is defined in terms of “organized activities,” or another element that suggests policy and programs created to respond to social problems and improve the well being of those at risk. In this paper I will discuss the history of social welfare policies and its influence on families. The advance of the welfare state reflected period-specific needs and was heavily influenced by changes in the national economy. Social welfare policy of the Colonial Period was replicated from the Elizabethan Poor Law that aimed to assist migrants in their struggle to fulfill the expectations of the early stages of industrialization....   [tags: social problems, food stamps]

Free Essays
1305 words (3.7 pages)

Essay on Welfare Reform

- Welfare Reform Welfare is a public assistance program that provides at least a minimum amount of economic security to people whose incomes are insufficient to maintain an adequate standard of living. These programs generally include such benefits as financial aid to individuals, subsidized medical care, and stamps that are used to purchase food. The modern U.S. welfare system dates back to the Great Depression of the 1930’s. During the worst parts of the Depression, about one-fourth of the labor force was without work....   [tags: Social Welfare Retirement Economics Essays]

Free Essays
799 words (2.3 pages)