Rethinking Marx

If Marx was reincarnated in 1960 and lived through 20th century capitalism, feminism and eco-activism, what might his analysis look like today?

This is not the old Karl Marx—but drop his jargon and you have a method of analysis remarkably relevant today, when economics looks like a religion worshiping American interest rate policy.

Marx’s focus on the organisation of work highlights the dangerous new world created in our 21st century pursuit of growth through unsustainable debt—the rise of speculative financial capital and the fall in investment for productive efficiency, the inequality and global instability, the growing pressures on family life.

Marx’s method explained the distribution of income by examining the organisation of productive work into classes, each with distinct roles and rewards. This framework is broadened here to include all aspects of modern life—how we raise our families, organise our community life and leisure time, influence our political processes and shape our natural environment—and explained in plain language to demonstrate his method clearly.

The strength of class analysis is this emphasis on how changing roles and rewards shape our future. We are reminded that self-interest will undermine social stability if any class takes an excessive share of social wealth. But to create a more equitable future, our own political organisations also need to be more open and democratic.

Download “Marx2: the humanist manifesto” or read it here online.