How Much Decent Work

1712 Words Feb 25th, 2016 7 Pages
SO336 – Essay 1

How much ‘decent work’ is available in modern capitalist societies?

By Perrine Davies
Word count: 1551

How much ‘decent work’ is available in modern capitalist societies?
One of the major issues faced in Sociology is that of the workplace. Many of the founding fathers believed it to be a big issue however they had quite contrasting views. Functionalists such as Frederick Engels believe that work is a meritocracy where those who work hard get what they deserve. However, Marxists would claim that work is a negative structure that serves to oppress the proletariat and therefore serve the interests of the bourgeoisie. In this essay it will be argued that in a capitalist society there is a lot of work provided and a lot of people contribute to the economy and that in England there is quite a lot of decent work. Then it will be suggested the definition of ‘decent’ varies drastically depending on cultural and class variation as well as differences based on the gender and age of the worker. Finally it will be concluded that it is very difficult to claim that there is such a thing as decent work in the first place as well as questioning if there is any such thing as “decent work”.
The first issue raised by this question is that of defining what a modern capitalist society is. Karl Marx first coined the term capitalism as a system focused on monetary gain where success is measured using wealth and success rather than value or quality of life. For…
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