Mode of Production

2758 WordsDec 29, 201212 Pages
In the writings of Karl Marx and the Marxist theory of historical materialism, a mode of production (in German: Produktionsweise, meaning 'the way of producing ') is a specific combination of: * productive forces: these include human labour power and available knowledge given the level of technology in the means of production (e.g. tools, equipment, buildings and technologies, materials, and improved land). * social and technical relations of production: these include the property, power and control relations governing society 's productive assets, often codified in law, cooperative work relations and forms of association, relations between people and the objects of their work, and the relations between social classes. Marx…show more content…
The modes of production in history In a broad outline, Marxist theory recognizes several distinctive modes of production characteristic of different epochs in human history: * Primitive communism Human society is seen as organized in traditional tribe structures, typified by shared values and consumption of the entire social product. As no permanent surplus product is produced, there is also no possibility of a ruling class coming into existence. As this mode of production lacks differentiation into classes, it is said to be classless. Palaeolithic and Neolithic tools, pre- and early-agricultural production, and rigorous ritualized social control have often been said to be the typifying productive forces of this mode of production. However, the foraging mode of production still exists, and often typified in contemporary hunter-gatherer societies. Past theories of the foraging mode of production have focused on lack of control over food production. More recent scholarship has argued that hunter-gatherers use the foraging mode of production to maintain a specific set of social relations that, perhaps controversially, are said to emphasize egalitarianism and the collective appropriation of resources. * Asiatic mode of production This is a controversial contribution to Marxist theory, initially used to explain pre-slave and pre-feudal large earthwork
Open Document