Why Work? Marx and Human Nature

Science and Society 69 (4):606 - 616 (2005)

Authors
Sean Sayers
University of Kent
Abstract
Why work? Most people say that they work only as a means to earn a living. This is also implied by the hedonist account of human nature which underlies utilitarianism and classical economics. It is argued in this paper that Marx’s concept of alienation involves a more satisfactory theory of human nature which is rooted in Hegel’s philosophy. According to this, we are productive beings and work is potentially a fulfilling activity. The fact that it is not experienced as such is shown to be at the basis of Marx’s critique of capitalist society
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