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Growing Alienation: OF MARX & MODERN WORLD, by Mithun Dey, 6 June, 2012 Print E-mail

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New Delhi, 6 June 2012

Growing Alienation


By Mithun Dey

Everyone is alone in this modern societal stage and this is the reality of alienation. In fact, we all feel alienated in our own country. In India, the growing insurgency cases are the result of accumulated criticisms and fury over a long period of time. There have been many factors responsible for such an accumulation. Political and not economic factors are at the root of the insurgency.

The Central Government and consecutive State governments have to share the blame in equal measure for consciously or unintentionally making a negative political impression marked by a growing alienation of the people. A vicious circle starts. The deprived and marginalised sections of the society, unable to survive in the present system, get alienated. Large States breed deep alienation among vast sections of the people of the nation.

In India, the democratic society and the State Constitutions are still not strong enough. The insurgent groups nearly manage the administration in their areas. As a result, sense of deprivation and alienation are broadly shown among the common people. It is the alienation of the people that has endured insurgency year after year. How can we tackle it, is the question begging an answer. 

Unfortunately, in each step we find a barrier and fail to do as we desire. At the same time, there is no denying that we are living in a technological world and do have our interactions in daily life with others. However, does it suffice? No, if we look at Karl Marx’s slope on the concept of alienation. It appears from his attentiveness to the framework of capitalist modes of construction for a turnover. This is the limelight that let people notice the source of separation or alienation in its real context in this modern world and how all other forms of separation are entrenched in this leading cause. Alienation is in a capitalist mode.

Marx acknowledged the method of people finding constructive articles in this natural world and next taking them since they were generously reachable. He changed these methods to things of better use and value by doing something great on these to develop their usefulness.

For instance, Marx exploited persistently by taking raw materials as cotton, wool and spinning them the same into woven cloth. The same was then taken and worked on to make clothing. He also worked on mining for raw materials and turning this into diner service, ships, vehicles and railroads.

This is not all. We find wood from trees, transformed into fragments and lumber to make paper and houses. Plants harvested for food and animals kept for the same purpose. Some animals such as elephant, horses, ox, and buffalos were trained to assist in the production courses. It is also seen that people were circuitous contact with nature and created all that was helpful and there was no alienation.  

Each person knew closely where all that was essential and helpful for our life came from. Every body was diligent and worked with each other in order to survive. As a result, a fear as well as respect for nature and one another dictated their anecdotes and even their architecture.

Separation has its roots. Surplus value was all over and above basic and instant need. A product of surplus value could be used as an exchange for something which had a shortage. No one enjoys work which contributes nothing. Thus there must be some sort of a fair exchange as we all have the same basic needs to survive.

But, if people dissipate the production of surplus value, the society cannot be developed. In this modern world, the societal stage exists in a condition of united and imbalanced improvement. And, this method leads to alienation between our cultures and leeway exists for recounting of stable revolution in less developed regions and societies. Marx was aware of this and represented the same in an immense feature.

Further, he was also sentient of how the toiler turned into separation or alienation from nature on which his works to produce. This has a lot to do with the idea of money developed to work as a medium of exchange in the form of what Marx called a universal commodity, that means the end of strict barter trading and made trade more fluid and dynamic.

More, barter was often unwieldy and tiresome and thus various items became the medium of the universal commodity. The items were as wampum beads, gold, precious stones, art, cattle and et al. Since most of the items had no proper use value in themselves, these became a tool medium to find the desired real values essential for a living. In this manner, barter developed in a qualitative dive. In unison, one form of estrangement or alienation sneaked in. The producer of value was not necessarily the one who consumed or used it.

The other part of the theory of alienation is the division of the earnings of production from the ones who turned it around. This needed a number of steps that ended in the modern world. The theory behind the same is the attainment of the earnings of production by an owner such as the aristocracy or industrialist or bankers. In nature, there is no such thing as ownership.

Alienation now turns into a central problem with taking away of the peasants from the land within the massive amount of realms and principalities then existent in this modern world. In this modern society, land is annexed for the reason of raising cash crops for the landlords. Not merely so, this is also for the kings and the courts. On the other, Banks are ready to give a huge amount of loans with the idea that borrowers would be returned the same with interests to assist in manufacturing expansion.      

Additionally, the traders and the industrialists use cheap labour, which is forced to work in order to survive. They are working for earning their daily bread, a universal commodity that increasingly turns into a fetish of adoration due to its amazing power of converting itself into anything else of use.

We are living in a culture of consumerism where a thing such as planned obsolescence, dreary tasks, dirty, unsafe and underpaid work is the custom on a world scale. We do live isolated from and estranged from nature. If we carted off the metropolitan cities, the substantial production amenities, our authority, transportation, people for the most part would not know how to grip the new environment, which would be what's left of a ruined nature.

In sum, alienation exists everywhere. The alienated workers especially the cheep labourers are left with the struggle for money. Estrangement from nature and everywhere, the earnings of production, the commodity that is manufactured from the employment of the workforce etc perforce the contemporary state of alienation. It is time to check its spread before it gets worse. ---INFA

(Copyright, India News and Feature Alliance)

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