Marx as a Student of Technology

  • Nathan Rosenberg
Keywords: Marxism, Political Economy, Labor


This paper will attempt to demonstrate that a major reason for the fruitfulness of Marx's framework for the analysis of social change was that Marx was, himself, a careful student of technology. By this I mean not only that he was fully aware of, and insisted upon, the historical importance and the social consequences of technology. That much is obvious. Marx additionally devoted much time and effort to explicating the distinctive characteristics of technologies, and to attempting to unravel and examine the inner logic of individual technologies. He insisted that technologies constitute an interesting subject, not only to technologists, but to students of society and social pathology as well, and he was very explicit in the introduction of technological variables into his arguments.