On Overcoming Alienation; On the Work Ethic; Underdevelopment in Turkey

  • Hal Jamison
  • J. Appleseed
  • Ilkay Sunar
  • Mehmet Arda
Keywords: Philosophy, Labor

Abstract

Some comments on and criticism of "Class Power and Alienated Labor," by Bowles and Gintis in the March 1975 issue of Monthly Review: Alienated labor, which provides no opportunity for worker self-development or meaningful collective action with others, is primarily what they discuss. Alienation itself they do not explain. So by a process of verbal drift, the article represents the worker, particularly the industrial worker, as exemplifying alienation. By suggestion he or she is a defeated, apathetic, isolated, human being. In fact, if we put Bowles' and Gintis' conception of alienated labor as the emptying from work of content allowing self-development, together with their quotation from Eliot Jacques that "man's work…gives him a measure of his sanity," we should conclude that industrial workers in general are insane. So the underlying message, to contrast with the written one (that socialism is necessary) is hopelessness.
Published
1976-10-07
Section
Correspondence