The Modern Bourgeois and Proletariat

Kaitlyn Nothaft – Period 1 Honorbound

The “Modern Bourgeoisie” can be identified as the “Middle Class” in the United States of America, while the “Modern Proletarians” can be identified as the “Lower Class” in the United States. While many believe that society has developed and advanced far beyond the feudal system, they are mistaken, because the feudal system including the Bourgeoisie and Proletariat classes are still very alive.

Karl Marx explains in his Manifesto of the Communist Party that “Society as a whole is more and more splitting up into two great hostile camps, into two great classes directly facing each other – Bourgeoisie and Proletariat” [1].  National Public Radio recently published an article on the classes in the United States and it found that the Middle Class, or Bourgeois, population in the United States has been steadily decreasing since 1971 [2].  While the Lower Class, or Proletarians, have steadily been increasing in the United States [2].  While years have passed since Karl Marx wrote the Manifesto of the Communist Party, his ideas remain true today.  The United States of America remains divided between the classes, more specifically, between the Middle and Lower Classes, the Modern Bourgeoisie Class and the Modern Proletariat Class.  Marx writes that “[The Bourgeoisie] has converted the physician, the lawyer, the priest, the poet, the man of science, into its paid wage labourers” [1].  This accusation of the Bourgeoisie Class could not be more accurate today.  Today doctors make a fraction of what they used to make, lawyers had more opportunities for wealth years ago, scientists were sought out for by universities willing to pay more than what can be imagined today.  The Bourgeoisie has taken groups and classes of people and changed their place in society and their worth to give themselves the advantage.  Marx claims that “ The bourgeoisie, wherever it has got the upper hand, has put an end to all feudal patriarchal, idyllic, relations” [1].  Meaning that the Bourgeoisie ensure that they create a society where they have the advantage; however, this does not mean that they are always successful in carrying out their plans.  

Lower Class citizens, specifically those who are paid minimum wage and who are on welfare have been fighting to increase the minimum wage for years now.  One critical mistake that the Bourgeoisie have made in both the past, and the present, is they underestimate the power of the masses of the Proletariat, or lower class.  As seen in the recent trends among the classes in the United States, the Proletariat Class has been increasing, which could potentially give the masses the power and change the entire way of the feudal system.  The Proletariat Class could overthrow the Bourgeoisie, just as the Bourgeoisie had done to the kings and statesmen before them.  

It is important to understand the the Feudal System is still around and that everything is still evolving in the world and there are still changes within the Class System and that there is, in fact, a Modern Bourgeoisie Class and a Modern Proletariat Class.

 

[1] Marx, Karl, and Friedrich Engels. The Communist Manifesto. United States: Publisher Not Identified, 2017.

[2] Geewax, Marilyn. “The Tipping Point: Most Americans No Longer Are Middle Class.” NPR. December 09, 2015. Accessed May 01, 2017. http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/12/09/459087477/the-tipping-point-most-americans-no-longer-are-middle-class.

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