• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

What Is The Role Of Education From A Marxist Point Of View?

Extracts from this document...


What Is The Role Of Education From A Marxist Point Of View? Marxism bases its view of education much around the notion that an individual is shaped by the education system through ideology. Ideology is the 'body of ideas and beliefs of a group or nation' and is the most subtle and effective way of control. For the control of people's thoughts implicitly affects their actions and behaviour. It is a common belief that intelligence determines the success of a person but Marxism would challenge this in saying that it is purely an ideological belief. Samuel Bowles and Herbert Gintis have written 'Schooling in Capitalist America' (1976), possibly, the most well known Marxist account of the education system, they provide evidence in stating that intelligence is merely a product of success rather than a cause. If success were due to intelligence then it would be expected that people with similar I.Q. ...read more.


Karl Marx makes the following observations on the workplace: 'Masses of labourers, crowded into the factory, are organised like soldiers. As privates of the industrial army they are placed under the command of a perfect hierarchy officers and sergeants' (Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx) In schools pupils are punished or rewarded according to their behaviour, this encourages them to conform to the hierarchy. Schools reward and promote punctuality and discourage certain independent reasoning, for example, a pupil will think how they can improve their performance on a certain task but they will not question the merits of the task. This is because it is required in the workplace by many employers. These employers do not want the worker to question authority or to be unpunctual or even how to improve and organise the unfair economic system. Schools are also much alike jobs in the respect that they offer little intrinsic satisfaction to the individual. ...read more.


In addition to this, inequality is transmitted as inevitable and acceptable social act. The education system claims that it is a meritocratic one but this is purely ideology, as the social class of the parents determines educational qualifications. I have observed some flaws and criticisms in the Marxist view such as the portrayal of people as mere 'creatures' of the education system and the idea that school is so necessarily closely related to work but capitalism survived for a long period of time before compulsory education. Also, teachers are viewed as 'agents' of ideology but many teachers do so because they wish to express their ideas freely. In conclusion I believe that the Marxist view on education is a very critical but valid one. I would like to acknowledge the use of the following resources: * http://www.msherrard.freeserve.co.uk * Sociology in Focus by Paul Taylor et al * 'Schooling in capitalist America' by Samuel Bowles and Herbert Gintis (1976) * 'Communist manifesto' by Karl Marx * * * * By Lee O'Brien ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Teaching section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Teaching essays

  1. To what extent is the Irish Education system meritocratic?

    Marx believed that in this way the bourgeoisie succeed in keeping the proletariat quiet and suppressing a revolution. Another theoretical bases, which takes the approach that education systems are meritocratic, is the neo-Weberian view. Trovey and Share quote Drudy and Lynch as having stated that the neo-Weberian approach " draws

  2. How does the work of Paul Willis differ from that of Bowles and Gintis? ...

    It disguises the unfairness of the system and tries to make you accept it. It tries to legitimate inequality and make it seem normal. It makes them experience what Marxists describe as false class-consciousness and that they are not aware of their true identity.

  1. This study sets out to investigate the evolving educational role of the academic librarian ...

    there are arts related departments that . . . are still quite resistant to the idea. I know several departments in the university that integrated it fully into their curriculum and that's worked wonderfully'. 60 It is not surprising that it is the arts related departments that have remained sceptical about IL integration because the disciplines they incorporate are

  2. Both Functionalist and Marxist writers emphasise the social purposes of education. Compare and contrast ...

    Therefore, schools only sort children on the basis of their ability and achievement. Parsons also believed that there was also a moral component to this, as not only were the high achievers performing well academically but they were also well behaved and responsible individuals.

  1. globalisation merits and demerits

    Increased liquidity of capital allowing investors in developed nations to invest in developing nations * Corporations have greater flexibility to operate across borders * Increased flow of communications allows vital information to be shared between individuals and corporations around the world * Spread of democratic ideals to developed nations *

  2. The role of politics in South Africa's educational system.

    Education remained the basis for African advancement and organizations, such as the African National Congress (ANC), established in 19236. These organizations, made up of missionary educated urban Africans, gained momentum while minority white governments were legislating furiously to limit political and economic opportunities for Africans, "Coloureds", and Asians7.

  1. Analysis of the Education System of Bangladesh.

    They also look at the potential for poverty reduction through better employment opportunities. Using data from a school-level survey and a household survey, the study investigates children?s access to primary and secondary school by assessing at the impact of different levels of poverty on enrolment rates.

  2. Discuss the role of primary schooling in the production and regulation of gendered and ...

    was and accepted thats what they wanted to be without problematising it in the slightest. This idea of marriage and babies again relates back to the DfEEs Sexual Relationship Education guidance. (Renold 2005:31) Again just one more way in which primary schooling is regulating sexuality.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work