Soshalogy: First Assignment

Posted: October 12, 2010 in Uncategorized

As opposed to mindlessly rambling on and on about how many attractive and seemingly absent minded the majori of the girls are at this fine institution, I am going to acually try and get some work done here:

This document contains a selection of quotations which you should study carefully making sure that you recognize who wrote them and what they signify. They are taken from the readings in part 1 of the course reader and they have been chosen to bring forth an understanding of the text. A selection of these quotes will appear in the first assignment. It will be beneficial therefore to identify now where they are located in the text and to write a summary in your own words of what the quote illustrates of the theoretical arguments of the author. Once you identify their location, carefully read the surrounding text as this will be of great value in advancing your comprehension. Do more than this. Use your textbook to explore their meaning more deeply. Since some of these particular quotes will appear in the assignment, do not be surprised if the instructor /TAs are unwilling to define their meaning with detailed precision. This is not to say that you should avoid all discussion of them, it might be very useful to use them to stimulate debate in class as this will expand your understanding.

So I am not exactly sure WHEN this is due but I’m guessing in about two weeks, which may coincide with my Soc M17 and His M104 class. So, for now, I’m gonna vomit all these quotes and identify the quotee (??).

Extract 1 “The bourgeoisie during its rule of scarce one 100 years has created more massive and more colossal productive forces than have all preceding generations together. Subjection of nature’s forces to man, machinery, application of chemistry to industry and agriculture, steam navigation, railways, electric telegraphs, clearing of old continents for cultivation, canalization of rivers, whole populations conjured up out of the ground, — what earlier century had even a pre-sentiment that such productive forces slumbered in the lap of social labor?”

Extract 2. “In proportion as the bourgeoisie, i.e. capital, is developed, in the same proportion is the proletariat, the modern working class, developed – a class of laborers, who live only so long as they find work, and who find work, only so long as their labor increases capital. These laborers, who must sell themselves piecemeal, are a commodity, like every other article of commerce, and are consequently exposed to all the vicissitudes of competition, to all the fluctuations of the market’.

Extract 3 “The bourgeoisie, by the rapid improvement of all instruments of production, by the immensely facilitated means of communication, draws all, even the most barbarian, nations into civilization. The cheap prices of commodities are the heavy artillery with which it forces the barbarians’ intensely obstinate hatred of foreigners to capitulate. It compels all nations, on pain of extinction, to adopt the bourgeois mode of production; it compels them to introduce what it calls civilization into their midst, i.e., to become bourgeois themselves. In one word, it creates a world after its own image

Extract 4 . “The bourgeoisie cannot exist without constantly revolutionizing the instruments of production, and thereby the relations of production, and with them the whole relations of society. Conservation of the old modes of production in unaltered form, was, on the contrary, the first condition of existence for all earlier industrial classes. Constant revolutionizing of production, uninterrupted disturbance of all social conditions, everlasting uncertainty and agitation distinguish the bourgeois epoch from all earlier ones. All fixed, fast frozen relations, with their train of ancient and venerable prejudices and opinions, are swept away, all new-formed ones become antiquated before they can ossify. All that is solid melts into air, all that is holy is profaned, and man is at last compelled to face with sober senses his real condition of life and his relations with his kind.”

Extract 5. The need of a constantly expanding market …. chases the bourgeoisie over the entire surface of the globe. It must nestle everywhere, settle everywhere, establish connections everywhere. The bourgeoisie has, through its exploitation of the world market, given a cosmopolitan character to production and consumption in every country.

Extract 6. ‘”The bourgeoisie, wherever it has got the upper hand, has put an end to all feudal, patriarchal, idyllic relations. It has pitilessly torn asunder the motley feudal ties that bound man to his “natural superiors”, and has left no other nexus between people than naked self-interest, than callous cash payment…….. It has drowned out the most heavenly ecstasies of religious fervor, of chivalrous enthusiasm, of philistine sentimentalism, in the icy water of egotistical calculation. It has resolved personal worth into exchange value, and in place of the numberless indefeasible chartered freedoms, has set up that single, unconscionable freedom – Free Trade. In one word, for exploitation, veiled by religious and political illusions, it has substituted naked, shameless, direct, brutal exploitation”.

Extract 7 “.. with the development of industry, the proletariat not only increases in number; it becomes concentrated in greater masses, its strength grows and it feels that strength more. The various interests and conditions of life within the ranks of the proletariat are more and more equalized, in proportion as machinery obliterates all distinctions of labor, and nearly everywhere reduces wages to the same low level…………”

Extract 8 “ …. here it becomes evident that the bourgeoisie is unfit any longer to be the ruling class in society, and to impose its conditions of existence upon society as an overriding law. It is unfit to rule because it is incompetent to assure an existence to its slave within his slavery, because it cannot help letting him sink into such a state, that it has to feed him instead of being fed by him. Society can no longer live under this bourgeoisie, in other words, its existence is no longer compatible with society.’

Extract 9 “… there is in every society, a certain group of phenomena which may be differentiated from those studied by the other natural sciences. When I fulfill my obligations as brother, husband or cirtizen, when I execute my contract, I perform duties which are defined externally to myself and my acts, in law and in custom. Even if they conform to my own sentiments and I feel their reality subjectively, such reality is still objective.”

Extract 10 “ It is true that, when we define them with this word ‘constraint’, we risk shocking the zealous partisans of absolute individualism. For those who profess the complete autonomy of the individual, man’s dignity is diminished whenever he is made to feel that he is no. t completely self determinant. It is generally accepted that most of our ideas and our tendencies are not developed by ourselves but come to us from without . How can they become part of us without imposing themselves upon us?”

Extract 11 “Considering the facts as they are and as they have always been, it becomes immediately evident that all education is a continuous effort to impose on the child ways of seeing, feeling and acting which he would not have arrived at spontaneously. ……. If, in time, this constraint ceases to be felt, it is because it gradually gives rise to habits and to internal tendencies that render constraint unnecessary…’

Extract 12 “The objection may be raised that a phenomenon is collective only if it is common to all members of society, or at least to most of them – in other words, if it is truly general. This may be true, but it is general because it is collective (that is, more or less obligatory) and certainly not collective because it is general. “

Extract 13 “Crime is, then, necessary; it is bound up with the fundamental conditions of all social life, and by that very fact it is useful because these conditions of which it is a part are themselves indispensable to the normal evolution of morality and law”.14

Extract 14 “ It is not human nature that can assign the variable limits necessary to our needs. They are thus unlimited so far as it is left to the individual alone. Irrespective of any external regulating force, our capacity for sensation is an insatiable bottomless abyss .“

Extract 15 “What proves still more conclusively that economic distress does not have the same aggravating influrnce often attributed to it, is that it trends rather to produce the opposite effect. There is very little suicide in Ireland, where the peasantry leads so wretched a life. Poverty stricken Calabria has almost no suicides; Spain has a 10th as many as France. Poverty may even be considered a protection. In the various French departments, the more people there are with independent means, the more numerous are the suicides.

Extract 16 ‘ No living being can be happy or even exist unless his needs are sufficiently proportioned to his means. In other words, if his needs require more than can be granted, or even merely something of a different sort, they will be under continual friction and can only function painfully………… But how to determine the quantity of well being, comfort or luxury legitimately carved by a human being? Nothing appear in man’s organic nor even in his psychological constitution which sets a limit to such tendencies. The functioning of individual life does not require them to cease at one point rather than another ; the proof being that they have increased since the beginnings of history, receiving more and more satisfaction, yet with no weakening of average health. Above all, how to establish their proper variation with different conditions of life, occupations, relative importance of services etc? In no society are they equally satisfied in the different stages of the social hierarchy. Yet human nature is substantially the same among all men, in is essential qualities. It is not human nature which can assign the variable limits to our needs. They are thus unlimited so far as they depend on the individual alone. Irrespective of any external regulatory force, our capacity for feeling is in itself, an insatiable and bottomless abyss. ‘

Extract 17 “All existence being part of the universe is relative to the remainder; its nature and method of manifestation accordingly depend not only on itself but on other beings, who consequently restrain and regulate it. Here there are only differences of degree and form between the mineral realm and the thinking person. Man’s characteristic privilege is that the bond he accepts is not physical but moral; that is, social. He is governed not by a material environment brutally imposed upon him but by a conscience superior to his own, the superiority of which he feels. “

Extract 18. “ Experience shows that in no instance does domination voluntarily limit itself to the appeal to material or affectual or ideal motives as a basis for its continuance. In additional every such system attempts to establish and to cultivate the belief in its legitimacy.

Extract 19 ‘So far as his action follows principles at all, they a ethical common sense, of equity, or of utilitarian expediency. They are not formal principles, as in the case of legal authority. The exercise of power is oriented toward the consideration of how far master and staff can go in view of the subject’s traditional compliance without arousing resistance. When resistance is aroused, it is directed against the master or his servant personally, the accusation being that he failed to observe the traditional limits of his power.”

Extract 20 “ It is the recognition on those subject to the authority which is decisive for the validity o charisma. This recognition is freely given and guaranteed by what is held to be a proof, originally always a miracle, and consists in devotion to the corresponding revelation, hero worship, or absolute trust in the leader. But where charisma is genuine, it is not this which is the basis of the claim to legitimacy. This basis lies rather in the conception that it is the duty of those subject to charismatic authority to recognize its genuineness and to act accordingly. Psychologically, this is a matter of complete personal devotion to the possessor of the quality, arising out of enthusiasm, or of despair and hope.”

Extract 21 “The decisive reason for the advance of bureaucratic organization has always been its purely technical superiority over any other kind of organization. The fully developed bureaucratic mechanism compares with other organizations exactly as does the machine with the non mechanical modes of organization……Precision, speed, un-ambiguity, knowledge of the files, continuity, discretion, unity, strict subordination, reduction of friction and of material and personal costs these are raised to the optimum point in the strictly bureaucratic organization……

Extract 22 ‘The peculiarity of modern culture, and specifically of this technical and economic basis, demands this very calculability of results. …… Without regard for persons, Bureaucracy develops the more perfectly the more it is ‘dehumanized,’ the more completely it succeeds in eliminating from official business love, hatred, and all purely personal, irrational and emotional elements which escape calculation. This is the specific nature of bureaucracy and it is appraised as its special virtue”

Extract 23 “The calculability of decision-making] and with it its appropriateness for capitalism . . [is] the more fully realized the more bureaucracy “depersonalizes” itself, i.e., the more completely it succeeds in achieving the exclusion of love, hatred, and every purely personal, especially irrational and incalculable, feeling from the execution of official tasks. In the place of the old-type ruler who is moved by sympathy, favor, grace, and gratitude, modern culture requires for its sustaining external apparatus the emotionally detached, and hence rigorously “professional” expert.”

Extract 24 “ Such an apparatus makes ‘revolution’ in the sense of a forceful creation of entirely new forms of authority, more and more impossible – technically because of its control over the modern means of communication( telegraph etc) and also because of its increasingly rationalized inner structure. “


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