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Marxist Social Theory

  • About this Course

About this Course


In this course, Dr Ross Abbinnett (University of Birmingham) explores Karl Marx’s theory of society. In the first module, we consider Marx’s analysis of labour, its importance to humanity, and alienation from labour under capitalism. In the second, we look at how Marx approaches history and social change, particularly his base and superstructure model and his notion of modes of production. In the third and fourth modules, we think about Marx’s account of capitalism’s emergence and characteristics, and the political forces which lead society from capitalism to communism. In the final module, we consider efforts to bring communism about in the real world, such as those of the Soviet Union and the People’s Republic of China.


Dr Ross Abbinnett is Senior Lecturer in Social and Political Theory at the University of Birmingham. His recent publications include The Neoliberal Imagination: Politics, Aesthetics, and Economics in the Evolution of Hyper-Industrial Capitalism (2021), The Thought of Bernard Stiegler: Capitalism, Technology and the Politics of Spirit (2018) and Marxism After Modernity: Politics, Technology and Social Transformation (2006).