Labour and Society | Sociology UPSC Notes

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Marx says that man is a creative being.He works on nature and tries to change it with his work. Man will never be happy with the way things are and will always want something different. Work is the most important and vital way for a person to meet his basic wants, be himself, and be a person. Man lives through his work, which is what makes him human. Man finds pleasure in working with nature and changing it for his own good. At this point, his work becomes a fully enjoyable activity for both him and the other people around him. Work is an individual action that can also be done with other people.

2. When a person changes the natural world, he or she interacts with other people, and this leads to society becoming more and more complicated. In this way, man takes part in the creation of society.

3. This process creates all kinds of relationships and institutions in society, with the economic process as the base and other subsystems, such as culture, faith, etc., as the top. Marx said that there could be no output without culture. The method of production includes the social relations of production, which are relationships of power and subordination that people are born into or choose to join.

4. Class is both a matter of money and of culture. So, people are also involved in the process of social production, which is a very broad term that includes almost every part of society, culture, religion, economic production, etc.

5. The interactions between man and nature have important effects because man is always in touch with nature through his social work. (More from other parts of the course outline)

Notes on the social factors that affect economic growth:

Two things are linked to economic growth: Economic growth leads to an increase in production and income, and this income is shared fairly among the people to make life better for everyone. Even though economic growth doesn’t have to mean industrialization, there is no past example of a significant rise in per-capita income without both capital and labour being taken away from agriculture. Industrialization and economic growth are the same thing.

1. Many social factors have a big impact on how the economy grows. When people share the same language and customs, they form nation states.

2. A country’s economic growth depends on how well it uses sources of production like labour, land, capital, and organisation. When the economy is monetized, creation is turned into a business. Cultural and social factors have an effect on how factors of production are used.

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3. The people who use the tools must have the skills, knowledge, and experience to get the most out of them.

4. There are fewer people working in agriculture than there used to be. When the right social factors are in place, technology is a very important part of life.

5. As scientific understanding grows, there is a trend towards people living in cities. A new set of values appears that emphasises individual initiative and responsibility and gives each person the freedom to act on their own.

6. The exclusivity of clan, family, or caste breaks down, and standards of behaviour are set up that fit the secondary group relationships that are typical of an industrial society.

7. Education is getting to a lot of people. The social stratification is based on performance standards and the ability to move from one job to another.

Medium of Exchange:

A medium of exchange is the way that things and services are valued and traded. People in societies based on hunting, gathering, herding, and gardening didn’t have much extra food, so they bartered, directly trading one thing for another. In later societies, as trade grew and surpluses grew, people came up with new ways to put prices on things and services so they could be traded.

Even though bartering still happened in agricultural societies, people started to use money more and more. Money is a way to share things that has a value. Gold and silver coins were used as money in most places. The amount of goods or services a coin could buy depended on how much it weighed and how pure it was.

At the end of the agricultural time, paper money came into use. Each piece of paper showed how much gold or silver was kept in a warehouse. Money was a way to store value. Along with the deposit papers and money, gold and silver coins were still used.

When fiat money took the place of money with stored value, coins made of rare metals stopped being used.

People thought these coins were more important, so they didn’t want to give them up. Then, when copper, zinc, and nickel were used instead of silver for smaller coins, people started to save the silver coins, and they too stopped being used.

4. Even without a gold standard that limits the amount of money that can be made to the amount of value that can be kept, governments can only give out so much paper money.

5.In general, prices go up when a government prints money at a faster rate than its gross domestic product (GDP), which is the total amount of goods and services it makes. This is called inflation, and it means that each unit of cash can buy less and less. High inflation makes things less stable, so governments try to keep it under control.

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6. During the first part of the postindustrial world, paper money was used freely. Then, people used checks and credit cards more and more instead of paper money. The next thing to come along was the debit card, which is a device that takes the money from the cardholder’s bank account to pay for an item. The debit card is a type of deposit record, just like a cheque, because it changes who owns the money on deposit.

7. E-cash is the newest form of money. It is money that is stored on the computer of a business and can be sent to anyone with an account with that company over the Internet. You can buy things with e-cash and pay bills with it.

8. We can call the most popular type of electronic cash “e-currency.” E-currency is a government’s paper money, like a certain number of dollars or euros.

9. Electronic gold is the second type of e-cash. It is a sum in units of gold. A deal in e-gold is actually the transfer of ownership of a certain amount of gold that the owner has stored in a bank’s vault.

Globalization and Organization of Work:

The spread of capitalism around the world may be the most important change to the economy in the last 100 years. Louis Gallambos says that the way everyone lives and works will change because of this new global business system.

1. From a functionalist point of view, work is what brings people together. Emile Durkheim thought that because farmers do the same kind of work, they have the same view of the world. He called the feeling of unity that comes from doing similar things “mechanical solidarity.”

2. When a farming society becomes industrialised, people take on a wide range of jobs. As people divide up their work more, they feel less connected to each other. Durkheim called this kind of unity “organic solidarity” because it is like how different parts of the same body work together. 3. This process has gone on for so long that we are now creating a global division of labour because we all depend on workers all over the world. The success of capitalism is based on corporations, which separate ownership from management.

4. We may not feel connected to each other, but we are all part of the same global economic web. A new world framework has been made by the spread of capitalism around the world. North and South America, which are dominated by the United States, Europe, which is controlled by Germany, and Asia, which is dominated by Japan and China. Functionalists say that this new way of dividing the world is good for everyone, not just the big international companies.

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5. The company is a social innovation that made it possible for capitalism to become the most important economic force in the world. A company is a business that, from a legal point of view, is the same as a person. A company can sign contracts, get into debt, sue and be sued. But its debts and responsibilities are not the same as those of its owners. One thing about corporations is that ownership and control are kept separate. The day-to-day business of a corporation is not run by the people who own the company’s stock. Instead, managers run the corporation. “Ownership of wealth without appreciable control, and control of wealth without appreciable ownership” is the result.

6. Conflict theorists point out how the economic class has most of the power. They say that global capitalism is a way for rich people to take advantage of workers. An inner group is made up of the big people who own the multinational companies. Workers lose jobs to automation, but the people in the inner circle keep their political power and make money from the new technology. The word “corporate capitalism” means that big businesses run capitalism today. Power and wealth have become so focused that a global superclass has formed.

7. Interlocking directorates is a tool that brings them together and boosts their power. People, and their fellow board members, are on the boards of directors of several large companies. The top companies are all part of the same network because their connections overlap. This is like how a spider’s web starts in the middle and spreads out in all directions. The global superclass is made up of the leaders of the top multinational companies around the world. Their ranks overlap, so their leaders form a small circle. Not only is the superclass very rich, but it is also very powerful. These people can talk to the most powerful people in politics all over the world.