Neo Marxists Expanation of Realigion

330 Words2 Pages
-The traditional Marxism is not to be confused with Neo-Marxism. They differ greatly in some areas. Traditional Marxism argues that religion only favors the ruling class. "It's the opium of the oppressed," meaning it acts as a force to numb the pain of oppression by promising a better life after death, making suffering virtuous and preventing change. Neo-Marxism (in sociology) includes Max Weber's understanding of social inequalities. Neo-Marxists (Weber) and Marxists (Marx) don't agree on how religion cultivated capitalism, the foundataion of religion and the relationship between social change and religion. Max Weber argued that capitalism developed as a result of religious movement, more specifically Calvinism. It was based on the idea that God gave salvation to those who pursued economic interest, in the name of religious duty. They did not spend money too frivolously, instead invested in businesses, engaged in trading and hard work, striving for economic success. Religious duty and a higher calling for a moral meaning were behind the development of capitalism, according to Weber. The church assured the bussiness owners of their salvation, so they became more self assured and confident, allowing them to progress even more. Religion also limited using money for pleasure or donating it to the poor, as they were percieved as not serving God and burdening others. Overtime, capitalism developed as a religion of its own and the religious drive behind it got eliminated. Weber was concerned that social values of ethics and was replaced by utilitarian values of capitalism, which is similar to Marx's notion of alienation. Marx claimed that a change in the class structure of society would lead to changes in religion. Thus when a classless society was established religion would disappear. Neo-Marxists claimed that religion could be used as a tool of resistance and
Open Document