Religious ideas of marx and durkheim

Quotes Marx condemned capitalist society for producing this - the worker's experience of isolation and misery resulting from powerlessness.

Religious ideas of marx and durkheim

Marx, Weber and Durkheim on Religion by Jeramy Townsley I wrote this essay in response to an exam question during my doctoral work in social theory in If you are a lazy student who uses the internet for your sources, at least inform yourself about copyright law and proper Religious ideas of marx and durkheim procedures for your field, for example American Psychological Association style.

Marx, Weber and Durkheim on Religion Marx, Weber and Durkheim together comprise the historical core of the sociological tradition. While they each come from very different perspectives and offer profound contributions to the field, they each have tried to address problems associated with the advent of modernity.

One issue that has developed within the context of modernity is how religion factors into a society that increasingly is built on the foundations of rationalism. Many intellectuals started asking questions about the origin of religion, since, as Laplace stated to Napoleon, they no longer had need for the God hypothesis.

If, as they believed at the time, culture was moving to a place of mass non-belief, what did that mean for contemporary society which had many structures based around religion?

Marx, the earliest of the three thinkers, actually wrote very little about religion.

Religious ideas of marx and durkheim

Marx makes the claim that the god s we sought in our religions were actually ourselves, as we have apparently discovered through the course of recent historical events, presumably modernism.

Not only is religion a representation of humanity, but further, it is a representation of our own self-consciousness. The study of religion would not simply be a study of the gods, but of society and of humanity itself.

As a reprieve from his apparent harassment of religion, Marx softens his critiques by telling us one of the primary purposes for religious beliefs: Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the sentiment of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions.

It is the opium of the people. The fact that religion persists is a sign that conditions persist that require a sublimated expression of inhumanity. The alienation that religion describes between humans and god represents the alienation that individuals feel from their material existence.

Further, the god that they worship, the perfect, loving, creative, free being that is idealized in religion is actually the idealized selves that humans could be if we were not constrained by the external forces of society.

In longing for reunion with god, salvation, we are actually longing for a reunion with ourselves. The call to abandon their illusions about their condition is a call to abandon a condition which requires illusions.

The criticism of religion is, therefore, the embryonic criticism of this vale of tears of which religion is the halo. However, while Marx spends most of his writings on how economic factors drove the engines of history and spends very little time on the topic of religion, Durkheim invests a great deal of time exploring religion and how it has influenced the direction of society.

Like Marx, Durkheim wanted a scientific understanding of society, an objective study. Also like Marx, he sees religion as a reflection of society and not a depiction of an external supernatural reality. However, Durkheim uses sociological method to prove that hypothesis.

To do so, he explores the tribal religions of the Australian outback, as described by early anthropologists. Similarly to this turn of definitions, Durkheim starts his examination somewhat benignly, as an exploration of the beliefs and rituals of the tribal religions in Australia.

He also talks about how all of the first systems of representation were religious in origin p. In elucidating a sociology of knowledge, Durkheim uses the history of religions to show how religions mirrored the way society was structured.

For example, classificatory schemas for social groups were based on tribal differences. Tribes were divided into two phratries, which were further subdivided into various clans p. These divisions were based around the various totems that were represented by the phratries and clans.

Durkheim proposes that these divisions formed the basis of how humans learned to classify their environment into different categories p. He notices that there is nothing objective in the observable world that forces us to group things with each other. Nowhere in reality do we observe beings that merge their natures and change into one another.

Those realities are nature, man and society. In this way, Durkheim attempts to show that religion forms the epistemological basis for human experience. But Durkheim goes further. He is not content to make religion the epistemological basis for contemporary society. He seeks to radically invert this conception of the relation of religion and society, making not religion the origin of society, as he has just proposed, but in fact making society the origin of religion!

In this way he follows Marx in making religion a reflection of society. However, while Marx sees god as an idealization of human nature, Durkheim sees god as society itself, in several respects. He constructs functional characteristics of god and bridges these to society.

Religious ideas of marx and durkheim

In making this connection, Durkheim hopes to show how religion functions to stabilize society and bring together a sense of unity and identity between the members of the community. He had a similar in mind in The Division of Labor in Society, when he created the categories of mechanical and organic solidarity to elucidate the forces that helped stabilize the radically changing society in the modern world.

In Elementary Forms, Durkheim reaches into another source, religion, to show how societies are stabilized and cohered.Oct 24,  · A Sociological critique of religious belief by Emile Durkheim:) By year 13 philosophy.

Emile Durkheim, Karl Marx and Max Weber all offer a wide array of thoughts and ideas regarding to religion. Firstly, Emile Durkheim's views of religion will be explained. Durkheim chose to adopt the idea that if religion gave birth to everything essential in society it is because society is the soul of religion (Cosman, , p.

). Weber contended that industrial capitalism is the legacy of what Christian religious movement that arose from the Protestant Reformation? The ideas of the ruling class are in every epoch the ruling ideas, i.e.

the class which is the ruling material force of society, is at the same time its ruling intellectual force.

Sociological Theories of Religion

Marx, Durkheim. Durkheim’s last major book “The elementary forms of Religious life” () has been regarded as one of the most profound and most original work upon Religion.

It is regarded as his best and most mature work. Conclusion: Comparing Marx And Durkheim When we compare Marx's thought to that of Durkheim – or indeed to that of other classical social theorists, including notably Max Weber – the former appears to underestimate the significance of social and cultural practices beyond the economic sphere.

Marx, Weber and Durkheim on Religion Marx, Weber and Durkheim together comprise the historical core of the sociological tradition. While they each come from very different perspectives and offer profound contributions to the field, they each have tried to address problems associated with the .

Marx vs. Durkheim | SOC Foundations of Sociological Theory