Summarize how Mike Lefevre feels about his work. Do you think that many workers of today feel the same way?

  1. Summarize how Mike Lefevre feels about his work. Do you think that many workers of today feel the same way? Explain your opinion.
  2. Why would Lefevre rather have his kid be an “effete snob” than a factory worker?
  3. According to what Lefevre describes, what are some of the things that people resort to when their work is not fulfilling?
  4. How does Lefevre suggest that working conditions or workers’ self-esteem could be improved? Are these suggestions relevant today?
  5. What does it mean for a worker to be “alienated from his product”? Why does this happen? This answer should be at least five sentences; the fact that workers are alienated from the product of their labor is the main point of the Marx reading.
  6. With which of Marx’s points would Mike LeFevre definitely agree? Give at least two quotes from the Marx reading and then explain why LeFevre would agree with them.
  7. Relate Marx’s statement “The only moving forces that political economy recognizes are human greed and the war among the greedy” to our reading from the Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith in the previous module.
  8. What does Marx mean by “the more the worker produces, the less he has to consume,” and the other statements in the same paragraph? Restating the paragraph is not an answer. In other words, how is it possible that producing more leads a worker to be worth less, according to Marx?
  9. Marx claims that “The work [a laborer] does is not his own but another’s”. What does he mean? To whom does the work belong?
  10. Would Marx agree that higher wages (such as those brought about by a minimum wage) would solve the issues he is discussing? Give evidence.
  11. Based on the Adam Smith readings in this module, do you think that Adam Smith would agree with Karl Marx’s theory of the alienation of labor? Explain why or why not.
  12. Compare the first passage in the Smith reading to LeFevre’s description of his work.
  13. According to Smith, why are “masters” (employers) likely to prevail in disputes against working people?
  14. The three readings in this module describe similar topics. Which reading do you think is the most credible? Why?

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