Marxist Theory

Our Group: Afsaana, Abby, Noah, Kadeem, and Sonny :)

The Creator of Marxist Theory and What is it?

  • Communist pioneer and German philosopher, Karl Marx, created the Marxist Theory in 1800s.
  • The theory states that all history is about class struggle
  • Ruling class --> Bourgeouisie = People that own the means of production
  • "Class Consciousness" = Being aware of where you stand in the class heirarchy

Strengths and Weaknesses:

  • Careful reading of the text
  • It isn't limited (takes social, historical, cultural context)


  • Some critics say this theory is only concerned with ideology
  • Critics say because of this focus on ideology, this theory can ignore reader experience.

Examples of Class Hierarchy:

TV Shows/Movies:

  1. Divergent
  2. The Hunger Games
  3. Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
  4. The Pursuit of Happiness

History/Today's Society:

  1. Rwanda Genocide (Hutus and Tatsi)
  2. Holocaust (German Jews)
  3. Slavery (Black and White People)
  4. Indian Caste System
The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air Funny Moments -- Season3 Part 1
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Questions Related To The Theory

1.Who has power ( and what kind of power) in the text ? how does the power operate and change as the text progresses ?

2.What "Master" or dominant social narratives are perpetuated or critiqued and disruptly in the text ?( for example , the American dream,whereby,with hard work and individual effort,a poor woman can achieve success)

3.To what degree does the protagonist or other characters believe in and live by the prevailing social order?

4.At what point(s) do the characters recognize the oppressiveness of the prevailing social order?

5.How is social objectification evident and how does it operate in the text?