Exploitation of labour

Exploitation of labour is the act of treating one's workers unfairly for one's own benefit. It is a social relationship based on an asymmetry in a power relationship between workers and their employers.[1] When speaking about exploitation, there is a direct affiliation with consumption in social theory and traditionally this would label exploitation as unfairly taking advantage of another person because of his or her inferior position, giving the exploiter the power.

Karl Marx, who is considered the most classical and influential theorist of exploitation, did not share the same traditional account of exploitation. Marx's theory explicitly rejects the moral framing characteristic of the notion of exploitation and restricts the concept to the field of labour relations. In analyzing exploitation, many political economists are often stuck between the explanation of the exploitation of labour given by Marx and Adam Smith.[2]

Marxist theory

Marx's exploitation theory is one of the major elements analyzed in Marxian economics and some social theorists consider it to be a cornerstone in Marxist thought. Marx credited the Scottish Enlightenment writers for originally propounding a materialist interpretation of history.[3] In his Critique of the Gotha Program, Marx set principles that were to govern the distribution of welfare under socialism and communism—these principles saw distribution to each person according to their work and needs. Exploitation is when these two principles are not met, when the agents are not receiving according to their work or needs.[4] This process of exploitation is a part of the redistribution of labour, occurring during the process of separate agents exchanging their current productive labour for social labour set in goods received.[5] The labour put forth toward production is embodied in the goods and exploitation occurs when someone purchases a good, with their revenue or wages, for an amount unequal to the total labour he or she has put forth.[6] This labour performed by a population over a certain time period is equal to the labour embodied to the goods that make up the net national product (NNP). The NNP is then parceled out to the members of the population in some way and this is what creates the two groups, or agents, involved in the exchange of goods: exploiters and exploited.[5]

The exploiters are the agents able to command goods, with revenue from their wages, that are embodied with more labour than the exploiters themselves have put forth- based on the exploitative social relations of capitalist production. These agents often have class status and ownership of productive assets that aid the optimization of exploitation. The exploiters would typically be the bourgeoisie. Meanwhile, the exploited are those who receive less than the average product he or she produces. If workers receive an amount equivalent to their average product, there is no revenue left over and therefore these workers cannot enjoy the fruits of their own labours and the difference between what is made and what that can purchase cannot be justified by redistribution according to need.[7] The exploited are the proletariat.[8]

Surplus labour and labour theory of value

Exploiters appropriate another's surplus labour, which is the amount of labour exceeding what is necessary for the reproduction of a worker's labour power and basic living conditions. In other terms, this entails the worker being able to maintain living conditions sufficient to be able to continue work. Marx does not attempt to tie this solely to capitalist institutions as he notes how historically, there are accounts of this appropriation of surplus labour in institutions with forced labour, like those based on slavery and feudal societies. However, the difference he emphasizes is the fact that when this appropriation of surplus labour occurs in societies like capitalist ones, it is occurring in institutions having abolished forced labour and resting on free labour.[1] This comes from Marx's labour theory of value which states that value is intrinsic in a product according to the amount of labour that has been spent on producing the product.

In a capitalist economy, workers are paid according to this value and value is the source of all wealth. Value is determined by a good's particular utility for an actor and if the good results from human activity, it must be understood as a product of concrete labour, qualitatively defined labour. Capitalists are able to purchase labour power from the workers, who can only bring their own labour power in the market. Once capitalists are able to pay the worker less than the value produced by their labour, surplus labour forms and this results in the capitalists' profits. This is what Marx meant by "surplus value", which he saw as "an exact expression for the degree of exploitation of labor-power by capital, or of the laborer by the capitalist".[9] This profit is used to pay for overhead and personal consumption by the capitalist, but was most importantly used to accelerate growth and thus promote a greater system of exploitation.[8]

The degree of exploitation of labour power is dictated by the rate of surplus value as the proportion between surplus value/product and necessary value/product. The surplus value/product is the materialized surplus labour or surplus labour time while the necessary value/product is materialized necessary labour in regard to workers, like the reproduction of the labour power.[4] Marx called the rate of surplus value an "exact expression of the degree of exploitation of labour power by capital".[10] These theories ultimately demonstrate Marx's main issue with capitalism: it was not that capitalism was not an institution where the labour exchange is coercive, but that in this institution one class still becomes significantly more rich while the other becomes impoverished.

Critique and rejection

Many capitalist critics have pointed out that Marx assumes that capital owners contribute nothing to the process of production. They suggest that Marx should have allowed for two things: permit a fair profit on the risk of capital investment and allow for the efforts of management be paid their due.

David Ramsay Steele argues that marginal utility theory renders Marx's theory of exploitation untenable. According to this theoretical framework and assuming competitive market conditions, a worker's compensation is determined by his or her contribution to marginal output. Similarly, owners of machines and real estate are compensated according to the marginal productivity of their capital's contribution to marginal output. However, Steele notes that this does not in any way touch the ethical argument of socialists who acknowledge non-labour contributions to marginal output, but contend that it is illegitimate for a class of passive owners to receive an unearned income from ownership of capital and land.[11]

Meghnad Desai, Baron Desai observed that there is also the prospect of surplus value arising from sources other than labour and a classic given example is winemaking. When grapes are harvested and crushed, labour is used. However, when yeast is added and the grape juice is left to ferment in order to get wine, the value of wine exceeds that of the grapes significantly, yet labour contributes nothing to the extra value. Marx had ignored capital inputs due to placing them all together in constant capital—translating the wear and tear of capital in production in terms of its labour value. Yet examples such as this demonstrated that value and surplus value could come from somewhere other than labour.[12]

The theory has been opposed by Eugen Böhm von Bawerk among others. In History and Critique of Interest Theories (1884), he argues that capitalists do not exploit their workers as they actually help employees by providing them with an income well in advance of the revenue from the goods they produced, stating: "Labor cannot increase its share at the expense of capital". In particular, he argues that the theory of exploitation ignores the dimension of time in production. From this criticism, it follows that according to Böhm-Bawerk the whole value of a product is not produced by the worker, but that labour can only be paid at the present value of any foreseeable output.[13]

John Roemer studied and criticized Marx's theory by putting forth a model to deal with exploitation in all modes of production, hoping to lay the foundations for an analysis of the laws of motion of socialism. In his works published in the 1980s, Roemer posits a model of exploitation based upon unequal ownership of human (physical labour skills) and non-human property (land and means of production). He states that this model of property rights has great superiority over the conventional surplus labour model of exploitation, therefore rejecting the labour theory of value.[5] In his attempt to put forward a theory of exploitation that also includes feudal, capitalist and socialist modes of production, he defines exploitation in each of the modes in terms of property rights. Roemer rejects the labour theory of value because he sees that exploitation can exist in the absence of employment relations, like in a subsistence economy, therefore backing the model of exploitation that is based on property rights. He tests his theory of exploitation using game theory to construct contingently feasible alternative states where the exploited agents could improve their welfare by withdrawing with their share of society's alienable and inalienable assets.[5] Feudal, capitalist and socialist exploitation all come from the theory of exploitation on the basis of inequitable distribution of property rights. There has been a range of agreement and disagreement from various economists, neo-classical economists favoring the model the most.

Some theorists criticize Roemer for his entire rejection of the labour theory of value and the surplus labour approach to exploitation, for they were the central aspects of Marxist thought in regard to exploitation.[14] Others criticize his commitment to a specifically liberal as opposed to a Marxist account of the wrongs of exploitation.[15]

Other theories

Liberal theory

Many assume that liberalism intrinsically lacks any adequate theory of exploitation because its phenomenon commits itself only to the primacy of personal rights and liberties and to individual choice as the basic explanatory datum. Hillel Steiner provided an argument to refute the claim that liberalism cannot supply an adequate theory of exploitation.[16] He discusses interpersonal transfers and how there are three types: donation, exchange and theft. Exchange is the only of the three that consists of a voluntary bilateral transfer, where the beneficiary receives something at a value greater than zero on the shared scale of value, although at times there can be ambiguity between more complex types of transfer. He describes the three dimensions of transfers as either unilateral/bilateral, voluntary/involuntary and equal/unequal. Despite these types of transfers being able to distinguish the differences in the four types of transfers, it is not enough to provide a differentiating characterization of exploitation. Unlike theft, an exploitative transfer is bilateral and the items are transferred voluntarily at both unequal and greater-than-zero value. The difference between a benefit and exploitation despite their various shared features is a difference between their counterfactual presuppositions, meaning that in an exploitation there is a voluntary bilateral transfer of unequally valued items because the possessors of both items would voluntarily make the transfer if the items to be transferred were of equal value, but in a benefit the possessor of the higher-value item would not voluntarily make the transfer if the items were at equal value. Put simply, the exploitation can be converted to an exchange: both exploiters and exploited would voluntarily become exchangers when benefactors would not.

In an exploitation both transfers are voluntary, but part of one of the two transfers is unnecessary. The circumstances that bring out exploitation are not the same as what brings about exploitative transfers. Exploitative circumstance is due to the factors other than what motivates individuals to engage in nonaltruistic bilateral transfers (exchanges and exploitations) as they are not sufficient circumstances to bring about exploitative transfers.

To further explain the occurrence of exploitative circumstances certain generalizations about social relations must be included to supply generalizations about social institutions. He saysthat 'if (i) certain things are true of the institutions within which interpersonal transfers occur and (ii) at least some of these transfers are nonaltruistic bilateral ones, then at least some of these transfers are exploitative.[17] Steiner looks at the institutional conditions of exploitation and finds that in general exploitation is considered unjust and to understand why it is necessary to look at the concept of a right, an inviolable domain of practical choice and the way rights are established to form social institutions. Institutional exploitation can be illustrated by schematized forms of exploitation to reach two points:

  1. Despite the mode of deprivation in exploitation, it is not the same as the mode involved in a violation of rights and it does result from such violations and the two deprivations may be of the same value.
  2. Rights violation (theft) is a bilateral relation, but exploitation is trilateral one. There are at least three persons needed for exploitation.

On a liberal view, exploitation can be described as a quadrilateral relation between four relevantly distinct parties: the state, the exploited, the exploiter and those who suffer rights violations. However, it can be argued that the state's interests with the exploiters action can be viewed as unimpeachable because you cannot imply that the exploiter would ever withhold consent from exploiting due to altruistic concerns. So this trilateral conception of exploitation identifies exploited, exploiters and sufferers of rights violations.

In terms of ridding exploitation, the standard liberal view holds that a regime of laissez-faire is a necessary condition. Natural rights thinkers Henry George and Herbert Spencer reject this view and claim that property rights belong to everyone, i.e. that all land to be valid must belong to everyone. Their argument aims to show that traditional liberalism is mistaken in holding that nonintervention in commerce is the key to non exploitation and they argue it is necessary, but not sufficient.

Neoclassical notions

The majority of neoclassical economists only would view exploitation existing as an abstract deduction of the classic school and of Ricardo's theory of surplus-value.[4] However, in some neoclassical economic theories exploitation is defined by the unequal marginal productivity of workers and wages, such that wages are lower. Exploitation is sometimes viewed to occur when a necessary agent of production receives less wages than its marginal product.[18] Neoclassical theorists also identify the need for some type of redistribution of income to the poor, disable, to the farmers and peasants, or whatever socially alienated group from the social welfare function. However, it is not true that neoclassical economists would accept the marginal productivity theory of just income as a general principle like other theorists do when addressing exploitation. The general neoclassical view sees that all factors can be simultaneously rewarded according to their marginal productivity: this means that factors of production should be awarded according to their marginal productivity as well, Euler's theorem for homogeneous function of the first order proves this:

f(K,L)= fK(K,L)K+fL(K,L)L

The production function where K is capital and L is labour. Neoclassical theory requires that f be continuously differentiable in both variables and that there are constant returns to scale. If there are constant returns to scale, there will be perfect equilibrium if both capital and labour are rewarded according to their marginal products, exactly exhausting the total product.

The primary concept is that there is exploitation towards a factor of production, if it receives less than its marginal product. Exploitation can only occur in imperfect capitalism due to imperfect competition, with the neoclassical notion of productivity wages there is little to no exploitation in the economy.[19] This blames monopoly in the product market, monopsony in the labour market and cartellization as the main causes for exploitation of workers.

In developing nations

Developing nations (commonly called "Third World" countries) are the focus of much debate over the issue of exploitation, particularly in the context of the global economy.

For instance, critics of foreign companies allege that firms such as Nike and Gap Inc. resort to child labour and sweatshops in developing nations, paying their workers wages far lower than those that prevail in developed nations (where the products are sold). It is argued that this is insufficient to allow workers to attain the local subsistence standard of living if working hours common in the First World are observed, so that working hours much longer than in the first world are necessary. It is also argued that work conditions in these developing world factories are more unsafe and much more unhealthy than in the First World. For example, observers point to cases where employees were unable to escape factories burning down—and thus dying—because of locked doors, a common signal that sweatshop conditions exist. The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire of 1911 was another example, but it occurred in the United States. so the First World of then is the equivalent of the Third World of today.

Others argue that in the absence of compulsion the only way that corporations are able to secure adequate supplies of labour is to offer wages and benefits superior to preexisting options and that the presence of workers in corporate factories indicates that the factories present options which are seen as better—by the workers themselves—than the other options available to them (see principle of revealed preference).

A common response is that this is disingenuous as the companies are in fact exploiting people by the terms of unequal human standards (applying lower standards to their Third World workers than to their First World ones). Furthermore, the argument goes that if people choose to work for low wages and in unsafe conditions because it is their only alternative to starvation or scavenging from garbage dumps (the "preexisting options"), this cannot be seen as any kind of "free choice" on their part. It also argued that if a company intends to sell its products in the First World, it should pay its workers by First World standards.

Following such a view, some in the United States propose that the American government should mandate that businesses in foreign countries adhere to the same labour, environmental, health and safety standards as the United States before they are allowed to trade with businesses in the United States (this has been advocated by Howard Dean, for example). They believe that such standards would improve the quality of life in less developed nations.

According to others, this would harm the economies of less developed nations by discouraging the United States from investing in them. Milton Friedman was an economist who thought that such a policy would have that effect.[20] According to this argument, the result of ending perceived exploitation would therefore be the corporation pulling back to its developed nation, leaving their former workers out of a job.

Groups who see themselves as fighting against global exploitation also point to secondary effects such as the dumping of government-subsidized corn on developing world markets which forces subsistence farmers off of their lands, sending them into the cities or across borders in order to survive. More generally, some sort of international regulation of transnational corporations is called for, such as the enforcement of the International Labour Organization's labour standards.

The fair trade movement seeks to ensure a more equitable treatment of producers and workers, therefore minimizing exploitation of labour forces in developing countries. The exploitation of labour is not limited to the aforementioned large scale corporate outsourcing, but it can also be found within the inherent structure of local markets in developing countries like Kenya.[21]

Wage labour

Wage labour as institutionalized under today's market economic systems has been criticized,[22] especially by both mainstream socialists and anarcho-syndicalists,[23][24][25][26] utilising the pejorative term wage slavery.[27][28] They regard the trade of labour as a commodity as a form of economic exploitation rooting partially from capitalism.

As per Noam Chomsky, analysis of the psychological implications of wage slavery goes back to the Enlightenment era. In his 1791 book On the Limits of State Action, liberal thinker Wilhelm von Humboldt posited that "whatever does not spring from a man's free choice, or is only the result of instruction and guidance, does not enter into his very nature; he does not perform it with truly human energies, but merely with mechanical exactness" and so when the labourer works under external control "we may admire what he does, but we despise what he is".[29] Both the Milgram and Stanford experiments have been found useful in the psychological study of wage-based workplace relations.[30]

Additionally, Marxists posit that labour as commodity, which is how they regard wage labour,[31] provides an absolutely fundamental point of attack against capitalism.[32] "It can be persuasively argued", noted one concerned philosopher, "that the conception of the worker's labor as a commodity confirms Marx's stigmatisation of the wage system of private capitalism as 'wage-slavery;' that is, as an instrument of the capitalist's for reducing the worker's condition to that of a slave, if not below it".[33]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Exploitation", Encyclopedia of Power, SAGE Publications, Inc.
  2. ^ Horace L. Fairlamb, 'Adam's Smith's Other Hand: A Capitalist Theory of Exploitation', Social Theory and Practice, 1996
  3. ^ Andrew Reeve, Modern Theories of Exploitation"
  4. ^ a b c Jon Elster, "Exploring Exploitation", The Journal of Peace Research, Vol. 15, No. 1, pp. 3-17
  5. ^ a b c d John E. Roemer, 'Should Marxists be Interested in Exploitation', Philosophy & Public Affairs, Vol. 14, No. 1, 1985, pg 30-65
  6. ^ John E. Roemer, "Origins of Exploitation and Class: Value Theory of Pre-Capitalist Economy", Econometrica, Vol. 50, No. 1, 1982, pp. 163-192
  7. ^ Jon Elster, "Exploring Exploitation", The Journal of Peace Research, Vol. 15, No. 1, pp. 3-17
  8. ^ a b "Exploitation", Encyclopedia of Social Theory, SAGE Publications, Inc.
  9. ^ Marx, Karl. [1867] 1967. Capital: A Critique of Political Economy, vol. 1. New York: International Publishers.
  10. ^ Karl Marx, Capital, Vol. 1, as translated in J. Furner, Marx on Capitalism: The Interaction-Recognition-Antinomy Thesis, Brill 2018, p. 233, ISBN 978-90-04-32331-5, which also explains the significance of the difference between this translation of Marx's phrase, and the translation reproduced earlier in this Wikipedia entry, which, Furner argues, is wrong.
  11. ^ Steele, David Ramsay (September 1999). From Marx to Mises: Post Capitalist Society and the Challenge of Economic Calculation. Open Court. p. 143. ISBN 978-0875484495. One of the fateful consequences of marginal productivity is that it sweeps away such theories as Marx’s which see interest as ‘unpaid labour’. Under competitive market conditions, a worker tends to be paid what his labour contributes to output, no more and no less. The same goes for an owner of a machine or piece of real estate. The analysis demonstrates the symmetry of all types of inputs: there is as much sense as saying that labour exploits capital, or that electricity exploits roofing tiles. Of course, this does not touch the ethical arguments of socialists who acknowledge that non-labour factors make a determinate contribution to output, analytically separable from labour’s contribution, yet still contend that it is illegitimate for anyone to own capital or land and reap the payment for their services. But that is not the position of Marx, nor many other socialists.
  12. ^ Desai, Meghnad, Marx's Revenge: The Resurgence of Capitalism and the Death of Statist Socialism, 2002, Verso Books, page 264
  13. ^ "Böhm-Bawerk's Critique of the Exploitation Theory of Interest | Mises Daily". Mises.org. 2004-11-26. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  14. ^ Khalid Nadvi, 'Exploitation and Labour Theory Of Value: A Critique of Roemer's Theory of Exploitation and Class', Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. 20, No. 25, 1985, 1479-1494
  15. ^ For example, Allen W. Wood, Karl Marx (Routledge 2004) and Nicolas Vrousalis, 'Exploitation, Vulnerability and Social Domination', Philosophy and Public Affairs, Vol. 41, 2013, 131-157
  16. ^ Hillel Steiner, 'A Liberal Theory of Exploitation', Ethics, Vol. 94, No. 2, 1984, pp. 225-241
  17. ^ Hillel Steiner, 'A Liberal Theory of Exploitation', Ethics, Vol. 94, No. 2, 1984, pp. 229
  18. ^ J. Schumpter, The theory of economic development, Harvard University Press, 1949
  19. ^ Milan Zafirovski, 'Measuring and Making Sense of Labor Exploitation in Contemporary Society: A Comparative Analysis', Review of Radical Political Economies, 2003, Vol. 35, no. 4, pp. 462-484
  20. ^ Hawkins, John (2015-03-25). "An Interview With Milton Friedman | John Hawkins' Right Wing News". Rightwingnews.com. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  21. ^ Martinus van Tilborgh. "How do we find our artists". Villagemarkets.org. Retrieved 2015-10-20.
  22. ^ Ellerman 1992.
  23. ^ Thompson 1966, p. 599.
  24. ^ Thompson 1966, p. 912.
  25. ^ Ostergaard 1997, p. 133.
  26. ^ Lazonick 1990, p. 37.
  27. ^ "Wage Slave". Merriam Webster. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  28. ^ "wage slave". Dictionary.com. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  29. ^ Chomsky 1993, p. 19
  30. ^ Thye & Lawler 2006.
  31. ^ Marx 1990, p. 1006: "[L]abour-power, a commodity sold by the worker himself."
  32. ^ Another one, of course, being the capitalists' alleged theft from workers via surplus-value.
  33. ^ Nelson 1995, p. 158. This Marxist objection is what motivated Nelson's essay, which claims that labour is not, in fact, a commodity.

External links


Anti-capitalism encompasses a wide variety of movements, ideas and attitudes that oppose capitalism. Anti-capitalists, in the strict sense of the word, are those who wish to replace capitalism with another type of economic system.

Banana republic

In political science, the term banana republic describes a politically unstable country with an economy dependent upon the exportation of a limited-resource product, such as bananas or minerals. In 1901, the American author O. Henry coined the term to describe Honduras and neighbouring countries under economic exploitation by U.S. corporations, such as the United Fruit Company. Typically, a banana republic has a society of extremely stratified social classes, usually a large impoverished working class and a ruling-class plutocracy, composed of the business, political and military elites of that society. Such a ruling-class oligarchy control the primary sector of the economy by way of the exploitation of labour; thus, the term banana republic is a pejorative descriptor for a servile dictatorship that abets and supports, for kickbacks, the exploitation of large-scale plantation agriculture, especially banana cultivation.In economics, a banana republic is a country with an economy of state capitalism, by which economic model the country is operated as a private commercial enterprise for the exclusive profit of the ruling class. Such exploitation is enabled by collusion between the state and favored economic monopolies, in which the profit, derived from the private exploitation of public lands, is private property, while the debts incurred thereby are the financial responsibility of the public treasury. Such an imbalanced economy remains limited by the uneven economic development of town and country, and usually reduces the national currency into devalued banknotes (paper money), rendering the country ineligible for international development credit.

Communist society

In Marxist thought, communist society or the communist system is the type of society and economic system postulated to emerge from technological advances in the productive forces, representing the ultimate goal of the political ideology of communism. A communist society is characterized by common ownership of the means of production with free access to the articles of consumption and is classless and stateless, implying the end of the exploitation of labour.Communism is a specific stage of socioeconomic development predicated upon a superabundance of material wealth, which is postulated to arise from advances in production technology and corresponding changes in the social relations of production. This would allow for distribution based on need and social relations based on freely-associated individuals.The term "communist society" should be distinguished from the Western concept of the "communist state", the latter referring to a state ruled by a party which professes a variation of Marxism–Leninism.


Exploit means to take advantage of something (a person, situation, etc.) for one's own end, especially unethically or unjustifiably.

Exploit can mean:

Exploit (natural resources)

Exploit (computer security)

Exploit (video gaming)

Exploitation of labour, Marxist and other sociological aspects


Exploitation may refer to:

Exploitation of natural resources

Exploitation of labour

Exploitation fiction

Exploitation film

Exploitation (film), a 2012 film

Sexual slavery

Identity politics

The term identity politics in common usage refers to a tendency of people sharing a particular racial, religious, ethnic, social, or cultural identity to form exclusive political alliances, instead of engaging in traditional broad-based party politics, or promote their particular interests without regard for interests of a larger political group. In academic usage, the term has been used to refer to a wide range of political activities and theoretical analysis rooted in experiences of injustice shared by different social groups. In this usage, identity politics typically aim to reclaim greater self-determination and political freedom for marginalized groups through understanding their distinctive nature and challenging externally imposed characterizations, instead of organizing solely around belief systems or party affiliations. Identity is used as a tool to articulate political claims, promote political ideologies, and guide political action with the aim of asserting group distinctiveness and gaining power and recognition in the context of perceived inequality or injustice.The term identity politics has been in use in various forms since the 1960s or 1970s, but has been applied with, at times, radically different meanings by different populations. It has gained currency with the emergence of social movements such as the women's movement, the civil rights movement in the U.S., the LGBTQ movement, as well as nationalist and postcolonial movements.Examples include identity politics based on age, religion, social class or caste, culture, deafhood, dialect, disability, education, ethnicity, language, nationality, sex, gender identity, generation, occupation, profession, race, political party affiliation, sexual orientation, settlement, urban and rural habitation, and veteran status.

Illegal immigration

Illegal immigration refers to the migration of people into a country in ways that violate the immigration laws of that country, or the remaining in a country of people who no longer have the legal right to remain.

Illegal immigration, as well as immigration in general, is overwhelmingly financially upward, from a poorer to a richer country. Living in another country illegally includes a variety of restrictions, as well as the risk of being detained and deported or of facing other sanctions.Asylum seekers who were denied asylum may face impediment to expulsion, for example if the home country refuses to receive the person or if new asylum reasons occur after the decision. In some countries or cases, these people are considered as illegal immigrants, and in others, they may get a temporary residence permit, for example with reference to the principle of non-refoulement in the international Refugee Convention. The European Court of Human Rights, referring to the European Convention on Human Rights, has shown in a number of indicative judgments that there are enforcement barriers to expulsion to certain countries, for example due to the risk of torture.

Market (economics)

A market is one of the many varieties of systems, institutions, procedures, social relations and infrastructures whereby parties engage in exchange. While parties may exchange goods and services by barter, most markets rely on sellers offering their goods or services (including labor) in exchange for money from buyers. It can be said that a market is the process by which the prices of goods and services are established. Markets facilitate trade and enable the distribution and resource allocation in a society. Markets allow any trade-able item to be evaluated and priced. A market emerges more or less spontaneously or may be constructed deliberately by human interaction in order to enable the exchange of rights (cf. ownership) of services and goods. Markets generally supplant gift economies and are often held in place through rules and customs, such as a booth fee, competitive pricing, and source of goods for sale (local produce or stock registration).

Markets can differ by products (goods, services) or factors (labour and capital) sold, product differentiation, place in which exchanges are carried, buyers targeted, duration, selling process, government regulation, taxes, subsidies, minimum wages, price ceilings, legality of exchange, liquidity, intensity of speculation, size, concentration, exchange asymmetry, relative prices, volatility and geographic extension. The geographic boundaries of a market may vary considerably, for example the food market in a single building, the real estate market in a local city, the consumer market in an entire country, or the economy of an international trade bloc where the same rules apply throughout. Markets can also be worldwide, see for example the global diamond trade. National economies can also be classified as developed markets or developing markets.

In mainstream economics, the concept of a market is any structure that allows buyers and sellers to exchange any type of goods, services and information. The exchange of goods or services, with or without money, is a transaction. Market participants consist of all the buyers and sellers of a good who influence its price, which is a major topic of study of economics and has given rise to several theories and models concerning the basic market forces of supply and demand. A major topic of debate is how much a given market can be considered to be a "free market", that is free from government intervention. Microeconomics traditionally focuses on the study of market structure and the efficiency of market equilibrium; when the latter (if it exists) is not efficient, then economists say that a market failure has occurred. However it is not always clear how the allocation of resources can be improved since there is always the possibility of government failure.


Progressivism is the support for or advocacy of improvement of society by reform. As a philosophy, it is based on the idea of progress, which asserts that advancements in science, technology, economic development and social organization are vital to the improvement of the human condition.

The meanings of progressivism have varied over time and from different perspectives. Progressivism became highly significant during the Age of Enlightenment in Europe, out of the belief that Europe was demonstrating that societies could progress in civility from uncivilized conditions to civilization through strengthening the basis of empirical knowledge as the foundation of society. Figures of the Enlightenment believed that progress had universal application to all societies and that these ideas would spread across the world from Europe.The contemporary common political conception of progressivism in the culture of the Western world emerged from the vast social changes brought about by industrialization in the Western world in the late-19th century. Progressives in the early-20th century took the view that progress was being stifled by vast economic inequality between the rich and the poor; minimally regulated laissez-faire capitalism with monopolistic corporations; and intense and often violent conflict between workers and capitalists, thus claiming that measures were needed to address these problems. Early-20th century progressivism was also tied to eugenics and the temperance movement. Contemporary progressives promote public policies that they believe will lead to positive social change.

Rate of exploitation

In Marxian economics, the rate of exploitation is the ratio of surplus value to variable capital.

Resham Ki Dori

Resham Ki Dori is a 1974 Bollywood film starring Dharmendra and Saira Banu. The film was rated "above average" at the box office.

Resource justice

Resource justice (also referred to as "resource equity" or "resource governance") is a term in environmentalism and in environmental ethics. It combines elements of distributive justice and climate justice and is based on the observation that many countries rich in natural resources such as minerals and other raw materials nevertheless experience high levels of poverty. This resource curse is one of the main ethical reasons to demand resource justice, that is, a globally fair distribution of all natural resources.

Richie Venton

Richie Venton (born 1953) is a Scottish trade unionist and political activist. As of 2018, he is one of two Scottish representatives on the National Executive Council of the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers (USDAW) and the national trade union organiser of the Scottish Socialist Party. A former Militant organiser and a founding member of the SSP, he was a high-profile activist in the Scottish independence referendum campaign and spoke at a number of public meetings and debates.

Schools of economic thought

In the history of economic thought, a school of economic thought is a group of economic thinkers who share or shared a common perspective on the way economies work. While economists do not always fit into particular schools, particularly in modern times, classifying economists into schools of thought is common. Economic thought may be roughly divided into three phases: premodern (Greco-Roman, Indian, Persian, Islamic, and Imperial Chinese), early modern (mercantilist, physiocrats) and modern (beginning with Adam Smith and classical economics in the late 18th century). Systematic economic theory has been developed mainly since the beginning of what is termed the modern era.

Currently, the great majority of economists follow an approach referred to as mainstream economics (sometimes called 'orthodox economics'). Within the mainstream in the United States, distinctions can be made between the Saltwater school (associated with Cornell, Berkeley, Harvard, MIT, Pennsylvania, Princeton, and Yale), and the more laissez-faire ideas of the Freshwater school (represented by the Chicago school of economics, Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Rochester and the University of Minnesota). Both of these schools of thought are associated with the neoclassical synthesis.

Some influential approaches of the past, such as the historical school of economics and institutional economics, have become defunct or have declined in influence, and are now considered heterodox approaches. Other longstanding heterodox schools of economic thought include Austrian economics and Marxian economics. Some more recent developments in economic thought such as feminist economics and ecological economics adapt and critique mainstream approaches with an emphasis on particular issues rather than developing as independent schools.

The Iron Heel

The Iron Heel is a dystopian novel by American writer Jack London, first published in 1907.

Generally considered to be "the earliest of the modern dystopian" fiction, it chronicles the rise of an oligarchic tyranny in the United States. It is arguably the novel in which Jack London's socialist views are most explicitly on display. A forerunner of soft science fiction novels and stories of the 1960s and '70s, the book stresses future changes in society and politics while paying much less attention to technological changes.The book is unusual among London's writings (and in the literature of the time in general) in being a first-person narrative of a woman protagonist written by a man. Much of the narrative is set in the San Francisco Bay Area, including events in San Francisco and Sonoma County.

The White Man's Burden

The White Man's Burden: The United States and the Philippine Islands (1899), by Rudyard Kipling, is a poem about the Philippine–American War (1899–1902), which exhorts the U.S. to assume colonial control of the Filipino people and their country.Kipling originally wrote the poem to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria (22 June 1897), but it was replaced with the sombre poem "Recessional" (1897), also a Kipling work about empire. He rewrote "The White Man's Burden" to encourage American colonization and annexation of the Philippine Islands, a Pacific Ocean archipelago conquered in the three-month Spanish–American War (1898). As a poet of imperialism, Kipling exhorts the American reader and listener to take up the enterprise of empire, yet warns about the personal costs faced, endured, and paid in building an empire; nonetheless, American imperialists understood the phrase The white man's burden to justify imperial conquest as a mission-of-civilisation that is ideologically related to the continental-expansion philosophy of Manifest Destiny.The title, the subject, and the themes of "The White Man's Burden" provoke accusations of advocacy of the Eurocentric racism inherent to the idea that, by way of industrialisation, the Western world delivers civilisation to the non-white peoples of the world.

Voluntary exchange

Voluntary exchange is the act of buyers and sellers freely and willingly engaging in market transactions. Moreover, transactions are made in such a way that both the buyer and the seller are better off after the exchange than before it occurred.Voluntary exchange is also a fundamental assumption made by neoclassical economics, which forms the basis of contemporary mainstream economics. That is, when neoclassical economists theorize about the world, they assume voluntary exchange is taking place. Building on this assumption, neoclassical economics goes on to conclude a variety of important results, such as that market activity is efficient, that free trade has net positive effects, and that markets in which economic agents participate voluntarily make them better off. Notably, neoclassical economists—having made the assumption of voluntary exchange—thus deny the Marxist definition of the exploitation of labour as a possibility within neoclassically-defined capitalism. Marxian economics, one of the major alternatives to neoclassical economics, contends that the exploitation of labor is both possible and a definitional condition of the capitalist mode of production, among other modes of production.

Mainstream economists have shown that voluntary exchanges are more conducive to economic efficiency than exchanges mandated by governments. On the other hand, there is no theoretical basis for arguing that partially or completely involuntary exchange is preferable to other arrangements, such as government mandates.Voluntary exchange is sometimes at the root of arguments about the morality of markets. Market proponents often invoke the morality as well as the efficiency of voluntary exchange to argue against government mandates, including many forms of taxation. The morality of markets, even those rarely adhering to true voluntary exchange, are nonetheless in dispute.

Wage slavery

Wage slavery is a term used to draw an analogy between slavery and wage labor by focusing on similarities between owning and renting a person. It is usually used to refer to a situation where a person's livelihood depends on wages or a salary, especially when the dependence is total and immediate.The term "wage slavery" has been used to criticize exploitation of labour and social stratification, with the former seen primarily as unequal bargaining power between labor and capital (particularly when workers are paid comparatively low wages, e.g. in sweatshops) and the latter as a lack of workers' self-management, fulfilling job choices and leisure in an economy. The criticism of social stratification covers a wider range of employment choices bound by the pressures of a hierarchical society to perform otherwise unfulfilling work that deprives humans of their "species character" not only under threat of starvation or poverty, but also of social stigma and status diminution.Similarities between wage labor and slavery were noted as early as Cicero in Ancient Rome, such as in De Officiis. With the advent of the Industrial Revolution, thinkers such as Pierre-Joseph Proudhon and Karl Marx elaborated the comparison between wage labor and slavery, while Luddites emphasized the dehumanization brought about by machines. Before the American Civil War, Southern defenders of African American slavery invoked the concept of wage slavery to favorably compare the condition of their slaves to workers in the North. The United States abolished slavery after the Civil War, but labor union activists found the metaphor useful and appropriate. According to Lawrence Glickman, in the Gilded Age "[r]eferences abounded in the labor press, and it is hard to find a speech by a labor leader without the phrase".The introduction of wage labor in 18th-century Britain was met with resistance, giving rise to the principles of syndicalism. Historically, some labor organizations and individual social activists have espoused workers' self-management or worker cooperatives as possible alternatives to wage labor.

Wage theft

Wage theft is the denial of wages or employee benefits rightfully owed an employee. It can be conducted by employers in various ways, among them failing to pay overtime; violating minimum-wage laws; the misclassification of employees as independent contractors, illegal deductions in pay; forcing employees to work "off the clock", or simply not paying an employee at all.

According to some studies, wage theft is common in the United States, particularly from low wage legal or undocumented immigrant workers. The Economic Policy Institute reported in 2014 that survey evidence suggests wage theft costs US workers billions of dollars a year. Some rights violated by wage theft have been guaranteed to workers in the United States in the 1938 Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

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