What is the difference between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat?

The main difference between bourgeoisie and proletariat is that bourgeoisie refers to the capitalists who own the means of production and most of the wealth of society, while proletariat refers to a class of workers who have no means of production and have to sell their labor, to survive .

The bourgeoisie and the proletariat are the two most important social classes that Karl Marx identified in his theory of Marxism. Belonging to these two social groups depends on ownership of the means of production. In addition, these two social groups are interdependent; for the bourgeoisie the proletariat is a source of profit, while for the proletariat the bourgeois is a source of employment.

Key areas covered

1. What is bourgeoisie - definition, characteristics 2. What is proletariat - definition, characteristics 3. What is the relationship between bourgeoisie and proletariat - outline of the similarities 4. What is the difference between bourgeoisie and proletariat - comparison of main differences

key terms

Bourgeoisie, Marxist theory, proletariat

Difference Between Bourgeoisie and Proletariat - Comparative Summary

What is the bourgeoisie?

In Marxism, the bourgeoisie refers to the capitalist class who own most of the wealth and means of production of society. According to Karl Marx, the middle class in the Middle Ages consisted of business people such as bankers and merchants. Their economic role was similar to that of a mediator - between feudal lords and peasants .

Difference between bourgeoisie and proletariat

But at the time of the industrial revolution and capitalism , the bourgeoisie has become an economically powerful section of the population. They owned the means of production, that is, capital, land and property, and were in control of the means of coercion, that is, the legal system, the police, etc. This ownership of production enabled the bourgeoisie to exploit the wage workers, whose only economic means was their labor. Meanwhile, the possession of means of coercion helps the bourgeoisie to suppress the working class and maintain its status quo.

What is the proletariat?

In Marxism, the proletariat refers to a class of workers who have no means of production (no capital or property) and who survive by selling their labor. More precisely, these are wage earners who are engaged in industrial production and whose main income is the sale of their labor. In addition, this class is considered to be oppressed by the wage system and capitalism. In addition, proletariats often live in poverty. However, in Marxism the proletariat differs from workers, poor and ragged proletariat. Key difference - bourgeoisie vs. proletariat

According to Marxist theory, the oppression of the proletariat provides them with political and economic interests that enable them to unite and wrest power from the capitalists. This in turn will create a communist society that is free from class differences.

Relationship between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat

According to Marx, capitalism is based on the exploitation of the proletariat by the bourgeoisie. The proletariates who have no means of production use the means of production of others to produce goods and services to make a living. However, these goods and services become the property of the capitalists who own the means of production. So it is the capitalists who sell the goods and services in the market and make money.

Difference between bourgeoisie and proletariat

definition

Bourgeoisie refers to the capitalists who own the means of production and most of the wealth of society, while proletariat refers to wage earners who have no means of production and have to sell their labor to survive.

means of production

While the bourgeoisie owns the means of production, the proletariat has no means of production and lives by selling its labor.

exploitation

In addition, the bourgeoisie exploits the proletariat and makes massive profits. Proletariats exploited by the bourgeoisie generally earn a minimum wage and live in poverty.

diploma

Bourgeoisie refers to the capitalists who own the means of production and most of the wealth of society, while the proletariat refers to a class of workers who have no means of production and who have to sell their labor to survive. So this is the main difference between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. Furthermore, according to Karl Marx, capitalism is based on the exploitation of the proletariat by the bourgeoisie.

Reference:

1. "Proletariat". Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., September 26, 2017, available here . "Bourgeoisie." Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, December 21, 2019, available here .

Image courtesy:

1. "Evil Wordle: The Communist Manifesto of Marx and Engles" by Purple Slog (CC BY 2.0) via Flickr 2. "Capitalism" by Ryan Cragun - Own work (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia

About the author: Hasa

Hasa holds a BA in English, French and Translation Studies. She is currently reading for a Masters in English. Her areas of interest include literature, language, linguistics and also food.