To what extent has capitalism and consumerism affected human relationships?

CLC’s team, led by Ms. Effy Mertzani, BA and MSc in Psychology, and CLC’s Psychology teacher, mentored and supervised our students David Jake, Papaioannou Georgia, Stratigopoulou Maira, Koutsi Nasia, and Sohos Helen to carry out a research project about the extent that capitalism and consumerism have affected human relationships.

Capitalism was described by Karl Marx as an antagonism between the owners of the physical capital- the machinery, and the working people producing all the wealth but not claiming any benefits for it. Marxism is a theory of economics that discusses the social class conflict by using materialistic interpretations. Dialectical materialism is the key essence of Marxism – the notion that everything in the world is materialistic, a concrete thing. The idea behind dialectical materialism is that all things are absolute; they shape our social and economic interactions. Same as capitalism, consumerism has caused conflict in relationships. With the economic growth and antagonism for power and wealth, we no longer purchase an item solely for its use, but mostly to accomplish a certain level of prestige or self-comfort. The aim of this paper is to investigate the extent to which capitalism and consumerism have distorted human relationships through the years and propose a solution for future investigation.

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