It is towards the end of the Middle Ages , in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, the bourgeoisie is gaining a central place in society. This social class acquires economic power through the market that during these centuries begins to grow in importance along with the cities . The peculiarity of the bourgeoisie is that it owns the means of production, for this condition they can hire other people to work for them in exchange for a salary (these are the proletarians ). The process by which the bourgeoisie was gaining power to occupy the highest place in society was slow and coincides with the passage from the feudal system to the capitalist system . Who were bourgeoisie?
This word is related to the word “burgos”, synonymous with fortress or “small cities”, since in the Middle Ages these cities were guarded by walled walls. This idea alludes to a small group with the purpose of seizing a “certain security” regarding money and capital goods. Within these boroughs were traders and craftsmen, worked as a center for trade, hence its importance arises . Let’s see more about the bourgeoisie and its origin.
Enhance your reading: Why was Napoleon exiled/childhood/glory to defeat/death
Who make up the Bourgeoisie?
The bourgeoisie is made up of those people who own the means of production . They are those who do not have to sell their labor power to survive, but live on the profit resulting from the work of salaried workers. The bourgeoisie obtains its profit by hiring workers producing for them , then sell their products through the market taking maximum advantage .
The bourgeoisie is the social class that owns a lot of money, has countless assets of its own and high monetary and financial income per month. Due to the impressive increase in their economic-financial power, they rose to a privileged status, which has assured them control over the means of production and dominance in the world political field. Who were bourgeoisie?
When and where did the Bourgeoisie begin?
In medieval western Europe a group was formed made up of people who exercised different professions in free exercise , some were merchants and other artisans, who did not belong to the group of feudal lords , who were the owners of the lands, which gave exploitation. Nor did he belong to the serfs of the gleba, who were peasants to whom the feudal lord gave the land, much less did he belong to the clerical class or the aristocratic class appointed by the king .
This small group of people was growing economically during the Middle Ages within the “borough” or small medieval towns . The rise of the bourgeois class occurred in the Middle Ages, which ran from the end of the Roman Empire , in the 5th century to the 15th century , through the growth and development of medieval cities. This group has capital at the center of its activities, that is, they seek to produce to generate a profit that they achieve through the market. This logic is different from that of the rest of society that produces to survive. These relationships did not occur only in the boroughs, but in the countryside relationships centered on capital also began to emerge: towards the end of the Middle Ages, in the 14th century, this class was formed, enriched peasants, who in some cases They escaped the control of the feudal lord, they could hire other dispossessed peasants who thus became economically dependent on the richest.
Here we see another logic begins to emerge in production, the production of goods (textiles principle) is organized the sole purpose of making profits on the market. Poor peasants (future proletarians ) are no longer tied to the man who pressed them so extraeconomic, that is, by violence, but the wealthy who hire them for money, although in some cases are tied to both .
Differences of the Bourgeoisie to other classes
Those who adopted the bourgeois lifestyle differed from those who participated in certain work activities such as merchants of clothing, jewelry, and spices; artisans and peasants by standing out in the development of progressive industrial activities that erected them as leaders who predominated for their ideologies, values and individual interests . Who were bourgeoisie?
The splendor of the bourgeoisie for its wealth and particular culture placed it first in society and this contradicted other privileged classes such as the nobility and the clergy . The development of universities from the thirteenth century benefited the bourgeois who could professionalize . In the following centuries capital was taking center stage in social relations . The capitalist logic gradually took over all areas of production and the market became the center of people’s lives. The domination of the bourgeoisie, both economically and politically, deepened with events such as theIndustrial Revolution and the French Revolution . The bourgeoisie wins the power struggle against the aristocracy, with the rise of capitalism the bourgeoisie dominates completely.
Enhance your reading: What does marquis mean/Characteristics/title/Competition
For Marxism , the bourgeoisie is preponderant due to its role in terms of capitalist mode of production, which is distinguished by its behavior in the organization of production and by the production relations it establishes with other classes, basically with the proletariat.
Its task is to seize the means of production to establish inequality with the proletariat, since these, not having means of production, are forced to sell their labor power, so the generation of surplus value, or what is the same, the Increase in the value of the goods produced in this work, facilitates the accumulation of capital that benefits the bourgeoisie. As an example: a worker in the shoe industry works 8 hours a day, in 4 hours he produces what is necessary to cover his salary (suppose it is 20 dollars), the remaining 4 hours works for the profit of the bourgeois, that is capital gain.
The bourgeois class was characterized from the beginning by presenting a model of behavior from the political, social and even religious point of view, which continues to prevail, it is described below:
- It is above the rest of society in terms of its exclusive and advantageous participation due to its ownership over the means of production. Who were bourgeoisie?
- What distinguishes it from other social classes is precisely the high level of monetary income or accumulated wealth .
- It does not ignore the rights of the rest of the citizens and respects the division of powers existing in the nation in its representative character.
- Claim your preference regarding your participation in political office.
- He is part of elite groups made up of prestigious men and women.
- Its profit comes from the capitalist world .
- They promote the distinction between their class and the class made up of people who do not have their own means of production and who sell their labor power in exchange for a salary or salary.
The values of the Bourgeoisie
As time passed, the bourgeoisie became the ruling class and then presented itself in defense of certain values and interests that sustain it and maintain its privileged status, displacing the old feudal regime in which another social group dominated. The center of the values that the bourgeoisie defends is private property, since its dominance and capacity for accumulation is based on it. In addition, the bourgeoisie defends:
- The rule of law , so that their rights and properties are respected.
- The division of powers , so that the State does not only assume all control over the economy and other areas.
- The existence of a representative and parliamentary political power , with the purpose of limiting the intervention of the State.
- Existence of civil liberties : freedom of expression, worship, press, demonstration, assembly, work, among others.
- Free market or freedom of business against union restrictions .
- Predominance of property due to private initiative .
- Economic liberalism , by virtue of the minimal intervention of the state in the country’s economy.
- Meritocracy, promotion or descent of people in the social ladder due to merits at work, which is evidenced by their triumph in the economic and intellectual aspect. This is a justification for their domination over the proletariat. Who were bourgeoisie?
- Democracy in defense of the rights of the people to choose and control their rulers .
- Nationalism in defense of political self-determination .
Karl Max used the bourgeois ideology as a criticism for the bourgeoisie and mentions that it is beneficial only for itself, that is why it defends itself , the capitalist system that puts the bourgeoisie at the top is also in charge of condemning to work for a salary to the vast majority of the population.
Marxism considers the bourgeoisie as the exploiting class of the capitalist system . The bourgeoisie’s desire for economic benefits condemns the proletariat and the planet itself to exploitation, destroying natural resources. Under the capitalist system, most people will have to work for a miserable salary, therefore, says Marx, the proletariat must be the subject that carries out the Revolution and seizes power for the benefit of the majority, removing the bourgeoisie from the top. and abolishing private property.
The capitalism and bourgeois class contradict their own values , which are summarized as follows:
- Democracy and its institutions are nothing but simple instruments of the ruling class.
- The functions of the State are carried out as long as the general interest and social development benefit the ruling bourgeois class.
- There really is no affinity between the bourgeoisie and democracy , and its struggle against this class is progressing more and more.
- The bourgeoisie is the main enemy of democracy because of its interests in obtaining private benefits.
- All of the above confirms the class struggle and strengthens the difference between the workers and the bosses or owners of the means of production, that is, the bourgeoisie who do not waste time to abuse the weak condition of the proletariat through their exploitation.
It should be noted that in all this there are only tiny favored groups in the capitalist scheme and, of course, we are talking about the “bourgeoisie”, who have made up an elite that historically has remained at all costs at the top of the pyramid. with total success and has taken care of anything that endangers his super powerful throne. As we have already mentioned in this article, exclusivity is what usually distinguishes this elite, as well as its hyperconcentration of wealth as part of the present world financial system, which has been to the detriment of the majority groups who have served them as leverage to the current pyramid cusp. Who were bourgeoisie?