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Think of the ways workers are alienated from the product and process of their jobs. How can these concepts be applied to students and their education?

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Karl Marx famously argued that low-tier workers in a capitalist economy are alienated from both the product and the act of production; they have no control over the product they make and are also deprived of the satisfaction of a job well done, having to work as a means of...

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Karl Marx famously argued that low-tier workers in a capitalist economy are alienated from both the product and the act of production; they have no control over the product they make and are also deprived of the satisfaction of a job well done, having to work as a means of survival as opposed to fulfillment.

One need look no further than retail giant Amazon for a modern-day example of Marx's ideology. Factory workers at billionaire Jeff Bezos' brainchild have no control over the limitless products of the company, and they are alienated from the act of production through an assembly line process that prioritizes speed at any cost.

It is possible to apply Marx's concepts to students and their education if you view the latter as a gateway to the capitalist economy. Large companies dictate the educational requirements of potential employees; students tailor their education to these requirements as opposed to their own interests, and thus, they are separated from their intellectual product.

Additionally, the competition for coveted positions in universities and, later, corporations can put so much pressure on students that they lose the satisfaction of learning; they view their studies as simply a means of survival, in the same way that Marx's workers view their jobs. Through this lens, students are also alienated from the act of production.

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