Marxist class analysis: A living tradition in Australian scholarship

Journal article

Barnes, Tom and Cahill, Damien. (2013). Marxist class analysis: A living tradition in Australian scholarship. Journal of Australian Political Economy. 70, pp. 48 - 69.
AuthorsBarnes, Tom and Cahill, Damien

The Marxist approach to class has long been criticised within the academy. Many scholars have suggested it is no longer relevant, if indeed, it ever was, for understanding contemporary economies and societies. This article examines the recent trajectory of class analysis in Australia within the context of such criticism and changes within the capitalist economy and society that some claim make Marxist class analysis redundant. The article contends that such critiques significantly misinterpret the Marxist conception of class and miss recent developments within Marxist class analysis which attempt to account for changes within the capitalist economy. Using an empirical study of class in Australian social science journals, the authors find indicative evidence of a fragmentation of scholarship, with small groups of researchers continuing to produce innovative ideas about class in a context in which class has declined as a source of debate and interaction, particularly among sociologists. The article concludes that Marxist class analysis remains a living tradition in Australian scholarship.

JournalJournal of Australian Political Economy
Journal citation70, pp. 48 - 69
PublisherSchool of Economics, University of Sydney
Scopus EID2-s2.0-84878745478
Web address (URL)
Page range48 - 69
Research GroupInstitute for Religion, Politics, and Society
Publisher's version
File Access Level
Place of publicationAustralia
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