By Ron Roberts

Psychology and Capitalism is a severe and available account of the ideological and fabric position of psychology in assisting capitalist company and preserving participants totally liable for their destiny throughout the merchandising of individualism.

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The high demand for jobs seriously weakens the power and inclinations of workers to stand up for issues like pay, rights, and job quality. 8 For those attempting to insulate themselves from the shifting currents of the labour market by investing in education, the old guarantee that educational credentials ensure a future of secure, well-paid and interesting work is also being eroded. 9 a provocation 43 Even if economic growth could manage to keep pace with the demand for jobs, what would be the environmental costs of continuing expansion?

Indulgence and escapism, far from being cultural taboos, are relentlessly encouraged in modern capitalist societies, but always with the drawback that their enjoyment requires us to heighten our commitment to work. In this account, mass consumption has not killed the work ethic but simply augmented it, taking the place of religion as society’s chief distraction from work’s more troubling realities. The value of historical perspectives is that they allow us to achieve some critical distance from the current work-centred state of affairs.

Weeks suggests that Weber’s The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism is particularly valuable in this regard, with its references to periods before and after the heyday of the Protestant work ethic inviting readers to grasp the peculiarity of modern society’s attachment to work. Readers are invited to reflect forwards, and consider the lofty status of work from the standpoint of the values inherent in the old, traditional society. What seems startling from this perspective is the limitlessness of the modern desire for material wealth, as well as the fact that work would one day operate as a main axis of identity.

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