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The Socio Economic Link Between Town And Country

1672 words - 7 pages

Nowadays, nine tenth of the global population are residents of cities. This implies that urbanization reduced modern world to a state where the vast majority of population dwells in the urban areas. Nevertheless, peripheral regions constitute a substantial segment of a state`s socio-economic pattern. One of the most prominent philosophers of the nineteenth century, Karl Marx, in his extraordinary 1848 political treatise The Communist Manifesto, wrote, “The bourgeoisie has subjected the country to the rule of the towns. It has created enormous cities, has greatly increased the urban population as compared with the rural and has thus rescued a considerable part of the population from the idiocy of rural life. […] it has made the country dependent on the towns” (366). In fact, Marx establishes the idea that bourgeoisie by exploiting proletarians of rural areas encourages an essential social and economic inequality between town and country. Contrariwise, Adam Smith, one of the most influential economic thinkers of the eighteenth century, in his distinguished 1776 work Of the Natural Progress of Opulence, asserted, “The great commerce is that between town and country, which is obviously advantageous to both” (351). Inherently, Smith states the concept that country and town exist in a ‘mutual and reciprocal’ socio-economic causation and consent, in which both participants succeed in a relevant mode. To sum up, there is a significant discrepancy in Marx`s and Smith`s opinions. Specifically, Marx maintains that the country is obliged to submit to the absolute dominion of the town, or, by means of Smith`s formulation, ‘the gain of the town is the loss of the country,’ and oppositely Smith argues that there is country modifying town, and town modifying country. Thus, with reference to appropriate theory, this essay will examine the correlation of Marx`s and Smith`s views on the socio-economic link between town and country; additionally, it will discuss the aforecited Marx`s statement from a perspective of Smith`s arguments.
The bulk of Smith`s doctrine concerns the nature of wealth. For instance, in “Of the Natural Progress of Opulence,” Smith presents a microcosm of the ‘natural progression’ of capital. According to Smith, “The country supplies the town with the means of subsistence, and the materials of infrastructure. The town repays this supply by sending back a part of the manufactured produce to the inhabitants of the country” (351). Intrinsically, in this context Smith analyses the commodity monetary relations between town and country in order to reason the notion of elemental creation of wealth. Particularly, people in the country by performing agricultural activity and collecting natural resources produce a certain amount of food commodities and raw materials for manufacturing industry. Further, a part of this production is directed to sustain the rural community. In fact, as a result of resource distribution there is a...

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