Rosalind Boyd PhD (28K)

Labour, Class and Capitalism


The profoundly dialectical concept of labour in Marx’s Critique (of Political Economy) — that is, labour viewed as a process that is simultaneously creative and alienating, liberating and enslaving — links it directly with its concept of ’development’. - Paresh Chattopadhyay (1987)

This module is written as one of many alternative courses on development in the CDS Handbook. It places the struggles of labouring people at the centre of critical development studies in the current phase of global capitalism, which is characterized by a worldwide crisis of poverty and obscene inequalities, mainly in the regions of the South.


The module begins with a critical review of theories and concepts related to the labour-capital relation. The other sections address the following: the informalization of labour and de-industrialization, the gender dimension of labour, manifestations of ’raw’ global capitalism, institutions of global capital and labour, and organizing by working people and the forces of resistance. Each section contains relevant readings for a course on labour, capital and development.

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