Describe, in as much detail as you can, the process by which material goods and services used in daily life are produced under capitalism. Describe three ways in which this process is different than feudalism’s productive process.
Under capitalism material goods and services are produced on a daily basis under the term called capital. Capital is the means of production that consists of raw materials needed to create goods and the institution of human labor to either help convert the raw materials into goods or perform a nonmaterial good based service. This institution of labor is paid in exchange for their work through set hourly wages which are sometimes protected through means like minimum wage, working condition policies, and labor unions to bargain for workers’ wants and basic needs as a collective unit. Capitalism is much different than feudalism because of the fact that capitalism doesn’t have something crucial to how feudalism operates the lords and serfs system. In clear terms, serfs were workers bound to only work to an assigned piece of land unable to leave. These pieces of land were owned by lords who in exchange gave serfs protection and the ability to live on the land.
One way in which the capitalist process is different than feudalism’s productive process is the way workers are rewarded. Under capitalism, workers are paid in wages which is the price of labor-power expressed in currency. Wages are often set by competition, the costs of production, and the cost of living. Wages are paid by the hour and are usually protected through minimum wage laws. Under feudalism, workers are not paid wages but instead offered land in exchange for their work. On this land, they are also offered protection but must stay and work on their assigned piece of land.
Another way in which the capitalist process is different than feudalism’s productive process is the way employees have say against their employer in capitalism compared to feudalism. Under capitalism, workers can assemble what’s called a labor union. These labor unions collectively bargain in the workers’ best interest against their employers. They usually bargain for better wages, against the firing of workers, and for better working conditions. Under feudalism’s productive process serfs have absolutely no say against their lord counterparts. Meaning in capitalism workers can demand from their superiors but can’t under feudalism.
One more way in which the capitalist process is different than feudalism’s productive process is the way that land is assigned. Under capitalism, the land is privately owned by a private entity. While under feudalism land is owned by lords who were given the land by the king. Meaning under feudalism the higher class had access to land and under capitalism land can be bought.