Discussion Of The Impact Of The Media

Introduction

Capitalism refers basically to a social theory premising and emphasizing the difference between the socially strong and able from the weak and poor. It clarifies a type of society where individuals with power and influence make all the necessary and essential decisions rather than the general majority who are actually directly related to implementing these decisions. Often capitalism and other social theories such as socialism and communism are fundamentally based on an individual’s social class. Johnson (2018) clarifies that one’s social class dictates ones social life and thereby determine the virtual position or ranks of an individual within the society which subsequently cultivates their individual identity and determines whether they are socially weak or strong and thus their impact to the society. Capitalism in economic terms as highlighted by Kelly (2018) refers to a system in which a country’s trade, industry and profits are controlled by private companies (the strong and able) rather than by the people whose time and labor powers the said companies.

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Late capitalism on the other hand refers to the political and economic activities that describe post World War II capitalism. According to Matt (2018), in the modern context, late capitalism is used to describe gross wealth and income inequality between the rich and the poor individuals within the global world. In essence late capitalism emphasizes the gap between the rich and the poor in the society and grants the rich much more power to make decisions on the economic and social variables that collectively impact the human life. Apple (2002) and Nealon (2012) further highlights that late capitalism is synonymous to post modernism which cropped up in the 1950s after the wartime shortages of consumer goods and spare parts that had been made up so that new products and new technologies could be pioneered as well as the psychic break that made possible the cultural emergence of late capitalist sensibilities in the 1960s. In general David (2014) puts out that late capitalism refers to the pervasive condition of the current age, a condition that highlights both economic and cultural structures of the society.

Elements of Late Capitalism

Late capitalism conveys the sense of change and the idea that the society has gone through a transformation in their way of life in a decisive way but incomparable to the older convolutions of modernization and industrialization. Nealon (2012) further emphasizes that changes in the late capitalism are less perceptible and bare new elements t include: New forms of businesses organizations in transnational and multinational companies extending the capitalist concept of monopolies beyond national boundaries. Internationalization of businesses presenting a new order of capital where multinational companies are not tied to any one country globally but collectively represent a form of power and influence that is greater than one country. This internationalization of business however stretches and applies to the employee welfare and division of labor which makes it possible for the continued exploitation of laborers from poor countries in support for multinational capital.

Another element of the late capitalism include a vertiginous new dynamic in international banking, which allows the world different countries to secure loans and funds from the world bank and other international financial institutions thereby enabling the multinational corporations to continue maintaining their control and influence over the world market for their own benefits (Kumar, 2009; Nealon, 2012). New forms of media interrelationships in the internet, television and film impact capitalist take over’s providing a narrative that is predominantly filled with capitalist values and structures and that the general population becomes quite reliant on thereby impacting their individual identities. Late capitalist society in addition involves computers and automation which allows for unprecedented level of mass production which multiply the growing profit margins of capitalists and multinational companies.

Late capitalism has significantly changed the lives of individuals especially in the post modernism error with the development and enhancement of technology that enables easier and widespread information sources. As a result, there has been an interlocking of cultural values all across the world due to globalization which has further impacted the development of individual identities in the current age. Jameson (1991) argues that the globalized post industrial world has given rise to post modernist art and culture which influence and shape individual social status and character. He outlines that some of the aspects of late capitalism include the commoditization of everything and the collapse of the high and low cultures which led to a more self referential and superficial art. This greatly and directly impact individual behavior and livelihoods which intern impact on their identities (Lowrey, 2017).

Characteristics of Late capitalism

Amadeo (2018) points out that at the core of it; late capitalism illustrates the unrealistic perspective of the wealthy and the level of oblivion that the middle class exhibit to the struggles of the poor within a society. In essence therefore the system already presets an individual to live and lead a particular kind of life which eventually is a key determinant in their created identities and social classes. Late capitalism also advances according to the general population that the monopolies and oligarchs have effectively rigged the system in their favor through hiring well paid lobbyists to effectively influence politicians into falling in line therefore allowing expenditure of billions of dollars for political agendas that personally benefit the rich businesses. Capitalists have fewer competitors and are capable of rigging systems to their favors as well as creating barriers to entry by other businesses which fosters inequality and ensures their continued benefit at the expenses of the middle and low class who actually provide the labor and are directly involved with the activities that the rich make decisions over.

Impact of the Late Capitalism

According to Kelly (2018) the impact of capitalism on an individual is dependent on whether they are a worker or a boss. In the context of owning a company, an individual will be positively impacted by late capitalism in line with the laws of supply and demand. The more profits a company brings in the more resources available for the company owner to share with his employees who eventually, on a theoretical perspective should be able to improve everyone’s standards of living and impact on their identities. However the concept of capitalism takes the position that greed is good and as such many capitalist bosses do not share their wealth equally with their employees but rather subscribe to the idea that greed drives massive increase in profits which in turn impact innovation and product development. The late capitalism according to Amadeo (2018) therefore points out that more choices and opportunities of gaining wealth and improving standards of living are available for those who can afford it and limited to the poor.

Late capitalism and its impact on Identity

Ultimately capitalism premises the transformation of objects ideas and literally every aspect of the society and economy into commodities that can be traded in the market. Bronner (2010) highlights therefore that the commodity becomes not just a subject for business, production and consumption interactions, but also for social interactions between different individuals in the society regardless of the social status. With previously non commercialized activities like art and religion becoming secondary to these commodities due to the financial value attached to them and thus their capacity of impact in the economy and the society, individual development of identity and behavior is equality compromised by the highly economized status quo. As such post capitalism has radically impacted the change in and cultivation of new identities for individuals all across the globe.

Chaput (2010) points out that late capitalism includes more than merely a struggle between the rich and poor as well as other social classes within the society, he highlights that it involves a possible change in the historical trajectory of a population values, beliefs, behaviors and habits that are influenced by science, bureaucracy, division of labor and standardization all of which are components of the modernized society and expose the worlds scarcity of resources in a realm of necessity. This fundamentally programs individuals into social states and classes where they can survive and make maximum acquisitions in terms of profits and added assets for businesses which impacts on their eventual identities in the social scale of the post modern society. A common factor to all these as highlighted by Bronner (2010) is the elimination of subjectivity and ethical qualities such as solidarity and loyalty in favor of objective commitment that contribute towards capitalists production processes. In this context personal values, ideological differences as well as identities are abandoned and their value is lost thereby encouraging and necessitating the cultivation and development new individual identities, values and beliefs that are inconsistent with socialism and communism.

Late capitalism further with the incorporation of new technology turns quantity to quality and low and middle class workers are increasingly treated as objects rather than persons due to the division and specialization of labor. They become a cost of production in the pursuit of profits which makes them vulnerable to being cut off at any time thereby favoring alienation and impacting the modification of identities among individuals for impacting survival. According to Moran (2015), personal identity only emerged with the explosion of consumption in the twentieth century; she premises that the emergence of identity politics and social movements in the late capitalist societies of the 1960s and 1970s framed the existence of social and political identities as presently known. As such late capitalism not only encourages the cultivation and development of individual identities but also impacts on the type of identities developed by individuals.

Impact of the Media

Emergence and development of the internet and internet related technologies has introduced a wide variety of media outlets that have significantly impacted the development of the late capitalism and enhanced the development and cultivation of different social and political identities for different individuals based on their social class within the society. The media has had both negative and positive impacts in the late capitalism regarding the development of identities and the commoditization of all everything enabling the access of direct markets and easier marketing channels and routes which have further enhanced the development of the inequality and gap between the rich and poor within the society.

Post modernism and late capitalism began and are routed in the pinnacle of mass media as a cultural influence (Nealon, 2012; Lash, 2014). Despite the availability of media outlets such as the television, telephone and newspapers in the capitalism period, prior to the late capitalism, these outlets were not much utilized in being able to facilitate any activities related to the society or economy and as such they did not have much of an influence in the society, this means that they were incapable of influencing individuals at the time however , the late capitalism aligned with liberal tradition of independence of press ownership as well as the freedom of the press, the media plays a major role in shaping individual opinions and impacting behavior and identity (Thomson, 1971).

Mirrless (2009) comments that the media represents one of the key areas in the society where power is exercised, reinforced and contested among political as well as economical heavy weights of the late capitalism period, signifying it as a huge potential in being able to impact not only consumer behavior but also employee as well as the bosses behavior and indulgences. In the earlier periods of capitalism the media was not quite extensive and capable of spreading information over a wide area as such: socialist wouldn’t critic any media outlet as there was not so many people who actually subscribed to any particular media platform. The media as such was not an influential tool. However currently the media is a commonly used tool in the management of individual perspectives and perceptions and as such a key tool in the advancement of capitalism agendas to ensure the rich maintain their status of power and influence over the poor and the middle class workers.

Amin (2014) highlighted premises that among the major elements of the late capitalism include new forms of interrelationships that are advanced by the revolutionized media outlets available in the current age of globalization. He advances that the media including: print media, the internet, television as well as film and radio and other media outlets such as social networks represent one of the more influential new products of the late capitalism and thus a new means of enhancing the capitalist advantage over the poor and further influencing them into acceptance of the social situation. The mediatization of various aspects of the society including the economy, culture, art and many others enhance the increased reliance of the general public on the media version of reality which is filled with predominantly capitalist ideas and values thereby influencing the public to acceptance.

Eventually the biggest media houses which are also owned by the very capitalists broadcast capitalistic agendas in a large scale making it the acceptable status quo and the gospel truth to the majority general population that consist of poor individuals and middle class as well as low class employees. The media thus impact in the further acceptance and shaping of individual identity based on capitalistic ideas and agendas advanced through the popular media sites.

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Conclusion

The late capitalism generally highlights the social evil of equality that exist between the insanely rich in the society considered to be no more than 1% of the entire global population and the rest of the population which either falls under the middle or low class individuals. With the greedy perception and perspective of the capitalists, profits gained from big multinational companies are not equally divide to the employees and workers who actually make it possible through their physical and direct involvement in the production processes of these companies, rather, they are with held by the capitalist so as to enhance their power and positions of influence within the society and in the economy.

As a result individuals in the late capitalist age are forced to accept the economical and social conditions of the society and adjust themselves to be able to survive and be sustainable in it. This impacts cultivation and development of individual identities by different individuals in different social classes. With the rapid increase of multinational companies and the interchanging of cultural diversities as well as art and religious practices, no single identity is adhered to anymore by any social group; instead individuals cultivate and formulate their own identities based on the various factors such as the popular perceptions and perspectives. The media is a crucial element in disseminating these various perspectives and perceptions and eventually getting individuals to rely and believe on the broadcasted agendas by the capitalists which contain capitalistic agendas. Eventually the media is a tool that has greatly enhanced the advancement of the capitalistic agendas all across the globe.

References

  • Amadeo, K. (2018). What Is Late Stage Capitalism and Why Is It Trending Today? [online] The Balance. Available at: [Accessed 7 Jan. 2019].
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  • Apple, M.W., 2002. Marxism against postmodernism in educational theory. Lexington Books.
  • Bronner, S. (2010). Capitalism, Identity, and Social Rights - Logos Journal. [online] Logosjournal.com. Available at:
  • Bronner, S. (2010). Capitalism, Identity, and Social Rights - Logos Journal. [online] Logosjournal.com. Available at:
  • Chaput, C., 2010. Rhetorical circulation in late capitalism: Neoliberalism and the overdetermination of affective energy. Philosophy & rhetoric, 43(1), pp.1-25.
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  • Kelly, K. (2018). Everything You Need to Know About Capitalism. [online] Teen Vogue. Available at:
  • Kumar, K., 2009. From post-industrial to post-modern society: New theories of the contemporary world. John Wiley & Sons.
  • Lash, S., 2014. Sociology of postmodernism. Routledge.
  • Lowrey, A. (2017). Why the Phrase 'Late Capitalism' Is Suddenly Everywhere. [online] The Atlantic. Available at:
  • Matt (2019). Late Capitalism. [online] Know Your Meme. Available at:
  • Mirrlees, T. (2009). Media Capitalism, the State and 21st Century Media Democracy Struggles - An interview with Robert McChesney - The Bullet. [online] Socialist Project. Available at: 2019].
  • Moran M. (2015). Identity and Capitalism. Research Gate
  • Nealon, J., 2012. Post-postmodernism: or, the cultural logic of just-in-time capitalism. Stanford University Press.
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