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 (lŭm′pən-prō′lĭ-târ′ē-ət, lo͝om′-)
1. The lowest stratum of the proletariat. Used originally in Marxist theory to describe those members of the proletariat, especially criminals, vagrants, and the unemployed, who lacked awareness of their collective interest as an oppressed class.
2. An underclass.

[German : Lumpen, pl. of Lump, ragamuffin (from Middle High German lumpe, rag) + Proletariat, proletariat (from French prolétariat; see proletariat).]


(Sociology) (esp in Marxist theory) the amorphous urban social group below the proletariat, consisting of criminals, tramps, etc
[German, literally: ragged proletariat]


(ˈlʌm pənˌproʊ lɪˈtɛər i ət, ˈlʊm-)

(esp. in Marxist theory) the lowest level of the proletariat comprising unskilled workers, vagrants, and criminals and characterized by a lack of class consciousness.
[1920–25; < German (Marx, 1850) =Lumpen rag or Lumpen-, comb. form of Lump ragamuffin + Proletariat proletariat]


The lowest level of the proletariat, made up of criminals, vagrants, and the permanently unemployed.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.lumpenproletariat - (Marxism) the unorganized lower levels of the proletariat who are not interested in revolutionary advancement
Marxism - the economic and political theories of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels that hold that human actions and institutions are economically determined and that class struggle is needed to create historical change and that capitalism will ultimately be superseded by communism
labor, labour, proletariat, working class - a social class comprising those who do manual labor or work for wages; "there is a shortage of skilled labor in this field"


A group of persons regarded as the lowest class:
dreg (often used in plural), rabble, ragtag and bobtail, riffraff, trash.
Slang: scum.
Idioms: scum of the earth, tag and rag, the great unwashed.
References in periodicals archive ?
The latter one is the lumpenproletariat which is a class of the lowest social standing made up of ''declassed people, living unstable lives in penury and holding unspecified, odd jobs'' [7].
Ragged Revolutionaries: The Lumpenproletariat and African American Marxism in Depression-Era Literature.
Eugenic logic inspired the first minimum wage laws--the idea being that employers would invariably prefer the genetically superior to the lumpenproletariat.
The havenots versus the haves, or as one contributor puts it, 'the proletariat (that's Villa) against the lumpenproletariat.
47) It is no coincidence that the principal social base for anarchism in Russia consisted of a mix of factory workers, members of the Lumpenproletariat, vagrants, the unemployed, and underage youth.
79) He explains that much of it emanated from what might be understood as the lumpenproletariat class of Galicians, specifically two groups called "the Jacks" ("dzheky") and "the Bulls" ("buhai") prevalent in Alberta until the 1930s.
Hence, his chastisement of Muslims for becoming race-conscious and race-oriented; his exhortation for the building up of a single millat or ummah, to a point that the Lumpenproletariat could get transformed into a critical mass.
She eventually reunites with Fritz, and they attend the workers' competitions, whose collective militancy acts as an alternative to the previous lumpenproletariat reality of their familial environment.
that] balked at the rule of the working proletariat, so it brought the lumpenproletariat to power, making the chief of the Society of 10 December its head" (95).
Unlike most liberal theorists, Brown does not believe this present-oriented, lumpenproletariat culture generates political passivity; "the vato loco," he reflects, "has been fighting with the pig since the Anglos stole his land in the last century" (91).
As early as the 1920s, political philosopher Antonio Gramsci had recognized that the Southern Question laid bare that the exploitation of the sub- or lumpenproletariat (for Gramsci, the southern peasantry) was part-and-parcel of Italy's awkward climb toward modern, democratic nation-statehood.