From a sociological perspective, the word capital has its origins as an analytical concept in the work of Karl Marx (1867). For Marx, capital is the sum of resources that a person has access to and is seen predominantly in financial terms (although Marx is very clear that this leads to power ). The key distinction for Marx was between those whose control of capital enabled them to require others to work for them, the capitalists (or bourgeoisie), and those who needed to work for them because they had no other access to resources—the workers (or proletariat).