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The Dynamics of Marxism

Human relationships have always been dynamic. Change and adaptability have gone hand in hand with the passing of time for human society. Karl Marx’s views on Industrialization and the bourgeoisie had a major impact on how we view our industrial alignment today. Marx and Engel’s The Communist Manifesto gives broad views on the subject of the middle class and how they fit into a society that was ruled by feudalism and aristocracy. Capitalism becomes a major topic in a socialist-based society that underwent many changes as industrialization progressed. A government must be dynamic in its nature reflecting the change in society. At times aristocracy has refused to allow society to adapt to the changes that the bourgeoisie have gone through. Charles Dickens’ “Hard Times” offers a distinct view of the conditions of middle-class worker during this period of change. Revolution of the working man is discussed and many principles are brought out to dictate the way that many of these workers were treated during this time.

Karl Marx’s theory of economic evolution addresses some of these points that are brought out in “Hard Times.” Marxism and economic theory of Marxism was formulated in the 19th century.
Karl Marx is said to be the greatest thinker and philosopher of his time. His views on life and the social structure of his time revolutionized the way in that people think of socialism. He created an opportunity for the lower class to rise above the aristocrats, but failed due to the creation of the middle class. Despite this failure, he was still a great political leader and set the basis of Communism in Russia. His life contributed to the way people think today, and because of him people are more open to suggestion and are quicker to create ideas on political issues. Marx is unique from other philosophers in that he chooses to regard man as a human being, not a piece of meat. He believed that a man’s struggle comes from man’s awareness of himself as an individual and as something separate from nature.

He sees that history is just the story of man creating and re-creating himself, and that a “god” has no part in it. This is a major reason why he left his Christian background behind and converted to Communism. Marx also says that the more a man works, the less he has for himself. These views support his arguments against the industrial revolution that occurred in England. Private property becomes a product and cause of unfair treatment to the working man and he believed that was what cause conflict between the bourgeoisie and the aristocrats.
Regarding Marx’s attitude toward religion, he thought that it was simply in the man’s conscious to worship a god. To Marx, the only reason a man would worship a god would be because society tells them that they are supposed to. The same could be said about some people who live in our society today.

Our world tells us that we are supposed to worship a god, even though there are still people who choose not to. Though Marx celebrated Christian views at a younger age, he belief in a god diminished as he got older and started his work as a radical philosopher. Marx sums it all up in a famous quote, stating that religion is “an opium for the people.” With
Karl Marx observed the socio-economic changes that were occurring in Britain. England was a dominant world power and also had the largest industrialized economy during the 1800’s. This was the main vocal point of Dickens’ “Hard Times.” The development of the factory created a large demand for workers. As industrialization evolved by using industry as the economic backbone for population, a large number of factory workers were hired to operate the machinery in these thought-to-be “hard” conditions. These workers, who were deemed peasants, were now considered to be the working class. They entered the cities with hopes of living better lives and hoped to be able to support their families. Though revolution never took place in England, it allowed Marx to compile his own views of what was really going on at this point in history.

Marxism contains three simple principles that were used by his followers during the 1800s: historic materialism, forces of production, and relations of production. Historic materialism refers to a society’s present ability to satisfy the needs of an economy’s workers, as well as how well it has done this in the past. The essential elements of food, clothing, and shelter must be met in order to continue to have a working class to make industrialization continue to prosper. The forces of production that control the society are very important and it is also very important that the society protects the working class that sets the cycle of production into motion. According to Marx, the working class, not the aristocrats control the fate of an industrialized economy.

The last principle of Marxism, the relations of production, deals with the relationships between the three classes of people: the aristocrats, the middle class, and the working class. Marxism includes analysis of socio-economic structures. Using history, logic and the dynamic nature of humankind as guidelines, Karl Marx attempts to map out a sequence of events, which will eventually lead better conditions for the working and middle class. In order for an economic society to evolve, there must be a shift from a system of feudalism to capitalism. This shift would put the economy back into the hands of the middle and working classes and this would mean that the wealth inside the economy would be more spread out and geared towards working families. The landlords began to fence their property in the common land areas.

The socio-economic system that the working and middle classes had to endure during this stretch of history put them into the cellar of the economy. Aristocrats ruled virtually all of the wealth that the society had to offer. The main goal for Marx and his followers were to squeeze as much money from the economy as they could to create a capitalist-based society where everyone, including the working class, could prosper financially. “The purpose of capitalist production is not consumption, but the appropriation of profit and the accumulation of capital (Clarke 93).” Dickens shares these same views in “Hard Times” where he tells a story of a struggling family living in the horrid conditions of industrialized England. It was not uncommon for a family to not have all of the essentials that they needed to live and enjoy their life during this time. These types of families would be considered to be homeless by the social standards that we use today.

During the time period of the 16th and 17th centuries, England’s economic base began a gradual decline. The monarchy favored a monopoly market system over a competitive one. The purpose for this position was for taxation and control of the profits. As the cities began to be heavily populated with merchants, it began conflicting with economic growth. This created instability in three areas. First, the English monarchy needed money to support its army, which insured its safety from its enemies. The second area was the restraints that were imposed on the middle-class. Thirdly, the rise of the bourgeoisie created competition for the monopolies, which created a reduction in profit. These three factors stemmed the economic conflict that would eventually lead to the uprising of the bourgeoisie. Landowners also played a major part in the decline of the English economy. Landowners had support from the farmers who resided on their land. The group that was mainly affected by movement was the merchants. These merchants, or Marxism rising bourgeoisie, were the unfortunate targets of the restrictions that were brought upon landowners. The rising English Bourgeoisie used the land to satisfy their needs for resources that was needed for them to continue living. These regulations on property rights helped spring the addition of a new industrial economy.

The Communist Manifesto was a book written by Marx with collaboration from Engles. This means that Marx wrote it but he discussed the issues in the manifesto with Engles. Its documents the objectives and principals of the Communist League, an organization of artists and intellectuals. It was published in London in 1848, shortly before the revolution in Paris. The manifesto is divided into four parts, which contain radical views about the views of a new capitalist economy. The first part outlines his ideas on history and a prediction on what is yet to come. Joshua Muravchic, from Foreign Policy states that “He and Marx, a pair of 20-something children of privilege, believed they had discovered a pattern to history that would produce socialism regardless of human will or ingenuity (Muravchic 36).”He predicts a confrontation between the all of the classes that existed during the socio-economic revolution. Because of the main logic behind capitalism, Marx believed that the bourgeoisie would seek more power and more wealth. With them doing this, the living conditions of the aristocrats would decrease. He also believed that many of the aristocrats would increase their political awareness and will revolt against the bourgeoisie and would eventually have their victory. In the second part, Marx discusses the importance of Communism. He believed that if private property were to be abolished, class distinctions would be as well. The second part also stresses the importance of the aristocrats and bourgeoisie being put into the same class rank in order for society to prosper the way it should.

The third part critiques other social ideas of an unstable economy, which does not pertain as much to the important issues that he believed held a society together as they should. The fourth part discussed the differences between his political issues as opposed to those of the other parties. This part ends with this statement: “Working me of all countries, unite (Progress and Resistance 198a)!” The Communist Manifesto applied the term communism to society where he thought all class structure would disappear. He declared that economic stability would only come when opposing forces became one. These forces were rooted in the economic system that was divided private property ownership. His main belief was that the struggle between the bourgeoisie and the aristocrats would end when the socialists started a revolution and adopted a Communist government.

There is no single theory to explain the relevance present in revolution. However, the application of a select number or combination of theoretical approaches, helps to establish a proper framework for Marx’s analysis of revolutions. Despite all of the groundbreaking research and theorizing being done on revolution, it still remains a phenomenon and can not be predicted. Karl Marx revolutionized a nation with his in-depth analysis of a society that was having industrial success, but being torn apart socially at the same time. He did not want industrialization to go he wanted the socialist to wise up with their thinking.

His impact on England shows, but he also had impact on other countries. His views carried over into other powerful countries such as the Soviet Union and China. If it were not for Marx, the then Soviet Union and China would not be the same as they are today. They would positively be operating through a different government today. Karl Marx is considered to be a revolutionist of England and the father of Communism. Some may question his views and possibly his religious beliefs, but he can still be labeled a revolutionist. “In these troubled times, to believe in the possibility of helping to make the world a better place, and to commit ones life to that, makes one a revolutionary (Le Blanc 44).” Karl Marx exemplifies many of the qualities that we have found in many revolutionists that have changed the world that we live in today. His views are still cherished by many European minds and taken heed when creating structure in society.

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