Marx, Karl
(1818–1883)
The founder of revolutionary communism. Marx was born in Trier, and studied law at the university of Bonn, then history and philosophy at Berlin. From 1841 he worked on a radical newspaper, the Rheinische Zeitung . In 1843 Marx married and moved to Paris, where he met Engels . His principal work of this time was the text now known as The Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts of 1844, which were published in the 1930s. During the period he was distancing himself from the young Hegelians, and studying the work of the British political economists, Adam Smith, David Ricardo (1772–1823), and James Mill . In the Manuscripts Marx introduces the pivotal concept of alienation, and takes issue with the tradition of political economy that takes inequality as a natural fact, failing to understand its social creation. The Theses on Feuerbach (written 1845) and The German Ideology (1846) begin Marx's concern with the different forms of human society, and their evolutionary succession in response to ‘ contradictions ’ or irresoluble tensions between the different classes, or productive forces, in society. In 1848 Marx settled in London, where the most famous of his writings, The Communist Manifesto, was completed. Marx's theoretical account of human society and its economics found its final monument in Capital, whose three volumes appeared in 1867, 1885, and 1893. See also base and superstructure, dialectical materialism, historical materialism, labour theory of value.

Philosophy dictionary. . 2011.

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