Marxism is a philosophical, political and economic doctrine developed by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels in order to transform society and its transition to a higher stage of its development. Marxism is not just an ideology or a peculiar view of the world, it is a whole scientifically grounded doctrine that explains the development of society and the possibility of transition to a new model of social relations - communism. The popularity of this teaching today is very insignificant, but its followers actually predetermined the history of the entire twentieth century. Marxism will be briefly described in this article.
Karl Marx as the founder of the teachings of
The author of the theory that followers will call Marxism was the German journalist, economist and philosopher Karl Heinrich Marx. A public figure was born in the city of Trier in 1818, possessed brilliant abilities for the sciences, and in 1841 graduated from the University of Berlin, so to speak, externally. At the age of 23, he defended hi
Sources of Marxism
Marxism is an integral system of views on all social processes. But this system can be conditionally divided and defined its main components, as well as sources. The well-known Russian revolutionary Marxist VI Lenin in one of his works singled out three sources on which the ideas of Marxism are based.
English Political Economy
Marx's teaching is primarily a theory of economic theory. Therefore, the source of this doctrine is the economic concepts that precede Marxism, among which English political economy. Adam Smith and David Ricard laid the foundation of modern political economy, creating a labor theory of value. The works of the English economists K. Marx took as the basis of his theory.
German classical philosophy
In the idealistic dialectics of George Hegel, Marx saw the basis of his philosophical thinking. But after reading the works of Ludwig Feuerbach, the philosopher begins to understand that the idealistic position is very shaky and even untrue. Marx develops a new method, combining the philosophy of materialism and dialectics. As he himself stated: "We put the dialectics of Hegel from head to foot. ..".
Utopian socialist thought
Long before the emergence of Marxism in Europe, there were many utopian teachings. Their representatives tried to find a way out of the current situation of total social injustice. Among the more prominent Utopian socialists, we can distinguish Robert Owen, Charles Fourier, Henri Saint-Simon and others. Karl Marx critically analyzed their works and brought socialist thought from the stage of utopia to the scientific stage.
Thus, the comprehensive theory has given it tremendous popularity. The development of Marxism was conditioned by a broad working-class movement in the years of the birth of political ideology.
The basic postulates of the theory of Karl Marx
In Marxism it is practically impossible to single out an idea that could be considered the main one. Marxism is a multifaceted, clearly structured doctrine.
All the teachings of Marxism are built on the philosophical position of materialism, the main position of which is to affirm that matter in relation to consciousness is primary. Consciousness is just a property of organized matter to reflect reality. But consciousness as such is not matter, it only reflects it, and also changes it.
Materialistic dialectics views the world around us as a whole, where absolutely all phenomena and objects are interrelated. Everything in this world is constantly in constant movement and change, birth and death.
The theory of Marxism understands by dialectics the general laws and development of nature, human thinking and society.
The three dialectical laws are fundamental for the philosophy of Marxism( dialectical materialism): the unity and struggle of opposites, the transition of quantitative changes to qualitative changes, the negation of negation.
Materialistic Understanding of the History of
Marxism views man not as something separate, but as a social being, as a product of social relations and connections. All kinds of human activity create a man only insofar as he himself creates them.
The principles of historical materialism are as follows:
- the primacy of material life over a cultural life;
- fundamental in any society are precisely the production relations;
- the whole history of human society is the history of the struggle of classes( that is, of certain social groups with others);
- recognition that history is a constantly moving process of changing socio-economic formations( primitive, slave, feudal, capitalist).
In every socio-economic formation there is a class of oppressors and a class of oppressed. These antagonistic classes are defined according to their relation to the means of production( land - under feudalism, factories and factories - under capitalism).Under the capitalist formation, there is a class of the bourgeoisie and a class of wage workers( the proletariat).Classes are in constant struggle, and, as Marx supposed, the proletariat must overthrow the exploiters and establish their dictatorship. As a result, a new fair society and the next social formation - communism - must emerge. It should be noted that Marxism is not always communism, many people use this teaching not for political, but for scientific purposes.
Political economy of Marxism
The political economy of Marxism studies historical, successive ways of social production, or the system of production relations. All the ideas of Marxism and political economy are not an exception, they are based on a dialectical understanding of the nature of society.
The central theme of Karl Marx's criticism of economics was the theme of the capitalist mode of production. This concept and his research, Marx devoted his main work - "Capital."In the work he uncovered the basic laws of the existence of modern society and criticized them as inhuman and exploitative. To challenge this provision of Marx is rather difficult to this day. Many people are forced to work from day to day in order not to die of hunger, while others live with this job, but they themselves practically do not work.
We have considered briefly Marxism, and many of its provisions have been ignored. But it is already quite clear that this is not only an empty and utopian teaching, but an entire scientific method for solving many social contradictions. Marxism is not a dogmatics of Soviet textbooks, it is a living, dynamically developing thought. In the West and in Russia, many intellectuals adhere to the teachings of Karl Marx and his numerous successors.