Karl Marx, philosopher, social scientist, historian and revolutionary, is considered by many as the greatest influential socialist thinker to emerge from the 19th century. He, like many great thinkers before him, was greatly ignored during his lifetime. However, his social, political and economic ideas grew to be accepted in the socialist movement following his death in 1883. Karl Marx’s ideas took root within so many societies around the world. In fact, until recently, close to half of the population of the world lived under regimes that claimed to be Marxist.
Perhaps Marxist’ greatest theory was his materialist conception of history. Shortly after he was expelled from Paris at the end of 1844, he came up with this theory. The basic thesis behind this theory was that “the nature of individuals depends on the material conditions determine their production.” He essentially claimed that all things, including mental aspects and consciousness, “are results of material interactions.” He spent time tracing the history of the many modes of production and predicted the collapse of the industrial capitalism and predicted that it would be replaced by communism. Soon Marx was convinced that “a new revolution is possible only in consequences of a new crisis” and he then went on to devote himself to the study of political economy in order to determine the causes and conditions of this crisis.” Although his theory was widely rejected by other socialists, it eventually turned out to be true. They of course did not note this until after Marx’s death and when it truly took root within various societies around the world.
Karl Marx did not allow the skepticism that was thrown his way to deviate him. He continued to theorize and share his findings with whomever would listen. Karl Marx is an example of many great influencers that did not get their due respect and acknowledgement until after they passed away. However, this did not stop Marx from speaking his mind because he believed in what he was doing. He did not wait for the approval of anyone, but instead focused on sharing his thoughts with the masses; whether they believed his thoughts to be accurate or not. Here are ten quotes by Karl Marx:
“Men make their own history, but they do not make it as they please.” – Karl Marx
“The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it.” – Karl Marx
“History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce.” – Karl Marx
“Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. It is the opium of the people.” – Karl Marx
“There is a specter haunting Europe, the specter of Communism.” – Karl Marx
“The history of all previous societies has been the history of class struggles.” – Karl Marx
“Capital is dead labor, which, vampire-like, lives only by sucking living labor, and lives the more, the more labor it sucks.” – Karl Marx
“Last words are for fools who haven’t said enough.” – Karl Marx
“Workers of the world unite; you have nothing to lose but your chains.” – Karl Marx
“Religion is the opium of the masses.” – Karl Marx
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- LAST, BOB. “Karl Marx.” Critical Quarterly 53.1 (2011): 88-92. Web. 15 Oct. 2017.