The Communist Manifesto Analysis Essay Example
In 1848, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels published their pamphlet “The Communist Manifesto.” This came to be known as one of the most influential pieces ever written and encouraged great change within Europe during a time of political unrest. In the manifesto, they outline the problems with the current society and how they believe that a revolution towards communism is inevitable.
They begin by briefly explaining how throughout all of history, there has been an oppressor and those being oppressed. From the slave and his owner, to the Lord of the land and their serf, this has been happ[enig for centuries. They elucidate on the fact that social classes have always been around and those even from the far past have led to the Bourgeoisie of their time. The Bourgeoisie were the rich and wealthy people with the power. Their counterparts, the Proletariats, were forced to work under them for little to no pay and in horrible conditions. They were just those who worked to manufacture merchandise and bring in money and capital to those on top. Marx and Engles recount how those who work were divided by a larger guilds of people, but now with new technological advancements, they are divided by each workplace and shop. Each manufacturer is forced to compete with all others to make enough money to be able to support themselves and their families.
Next, Engles and Marx state that the Bourgeoisie have always taken the role of the leader. They have made it to where there are no relations between humans other than those that deal with money or items. The rich and powerful have used the names of religion and politics to do what they want and get away with it. They have also made it to where workers do not have their own person. They no longer add personal flare to their craft, but just work in factories and mass produce the same merchandise as everyone else. The products that the Proletariats make are sold around the world and are used to make connections between the rich of other nations. The fast production of things people need, leads them to want things. These things need to be created, starting the cycle of workers being oppressed again.
Another crime of the Bourgeoisie is that they have made it to where only the top have real property. Only the rich can afford their own land, nice houses, or even the factories where everyone works. Their own selfishness may be the cause of their downfall. They have created too much to control and with revolutions spreading world-wide, they might be defeated. All of their creations have caused more materials to be needed and more places and people to be extended. Instead of dealing with these problems they have created, the Bourgeoisie either destroy what they have made, or try to spread to a new marketable area. Another side effect of their selfishness is that they have more Proletariats working for them, and in turn, more thinking about revolution. If all of the Proletariats were to come together, they would be very powerful. Not only because of the sheer outnumbering, but because they are more united. They all face the common issue of oppression from the Bourgeoisie.
Even though there are fewer of them and they are seen as almost equals amongst themselves, the Bourgeoisie fight with each other. They all want to spread their connections and sell more than the other, causing competition between themselves. Not only does this weaken their unity, this helps educate the Proletariats. They see the weaknesses of the Bourgeoisie and that can teach them what to aim at to start the change. Also, the Bourgeoisie have created the army that will fight against them themselves. They called for the swords and weaponry to be built so it is their fault that the Proletariats are so ready and eager to fight.
The way that society is going now, there is not a way to solve its issues without completely eradicating what there is now. The Bourgeoisie will not give up their power and the Proletariats will not continue to be exploited. The Bourgeoisie caused this problem and they will have to face the consequences of it. This is how chapter one of the manifesto ended.
The next chapter begins explaining what the Communist party wants. Marx and Engles inform that they want unity for the Proletariats. They want them all to be unified with common interests and levels of development against the Bourgeoisie. The Communists wish to help the Proletariats overthrow the Bourgeoisie. Engles and Marx go on to explain that in past revolutions or times of major change that the ownership of certain properties were abolished. The Communists don’t want to end property, but the personal ownership and monopoly on it that the Bourgeoisie has.
They worry that people will think they want nobody to have anything, but they clear up their intentions. They state that the Proletariats don’t truly have their own property now and if they do, then it is being taken advantage of by the Bourgeoisie. The Communists want to rid the Bourgeoisie of their ownership of almost everything and spread it to all of the people, not just the rich or powerful. Marx and Engles reveal that the Proletariats work to earn money or land, but all they are doing is creating more capital for the Bourgeoisie. The Communists wish that this capital not be returned to the Bourgeoisie, but it eventually be open to all, destroying the class system. They believe that minimum wage is just enough for the average Proletariat to get by, and that they want it to be a way to encourage workers.
Another large change that the Communists are pushing for is a change within families. As they see it, currently the Bourgeoisie only see their wives as a means of production. They are not their for love or companionship, but to carry on the legacy. In addition, they do not even stay loyal to their wives. Even worse is the fact that when committing adultery, the Bourgeoisie would rather try to seduce the wives of others instead of going to prostitutes. Also, in all families, the children are extorted for the parents benefits. Even the education that the children receive is based on the hierarchy. The level of education a child can receive is based on the social status of their family. This should not be the case, and the Communist want to change it.
Next, Engles and Marx try to disprove the blows towards Communism saying that they do not even need to be looked at or considered. They compare Communism to Christianity saying that when the religion was first being spread, it was fought against also. They repeat their stance on the abolition of the poors property that doesn’t even really exist. Also, they explain that some things have to be forgotten when major changes take place. It has happened for centuries when revolutions or rebellions take place and it will have to happen now.
To finish off the second chapter, Marx and Engles reiterate that with the way society is going now, it must undergo a complete change. The Proletariats must join together to take the power from the Bourgeoisie. They also state a list of ten of the major things that they think belong in the most advanced countries. These are: no personal land property, a high tax, abolition on inheritance, harder rules on emigrant and rebels, a national bank or controlling financial power, controlled transport by the State, changing of factories and lands, labor equality, a joining together of industry and agriculture, and free education for all children that now will not have to work in the factories. To summarize the goal of the Communist Party, there will be no personal property and people will be seen as equals.
In 1883, a release of the manifesto was made in Germany with the addition of a Preface written by Engles. This preface tells that Marx has died and was buried at Highgate Cemetery. It also restates the meaning of Proletariat and Bourgeoisie. It also states that society must undergo a complete change for any improvement to be made.
In conclusion, the Communist Manifesto written by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engles outlines the issues that the current society faces. It also explains what the Communist party wants to do to change and fix these issues. This was a popular piece among workers because it appealed to their sense that they were being oppressed and wanted a way out. This work went on to become known as one of the most influential pieces of text ever written and continues to be relevant in our world today.