Is Capitalism to Blame?

I found it captivating to read The Communist Manifesto Party by Karl Marx and Frederick Engels shortly after discussing Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations. Smith advocated for industrialization and capitalism in his work. He believed that as a states’ wealth and productivity grew, class disparities within that state would decrease. Marx and Engels disagreed with this idea. Wealthier, stronger entities dominated over less developed ones for centuries during the time these authors wrote their works.… Read the rest here

Collectivism: What is the Government’s to take?

With the birth of the Soviet Union and the beginning of communist rule, the new government had to establish socialist norms for those living in the country. The All- Russian Central Executive Committee established these new rules, as on March 21, 1921 the committee addressed NEP in the Countryside, The Tax in Kind. In this document, the committee established collectivism norms for peasants in the form of taxing for the needs of the government and overall Soviet State.… Read the rest here

Propaganda by Rail

While the leaders of the Bolshevik revolution were made up highly educated revolutionaries who trained body and mind to overcome the constraints of the the capitalist bourgeois, most of the population (around ninety percent) was of the peasant class. Most of the peasants in Tsarist Russia were illiterate, uneducated, and knew little of the world outside the villages that dotted the countryside. These villages were scattered over the 6 million square miles of Russia making contact with all of them a challenge.… Read the rest here

Unity of All Laborers: Soviet Ideals in the Wake of Post-February Revolution Independence Movements

 

((Bolsheviks in Moscow. Digital image. The Russian Civil War: 1917-1920. Accessed February 7, 2016. http://www.emersonkent.com/wars_and_battles_in_history/russian_civil_war.htm))

In the U.S., there seems to be a commonly held misconception about the emergence of Soviet Russia and its relationship with its surrounding neighbors. From my history classes, I remember learning about Russia leaving World War I and the basics of the Russian Revolution. However, after that period, it seems that Russian history just disappears until World War II. Suddenly, Russia became our uneasy ally.… Read the rest here

Nehru: Marxism, Capitalism, and Non-Alignment

Author: Jawaharlal Nehru joined the Indian National Congress and Mahatma Gandhi’s independence movement in 1919. After the British withdrew, Nehru became the first prime minister of independent India. In 1928, he became the president of the Indian National Congress. [1]

Context: This period in Indian history was a time of repression by the British government and increasing nationalist activity. Nehru joined the Indian National Congress, one of India’s major two political parties. Mahatma Gandhi was the party leader, and he advocated for change and independence from the British.… Read the rest here

Developing Countries and the Cold War

In “The Superpower Quest for Empire: The Cold War and Soviet Support for ‘Wars of National Liberation'”, Kanet illustrates that the conflict between the Soviet Union and the United States in the Cold War had deep, lasting effects in the developing world, as each superpower attempted to assert its dominance over Third World countries to either lead them on the communist path or away from it. Unlike my previous perceptions of the Cold War, Kanet characterizes much of the Soviet Union’s initiative as resulting from a lack of US response.… Read the rest here

Stalin, Fascists and Freedom

The texts assigned for Friday’s class portray the changing views, which the Soviet Union held towards Germany and other Western nations. While the Hitler-Stalin Pact suggests a mutual understanding between the two leaders (and, by extension, their nations), the later documents paint a far different view of a ‘fascist’ Germany.

In Stalin’s speech in February 1946, he seems to align the Soviet Union with the Western world in a coalition against fascism, and describes the USSR (and other countries involved in the coalition) as freedom-loving.… Read the rest here

Marx’s Manifesto

Author: Karl Marx was a German socialist whose theories about society laid the foundation for Communism. Marx believed that countries progress from a class divided society into a communist one through revolutions.

Context: Marx wrote the Communist Manifesto in 1848, at which point the Industrial Revolution had exploded. Great Britain’s economy was booming, and other countries were starting to see similar advancements. However, the time period was mired by poor working conditions, and a lack of humanitarian care.… Read the rest here

Communist Manifesto-Karl Marx

Author: Karl Marx was 29 when he began writing the Communist Manifesto. He joined the Communist Federation in 1847. He was a leader with great power in the German Communist movement.

Context: Communism destroyed old beliefs, and replaced them with new ideas. Marx is convincing the audience that with Communism comes benefits like an improved economy, further development in railways, navigation and political power. He reminds the poor that if they do not give in they will have to suffer through oppression, higher taxes, and no freedom.… Read the rest here

The Communist Manifesto

Author: Karl Marx and Friedrich Engles.  Marx was a German philosopher, economist, and a revolutionist. Marx published many widely known articles, but some of the most famous include Das Capital, Estranged Labor, and The Manifesto of the Communist Party. Marx worked on a radical newspaper as well, and his ideas remain influential and relevant today. Friedrich Engles assisted with the writing of The Communist Manifesto, and he was a social scientist, philosopher, and political theorist. He was good friends with Marx, and worked with Marx in other writings, such as Das Capital. Read the rest here