Author(s): Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels
- Karl Marx (1818- 1883) was a prominent German philosopher whose ideas on economics, labor, and classism have and continue to influence nations worldwide.
- Friedrich Engels (1820-1895) was also an important German philosopher who shared views and co-authored with Marx.
- laid out the aims and ideals of the Communist party
- this manifesto was written after much of Europe had recognized communism as a threat to current powers
- Communists from several nations worked together to draft the manifesto to replace “the spectre of communism” with a clear representation of the party’s views.
- Although originally written in German, the Manifesto of the Communist Party was published in many languages in order to reach a broad European audience
- English, French, German, Italian, Flemish, and Danish
- Marx writes in a compassionate, but clearly phrased and organized manner. It is clear that this piece was written to address the masses in a language that they could easily understand and rally behind.
- the manifesto is addressed to self-identified communists throughout Europe in order to unify them with a concrete definition of what it means to be in the Communist party
- to combat against hostile views of communism common throughout Europe at the time
- to refute false claims made about the communist party
- to answer to certain objections made about the communist party (ie. there will be no incentive to work in a communist society)
- to distinguish and define communism apart from other political views and past revolutions
- the course of human history to this point has been defined as the struggle between classes. There has always been at least one class dominant over another class(es).
- Communism will end this struggle because it seeks not necessarily to overthrow the bourgeois, but to put an end to all class-based society and instead create a classless society.
Question: How is this concept of Communism initially received, and what factors contribute to this reaction of the public?