Karl Marx was a German philosopher, currently known for such works as Das Kapital and The Communist Manifesto. During his lifetime, he was not that popular among his contemporaries, however, later, he gathered a large number of followers. In the latter work, Marx criticizes the current system and current ruling class. In the following text, I will review one of the passages from The Communist Manifesto.
In the first chapter, where Marx depicts the differences between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat and how their lives are affected by the domination of the former as a ruling class. In one of the paragraphs, he states how the use of machinery and the classification of labor deprives the work of the proletarians of its individuality and appealing features. The philosopher then emphasizes the severity of the situation by stating that the member of the working class becomes a part of one complicated system, while being defined solely by it and confining them to the equality of the cost of production and commodity (Jacobus, 2017). The paragraph is concluded by describing the further deterioration of the proletariat’s working conditions.
In a way, with this statement, the philosopher implies that in capitalism (which is then stated explicitly in other paragraphs) turns the worker into a slave. Obviously, this opinion suggests that the person will then be deprived of the required number of means to survival (Jacobus, 2017). This position attempts to strengthen itself by claiming that with the further classification of labor and more frequent use of machinery, the working conditions may then become more unjust and inhumane.
However, this perspective is rather inaccurate due to a couple of reasons: personal bias and pessimism. Marx seems rather biased towards his perspective of what is right. This, in a way, makes him reminiscent of the very people he criticizes in his manifesto. The second reason is intertwined with the first, as Marx believes that if his viewpoint is not supported, disaster will follow. Certainly, no one can predict the future, though, as time progressed, more emphasis was later placed on human rights as a result of activism. This statement by no means implies that the required progress has already been made. Nonetheless, it should be achieved with a more emotionally neutral perspective. That way, the problem that Marx depicts in this passage, can find a better solution.
Jacobus, L. A. (2017). A world of ideas: Essential readings for college writers (10th ed.). Bedford/St Martin’s.