Communist Manifesto, Day 1

page 1189Marx begins his discussion of the various classes. According to Marx is it possible for someone to improve their position in society? For example, could a member of the working class one day become an officer? If they can improve their status, how do they go about doing this?
section IIHow does Karl Marx defend the idea of getting rid of private property when that is many peoples motivation. How can he think that we would have the innovation that we do today if people were not given rewards for going that one step farther. If they do not recieve private property they dont have that one thing that they can say the worked to get.
Sec 1. "The bourgeoisie, historically, has played a most revolutionary part" pg 1186Marx makes the claim that all revolutions have been devised by the bourgeoisie in order for their class to expand their markets and amass more wealth. Do you think Marx makes a valid point? Why or why not? Where do you think Marx's view of revolutions being a means to an end for an advancement of a class would be accepted? Where do you think it would be ignored or dismissed? Does Marx's view of history have any weight or is it purely a biased account?
Section I. of Communist Manifesto

"It has resolved personal worth into exchange value, and in place of the numberless indefeasible chartered freedoms, has set up that single, unconscionable freedom - Free Trade." (Pg. 1187)

"The lower strata of the middle class - the small tradespeople, shopkeepers, and retired tradesmen generally - all these sink gradually into the proletariat, partly because their diminutive capital does not suffice for the scale on which Modern Industry is carried on, and is swamped in the competition with the large capitalists, partly because their specialized skill is rendered worthless by new methods of production. Thus, the proletariat is recruited from all classes of the population." (Pg. 1189)
In the Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx describes that a Communist revolution is only possible through a Capitalist society. Does this mean that it is possible for the United States to go through a Communist revolution if aspects get that bad?

The first passage above describes that individual worth is only as much as what one makes (materialistic society). That can be very true of the United States. Also, relating to the second passage, in the past years, income disparities have increased immensely. Income increases have been especially prominent in people like CEOs (a person of the bourgeoisie in Marx's opinion). Could the fact that the "We are the 99%" movement be the beginning of a class revolution that Marx is talking about? Could it be considered a modern version?
"And here it becomes evident, that the bourgeoisie is unfit any longer to be the ruling class in society, and to impose its conditions of existence upon society as an over-riding law...Society can no longer live under this bourgeoisie, in other words, its existence is no longer compatible with society." (page 1191)Compare Marx's bourgeoisie to Rousseau's sovereign. How do their ideals contrast?

Discussion questions

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