INTERPRETATIONS OF THE COMMUNIST MANIFESTO
When philosophers imagine a utopian society based upon their theories it is not as clean and perfect as when a country tries to put it into practice in reality. The same could be said of Karl Marx and the countries that saw his “Communist Manifesto” as a blue print for a better world. After Karl Marx death, there was a split amongst the followers of his theories as to the best way to interpret the execute his manifesto. There were some like Lenin of Russia and Mao of China that were in the revolutionary camp of implementation. Others like German Philosopher Bernstein were revisionists of Marx theories that took a Socialist-democratic approach seen in many European countries that saw a peaceful implementation was the moral way to go.
The contributions of Eduard Bernstein as a member of the German Social Democratic Party helped bring a revised brand of socialism that influenced political parties in many European countries after Marx death. Bernstein’s criticism of Marx socialism as a revolutionary way to get to communism would be brought about by unethical ends (revolution by force).
This more democratic approach thought that democratic support on socialist policies as well as support in the formation of unions was a more ethical means of achieving a socialist society where the common man can benefit. An example or end product of this approach is Sweden. They have socialist benefits without the price of forfeiting democratic principles such as the right to ownership of private property.
KARL MARX: HIS WORKSABSTRACTThis paper will be about the main elements of Karl Marx's work, which includes the Paris Manuscripts, which will focus on alienation. The Communist Manifesto, which will focus on Marx's political and economic theories and Capital Vol. 1. , Marx's final work about how profits are made by the capitalist. Karl Marx was a liberal reformist who believed that capitalism could ...
In the 1917 Bolshevic revolution the start of the Russian communist model began with Lenin taking a Marxist approach. The government followed the Marxist model of invigorating the proletariat to a revolution over the state. Once under communist rule the elements of the old state like the Czarist monarchy and the Russian Orthodox Church became enemies of the new state. Once these rivals were removed they were able to transform into communist state with no private property. Over the years, the rich resources of Russia empowered a big government structure with a focus on a strong military. They became rivals of the west and its capitalist view and preached in there dogma the expansion of communism throughout the world. They supported other new communist regimes like Cuba in the expansion effort and ultimately was facing economic and political failure. Under President Yeltsin the Russians opened up politically in the 1980’s resulting in the break up of the Soviet Bloc and the tear down of the Berlin Wall. Once democracy started to take root and capitalism reentered the economy in desperate need of a boost the country moved away from the traditional Marxist-Communist model. Karl Marx would have thought that the Russian model followed his theory, but he would not have been pleased with the end result of having to revert back to capitalism to avoid bankruptcy.
In the Maoist Chinese model that started much the same as the Russian model following the Russian playbook of a proletariat revolution. They revolted against a Democratic leader Chaing Ki Shek to gain power after generations of monarchy rule before it. The Democratic leader fled to Taiwan and that is why even today they have a difficult relationship with China because they were the opposing party that was in power and the Maoist revolted against. China still holds true to communist principles both politically and economically, however they have made a slight modification in recent years. They allow free trade in China and have allowed limited private ownership of property, but the communist ideas are still in place and are not going away any time soon. Marx would be pleased with many aspects of the Chinese model, but not completely.
The origins of the Russian Revolution can be explained in terms of the peasant consciousness of land which can be traced back to 1861. Russia had been the last country in Europe to abolish serfdom; nevertheless, Alexander II’s emancipation edict of 1861 though earning him the title Czar Liberator, had left peasants feeling cheated. The Russian Revolution of 1905 failed to solve the land issue, ...
So in summary, when the peaceful social-democrat method is used policies are influenced in government; but it will never revert to communism because there will always be an opposing view. So in the Swedish model and other similar European governments there are aspects of socialism that are influenced by Marx, but there is still aspects of capitalism like free markets and private ownership. In the Russian model a communist system was in force, but failed after a few decades. The Russians have reverted back to a more social-democratic model with private property and free market and it is doubtful if they will change economically. In the Chinese model they still practice communism, but they have altered it somewhat to include free trade and some private ownership. In conclusion the reality shows that over time communism does not hold up in its true Marxist form, but requires modification to survive.
Ball, T. &Dagger, R. (2006-sixith edition) Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal Pearson Education, Inc.
Ball, T. &Dagger, R. (2006-sixith edition) Ideals and Ideologies: A Reader Pearson Education, Inc