Friday, February 24, 2006

Re-reading The Communist Manifesto

The Meat Eating Leftist re-reads The Communist Manifesto on the 158th anniversary of the publication of the little book and notes the sense of immediacy and urgency with which the young Marx and Engels wrote the manifesto- an urgency and hope that remain belied.

A nostalgic post with some memorable quotes from the book- indeed Marx never ceases to surprise us even after one and a half century. See this quote for example:
The bourgeoisie, by the rapid improvement of all instruments of production, by the immensely facilitated means of communication, draws all, even the most barbarian, nations into civilisation... It compels all nations, on pain of extinction, to adopt the bourgeois mode of production; it compels them to introduce what it calls civilisation into their midst, i.e., to become bourgeois themselves. In one word, it creates a world after its own image.
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2 comments:

ReasonInRevolt said...

Both quite accurate and inspiring to this very day. You have to wonder whether the power elite has the Manifesto and Das Kapital as required reading in prep-school.

bhupinder singh said...

Thanks for your comment. I first read Marx when I was 15 and still I cannot get over him. At every historical juncture, he seems to have "been there, seen it all". The range of his vision is mesmerizing and you are absolutely correct- his ideas have been (selectively) appropriated in the dominant discourse, especially aspects of his economic determinism ("globalization is inevitable"), even as his name is sought to be equated with everything that went wrong in the 20th century.