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The Project Gutenberg EBook of The Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.net Title: The Communist Manifesto Author: Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels Release Date: January 25, 2005 [EBook #61] Language: English *** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK THE COMMUNIST MANIFESTO ***
Transcribed by Allen Lutins with assistance from Jim Tarzia.
MANIFESTO OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY
[From the English edition of 1888, edited by Friedrich Engels] A spectre is haunting Europe—the spectre of Communism. All the Powers of old Europe have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this spectre: Pope and Czar, Metternich and Guizot, French Radicals and German police-spies. Where is the party in opposition that has not been decried as Communistic by its opponents in power? Where is the Opposition that has not hurled back the branding reproach of Communism, against the more advanced opposition parties, as well as against its reactionary adversaries? Two things result from this fact. I. Communism is already acknowledged by all European Powers to be itself a Power. II. It is high time that Communists should openly, in the face of the whole world, publish their views, their aims, their tendencies, and meet this nursery tale of the Spectre of Communism with a
gave to commerce. now hidden. into two great classes. the demand ever rising. a manifold gradation of social rank. and pushed into the background every class handed down from the Middle Ages. trade with the colonies. This market has given an immense development to commerce. Freeman and slave. in almost all of these classes. Italian. a rapid development. I. Modern industry has established the world-market. journeymen. serfs. Our epoch. or in the common ruin of the contending classes. either in a revolutionary reconstitution of society at large. and thereby. BOURGEOIS AND PROLETARIANS The history of all hitherto existing societies is the history of class struggles. From the serfs of the Middle Ages sprang the chartered burghers of the earliest towns. This development has. therefore. under which industrial production was monopolised by closed guilds. however. the colonisation of America. the increase in the means of exchange and in commodities generally. and in proportion as industry. a fight that each time ended. Society as a whole is more and more splitting up into two great hostile camps. this distinctive feature: it has simplified the class antagonisms. the modern bourgeois. The East-Indian and Chinese markets. reacted on the extension of industry.Manifesto of the party itself. The modern bourgeois society that has sprouted from the ruins of feudal society has not done away with class antagonisms. the leaders of whole industrial armies. in its time. plebeians. new forms of struggle in place of the old ones. the epoch of the bourgeoisie. navigation. The guild-masters were pushed on one side by the manufacturing middle class. Thereupon. steam and machinery revolutionised industrial production. now open fight. German. It has but established new classes. lord and serf. now no longer sufficed for the growing wants of the new markets. new conditions of oppression. for which the discovery of America paved the way. Meantime the markets kept ever growing. to be published in the English. again. From these burgesses the first elements of the bourgeoisie were developed. In ancient Rome we have patricians. The discovery of America. Even manufacture no longer sufficed. French. to the revolutionary element in the tottering feudal society. in the Middle Ages. and sketched the following Manifesto. The feudal system of industry. feudal lords. slaves. directly facing each other: Bourgeoisie and Proletariat. railways extended. vassals. apprentices. by industrial millionaires. the rounding of the Cape. stood in constant opposition to one another. oppressor and oppressed. to industry. in the same proportion the bourgeoisie developed. In the earlier epochs of history. commerce. to communication by land. We see. To this end. knights. increased its capital. possesses. patrician and plebeian. subordinate gradations. Modern Industry. guild-masters. The place of manufacture was taken by the giant. carried on an uninterrupted. to navigation. division of labour between the different corporate guilds vanished in the face of division of labour in each single workshop. The manufacturing system took its place. Communists of various nationalities have assembled in London. opened up fresh ground for the rising bourgeoisie. an impulse never before known. guild-master and journeyman. we find almost everywhere a complicated arrangement of society into various orders. how the modern bourgeoisie is itself the product of a long course of . the place of the industrial middle class. in a word. to navigation. Flemish and Danish languages.
with their train of ancient and venerable prejudices and opinions. of a series of revolutions in the modes of production and of exchange. It has resolved personal worth into exchange value. patriarchal. uninterrupted disturbance of all social conditions. brutal exploitation. The need of a constantly expanding market for its products chases the bourgeoisie over the whole surface of the globe." It has drowned the most heavenly ecstasies of religious fervour. Roman aqueducts. It must nestle everywhere. than callous "cash payment. exclusive political sway. since the establishment of Modern Industry and of the world-market. on the contrary. has played a most revolutionary part. all that is holy is profaned. but in every quarter of . serving either the semi-feudal or the absolute monarchy as a counterpoise against the nobility. the poet. and in place of the numberless and indefeasible chartered freedoms. of chivalrous enthusiasm. veiled by religious and political illusions. unconscionable freedom—Free Trade. and thereby the relations of production. historically. and with them the whole relations of society. All old-established national industries have been destroyed or are daily being destroyed. into its paid wage labourers. afterwards. Conservation of the old modes of production in unaltered form. here independent urban republic (as in Italy and Germany). settle everywhere. Each step in the development of the bourgeoisie was accompanied by a corresponding political advance of that class. the man of science. In one word. not only at home. in the period of manufacture proper. corner-stone of the great monarchies in general. has set up that single. All fixed. it has conducted expeditions that put in the shade all former Exoduses of nations and crusades. it has drawn from under the feet of industry the national ground on which it stood. but raw material drawn from the remotest zones. everlasting uncertainty and agitation distinguish the bourgeois epoch from all earlier ones. shameless. the priest. the lawyer. It has been the first to show what man's activity can bring about. for exploitation. The bourgeoisie has through its exploitation of the world-market given a cosmopolitan character to production and consumption in every country. It has accomplished wonders far surpassing Egyptian pyramids. his real conditions of life. They are dislodged by new industries. The executive of the modern State is but a committee for managing the common affairs of the whole bourgeoisie. establish connexions everywhere. An oppressed class under the sway of the feudal nobility. idyllic relations. Constant revolutionising of production. conquered for itself. in the modern representative State. which Reactionists so much admire. and Gothic cathedrals. found its fitting complement in the most slothful indolence. whose introduction becomes a life and death question for all civilised nations. and his relations with his kind. All that is solid melts into air. the bourgeoisie has at last. The bourgeoisie. It has pitilessly torn asunder the motley feudal ties that bound man to his "natural superiors. and man is at last compelled to face with sober senses. in fact. The bourgeoisie has disclosed how it came to pass that the brutal display of vigour in the Middle Ages. by industries that no longer work up indigenous raw material. and has reduced the family relation to a mere money relation.development. It has converted the physician. the first condition of existence for all earlier industrial classes." and has left remaining no other nexus between man and man than naked self-interest. fast-frozen relations. To the great chagrin of Reactionists. The bourgeoisie. The bourgeoisie has torn away from the family its sentimental veil. an armed and selfgoverning association in the mediaeval commune. The bourgeoisie has stripped of its halo every occupation hitherto honoured and looked up to with reverent awe. has put an end to all feudal. there taxable "third estate" of the monarchy (as in France). was. The bourgeoisie cannot exist without constantly revolutionising the instruments of production. all new-formed ones become antiquated before they can ossify. are swept away. in the icy water of egotistical calculation. of philistine sentimentalism. industries whose products are consumed. naked. and. direct. wherever it has got the upper hand.
The bourgeoisie has subjected the country to the rule of the towns. in one word. governments and systems of taxation. i. They had to be burst asunder. with one government. with separate interests. It has created enormous cities. or but loosely connected provinces. Subjection of Nature's forces to man. even the most barbarian. The bourgeoisie. were generated in feudal society. Independent. Just as it has made the country dependent on the towns. electric telegraphs. we have intercourse in every direction. A similar movement is going on before our own eyes. there arises a world literature. one frontier and one customs-tariff. would have seemed an absurdity—the epidemic of over-production. of exchange and of property. The bourgeoisie keeps more and more doing away with the scattered state of the population. Modern bourgeois society with its relations of production. satisfied by the productions of the country. but also of the previously created productive forces. and from the numerous national and local literatures. by the immensely facilitated means of communication. In these crises a great part not only of the existing products.. Into their place stepped free competition. It is enough to mention the commercial crises that by their periodical return put on its trial. by the rapid improvement of all instruments of production. the conditions under which feudal society produced and exchanged. one national class-interest. we find new wants. the feudal relations of property became no longer compatible with the already developed productive forces. to become bourgeois themselves. accompanied by a social and political constitution adapted to it. it appears as if a . steam-navigation. whole populations conjured out of the ground—what earlier century had even a presentiment that such productive forces slumbered in the lap of social labour? We see then: the means of production and of exchange. In place of the old wants. on whose foundation the bourgeoisie built itself up. became lumped together into one nation. and has concentrated property in a few hands. so also in intellectual production. they became so many fetters. universal interdependence of nations. each time more threateningly. laws. It compels all nations. and by the economical and political sway of the bourgeois class. National one-sidedness and narrowmindedness become more and more impossible. For many a decade past the history of industry and commerce is but the history of the revolt of modern productive forces against modern conditions of production. it compels them to introduce what it calls civilisation into their midst. canalisation of rivers. against the property relations that are the conditions for the existence of the bourgeoisie and of its rule. and of property. application of chemistry to industry and agriculture. The intellectual creations of individual nations become common property. one code of laws.the globe. who is no longer able to control the powers of the nether world whom he has called up by his spells. The necessary consequence of this was political centralisation. In one word. is like the sorcerer. the feudal organisation of agriculture and manufacturing industry. The bourgeoisie. are periodically destroyed. And as in material. It has agglomerated production. nations into civilisation. At a certain stage in the development of these means of production and of exchange. In these crises there breaks out an epidemic that. railways. has created more massive and more colossal productive forces than have all preceding generations together. to adopt the bourgeois mode of production. Society suddenly finds itself put back into a state of momentary barbarism. the existence of the entire bourgeois society. clearing of whole continents for cultivation. so it has made barbarian and semi-barbarian countries dependent on the civilised ones. draws all. nations of peasants on nations of bourgeois. with which it forces the barbarians' intensely obstinate hatred of foreigners to capitulate. they were burst asunder. the East on the West. a society that has conjured up such gigantic means of production and of exchange. machinery. on pain of extinction. it creates a world after its own image. in all earlier epochs. The cheap prices of its commodities are the heavy artillery with which it batters down all Chinese walls. requiring for their satisfaction the products of distant lands and climes. of the means of production. has greatly increased the urban population as compared with the rural.e. during its rule of scarce one hundred years. In place of the old local and national seclusion and self-sufficiency. and has thus rescued a considerable part of the population from the idiocy of rural life.
The more openly this despotism proclaims gain to be its end and aim. so far at an end. endanger the existence of bourgeois property. But not only has the bourgeoisie forged the weapons that bring death to itself. to the means of subsistence that he requires for his maintenance. partly . they bring disorder into the whole of bourgeois society. by which they are fettered. is developed. it has also called into existence the men who are to wield those weapons—the modern working class—the proletarians. according to their age and sex. who must sell themselves piece-meal. like every other article of commerce. That is to say. by the conquest of new markets. The productive forces at the disposal of society no longer tend to further the development of the conditions of bourgeois property.e. Hence. too much means of subsistence. the more petty. and consequently. And how does the bourgeoisie get over these crises? On the one hand inforced destruction of a mass of productive forces. The less the skill and exertion of strength implied in manual labour. industry and commerce seem to be destroyed. the modern working class. and by diminishing the means whereby crises are prevented. all charm for the workman.famine. by paving the way for more extensive and more destructive crises. etc. on the other. and it is only the most simple. As privates of the industrial army they are placed under the command of a perfect hierarchy of officers and sergeants. The lower strata of the middle class—the small tradespeople. they are daily and hourly enslaved by the machine.. Modern industry has converted the little workshop of the patriarchal master into the great factory of the industrial capitalist. Differences of age and sex have no longer any distinctive social validity for the working class. These labourers. by the over-looker. more or less expensive to use. and are consequently exposed to all the vicissitudes of competition. and who find work only so long as their labour increases capital. the more modern industry becomes developed. Not only are they slaves of the bourgeois class. and. retired tradesmen generally. Owing to the extensive use of machinery and to division of labour. capital. to all the fluctuations of the market. shopkeepers. In proportion therefore. the more hateful and the more embittering it is. the more is the labour of men superseded by that of women. above all. too much industry. He becomes an appendage of the machine. most monotonous. and for the propagation of his race. they have become too powerful for these conditions. Masses of labourers. All are instruments of labour. the cost of production of a workman is restricted. the shopkeeper. are organised like soldiers. by the individual bourgeois manufacturer himself. developed—a class of labourers. The conditions of bourgeois society are too narrow to comprise the wealth created by them. crowded into the factory. on the contrary. and so soon as they overcome these fetters. The weapons with which the bourgeoisie felled feudalism to the ground are now turned against the bourgeoisie itself. the work of the proletarians has lost all individual character. in the same proportion is the proletariat. a universal war of devastation had cut off the supply of every means of subsistence. etc. is equal to its cost of production. in the same proportion the burden of toil also increases. the landlord. as the repulsiveness of the work increases. in other words. the wage decreases. by increase of the work exacted in a given time or by increased speed of the machinery. the pawnbroker. too much commerce. who live only so long as they find work. that he receives his wages in cash. and of the bourgeois State. No sooner is the exploitation of the labourer by the manufacturer. that is required of him. and why? Because there is too much civilisation. Nay more. and most easily acquired knack. almost entirely. and therefore also of labour. In proportion as the bourgeoisie. in proportion as the use of machinery and division of labour increases. are a commodity. the handicraftsmen and peasants—all these sink gradually into the proletariat. and by the more thorough exploitation of the old ones. i. than he is set upon by the other portions of the bourgeoisie. whether by prolongation of the working hours. But the price of a commodity.
but against the instruments of production themselves. and consequently into a political party. It compels legislative recognition of particular interests of the workers. the course of development of the proletariat. which class. thanks to railways. The proletariat goes through various stages of development. to attain which the burghers of the Middle Ages. they seek to restore by force the vanished status of the workman of the Middle Ages. its strength grows. in proportion as machinery obliterates all distinctions of labour. Thus the proletariat is recruited from all classes of the population. but of the union of the bourgeoisie. they destroy imported wares that compete with their labour. with their miserable highways. with the bourgeoisie of foreign countries. and nearly everywhere reduces wages to the same low level. At this stage. to drag it into the political arena. The bourgeoisie finds itself involved in a constant battle. to ask for its help. they found permanent associations in order to make provision beforehand for these occasional revolts. but the enemies of their enemies. With its birth begins its struggle with the bourgeoisie. Altogether collisions between the classes of the old society further. but only for a time. for a time. whose interests have become antagonistic to the progress of industry. and thus. into one national struggle between classes. at all times. stronger. required centuries. They direct their attacks not against the bourgeois conditions of production. supplies the proletariat . In all these battles it sees itself compelled to appeal to the proletariat. Here and there the contest breaks out into riots. But it ever rises up again. in order to attain its own political ends. they set factories ablaze. But with the development of industry the proletariat not only increases in number. The unceasing improvement of machinery. is compelled to set the whole proletariat in motion. make the wages of the workers ever more fluctuating. Thus the whole historical movement is concentrated in the hands of the bourgeoisie. mightier. At first the contest is carried on by individual labourers. If anywhere they unite to form more compact bodies. and is moreover yet.because their diminutive capital does not suffice for the scale on which Modern Industry is carried on. Thus the ten-hours' bill in England was carried. The real fruit of their battles lies. but in the ever-expanding union of the workers. the landowners. not in the immediate result. this is not yet the consequence of their own active union. then by the workpeople of a factory. At first with the aristocracy. firmer. and is swamped in the competition with the large capitalists. The bourgeoisie itself. in one locality. achieve in a few years. the petty bourgeoisie. And that union. But every class struggle is a political struggle. ever more rapidly developing. all of the same character. the modern proletarians. At this stage the labourers still form an incoherent mass scattered over the whole country. it becomes concentrated in greater masses. the collisions between individual workmen and individual bourgeois take more and more the character of collisions between two classes. and it feels that strength more. every victory so obtained is a victory for the bourgeoisie. able to do so. the non-industrial bourgeois. in many ways. then by the operatives of one trade. partly because their specialized skill is rendered worthless by the new methods of production. and broken up by their mutual competition. This organisation of the proletarians into a class. therefore. with those portions of the bourgeoisie itself. It was just this contact that was needed to centralise the numerous local struggles. they smash to pieces machinery. they club together in order to keep up the rate of wages. The various interests and conditions of life within the ranks of the proletariat are more and more equalised. the remnants of absolute monarchy. later on. Thereupon the workers begin to form combinations (Trades Unions) against the bourgeois. by taking advantage of the divisions among the bourgeoisie itself. against the individual bourgeois who directly exploits them. is continually being upset again by the competition between the workers themselves. the proletarians do not fight their enemies. This union is helped on by the improved means of communication that are created by modern industry and that place the workers of different localities in contact with one another. therefore. The growing competition among the bourgeois. Now and then the workers are victorious. and the resulting commercial crises. makes their livelihood more and more precarious.
Finally. They have nothing of their own to secure and to fortify. they desert their own standpoint to place themselves at that of the proletariat. by the advance of industry. The proletariat. to save from extinction their existence as fractions of the middle class. The proletariat of each country must. The "dangerous class. it furnishes the proletariat with weapons for fighting the bourgeoisie.with its own instruments of political and general education. glaring character. These also supply the proletariat with fresh elements of enlightenment and progress. all these fight against the bourgeoisie. modern industrial labour. those of old society at large are already virtually swamped. his relation to his wife and children has no longer anything in common with the bourgeois family-relations. be swept into the movement by a proletarian revolution. Nay more. In depicting the most general phases of the development of the proletariat. we traced the more or less veiled civil war. The proletarian movement is the self-conscious. but conservative. and in particular. raging within existing society. If by chance they are revolutionary. morality. they are reactionary. its conditions of life. Of all the classes that stand face to face with the bourgeoisie today. they are so only in view of their impending transfer into the proletariat. cannot raise itself up. cannot stir. or are at least threatened in their conditions of existence. their mission is to destroy all previous securities for. modern subjection to capital. the peasant. so now a portion of the bourgeoisie goes over to the proletariat. The lower middle class. the proletariat is its special and essential product. the process of dissolution going on within the ruling class. Just as. The other classes decay and finally disappear in the face of Modern Industry. they thus defend not their present. may. . as we have already seen. The proletarian is without property. in times when the class struggle nears the decisive hour. a section of the nobility went over to the bourgeoisie. They are therefore not revolutionary. the struggle of the proletariat with the bourgeoisie is at first a national struggle. All the preceding classes that got the upper hand. in America as in Germany. Though not in substance. without the whole superincumbent strata of official society being sprung into the air. assumes such a violent. the proletariat alone is a really revolutionary class. for they try to roll back the wheel of history. however. sought to fortify their already acquired status by subjecting society at large to their conditions of appropriation. In the conditions of the proletariat. or in the interests of minorities. of course. Law. precipitated into the proletariat. that a small section of the ruling class cuts itself adrift. Further. that passively rotting mass thrown off by the lowest layers of old society. a portion of the bourgeois ideologists. All previous historical movements were movements of minorities. yet in form. the lowest stratum of our present society. independent movement of the immense majority. entire sections of the ruling classes are." the social scum. and where the violent overthrow of the bourgeoisie lays the foundation for the sway of the proletariat. individual property. The proletarians cannot become masters of the productive forces of society. in the interests of the immense majority. the class that holds the future in its hands. the small manufacturer. and thereby also every other previous mode of appropriation. who have raised themselves to the level of comprehending theoretically the historical movement as a whole. the artisan. except by abolishing their own previous mode of appropriation. up to the point where that war breaks out into open revolution. religion. but their future interests. has stripped him of every trace of national character. the same in England as in France. and joins the revolutionary class. behind which lurk in ambush just as many bourgeois interests. therefore. first of all settle matters with its own bourgeoisie. in fact within the whole range of society. in other words. the shopkeeper. here and there. and insurances of. at an earlier period. prepare it far more for the part of a bribed tool of reactionary intrigue. are to him so many bourgeois prejudices.
under the yoke of feudal absolutism. by their revolutionary combination. the most advanced and resolute section of the working-class parties of every country. actual relations springing from an existing class struggle. conquest of political power by the proletariat. in general terms. and the ultimate general results of the proletarian movement. and to impose its conditions of existence upon society as an over-riding law. sinks deeper and deeper below the conditions of existence of his own class. Society can no longer live under this bourgeoisie. II. by this or that would-be universal reformer. produces. The Communists. the condition for capital is wage-labour. and pauperism develops more rapidly than population and wealth. due to competition. replaces the isolation of the labourers. or discovered. above all. certain conditions must be assured to it under which it can. continue its slavish existence. practically. They have no interests separate and apart from those of the proletariat as a whole. therefore. cuts from under its feet the very foundation on which the bourgeoisie produces and appropriates products. by which to shape and mould the proletarian movement. that it has to feed him. He becomes a pauper. because it cannot help letting him sink into such a state. at least. The essential condition for the existence. What the bourgeoisie. The theoretical conclusions of the Communists are in no way based on ideas or principles that have been invented. is its own grave-diggers. They do not set up any sectarian principles of their own. in the period of serfdom. in other words. The abolition of existing property relations is not at all a distinctive feature of Communism.Hitherto. whose involuntary promoter is the bourgeoisie. every form of society has been based. therefore. are on the one hand. (2) In the various stages of development which the struggle of the working class against the bourgeoisie has to pass through. its existence is no longer compatible with society. the conditions. that section which pushes forward all others. PROLETARIANS AND COMMUNISTS In what relation do the Communists stand to the proletarians as a whole? The Communists do not form a separate party opposed to other working-class parties. on the other hand. But in order to oppress a class. theoretically. just as the petty bourgeois. The development of Modern Industry. instead of being fed by him. they point out and bring to the front the common interests of the entire proletariat. therefore. The serf. They merely express. is the formation and augmentation of capital. It is unfit to rule because it is incompetent to assure an existence to its slave within his slavery. Its fall and the victory of the proletariat are equally inevitable. due to association. they always and everywhere represent the interests of the movement as a whole. on the antagonism of oppressing and oppressed classes. managed to develop into a bourgeois. overthrow of the bourgeois supremacy. And here it becomes evident. Wage-labour rests exclusively on competition between the laborers. as we have already seen. and for the sway of the bourgeois class. that the bourgeoisie is unfit any longer to be the ruling class in society. raised himself to membership in the commune. they have over the great mass of the proletariat the advantage of clearly understanding the line of march. independently of all nationality. The modern laborer. . The advance of industry. on the contrary. instead of rising with the progress of industry. from a historical movement going on under our very eyes. The immediate aim of the Communist is the same as that of all the other proletarian parties: formation of the proletariat into a class. The Communists are distinguished from the other working-class parties by this only: (1) In the national struggles of the proletarians of the different countries.
To be a capitalist. Or do you mean modern bourgeois private property? But does wage-labour create any property for the labourer? Not a bit. living labour is but a means to increase accumulated labour. on the exploitation of the many by the few. We Communists have been reproached with the desire of abolishing the right of personally acquiring property as the fruit of a man's own labour. All that we want to do away with. the past dominates the present. the present dominates the past. It loses its class-character. is the miserable character of this appropriation. and which cannot increase except upon condition of begetting a new supply of wage-labour for fresh exploitation. abolished feudal property in favour of bourgeois property. Let us now take wage-labour. therefore. the wage-labourer appropriates by means of his labour. accumulated labour is but a means to widen. In bourgeois society. but a social status in production. therefore. activity and independence. merely suffices to prolong and reproduce a bare existence. nay. Property. that kind of property which exploits wage-labour. that quantum of the means of subsistence. is to have not only a purely personal. It creates capital.e. self-earned property! Do you mean the property of the petty artisan and of the small peasant. which property is alleged to be the groundwork of all personal freedom. which is absolutely requisite in bare existence as a labourer. . When..e. while the living person is dependent and has no individuality. in Communist society. and that leaves no surplus wherewith to command the labour of others. therefore. In this sense. Let us examine both sides of this antagonism.All property relations in the past have continually been subject to historical change consequent upon the change in historical conditions. it is a social power. but the abolition of bourgeois property. for example. The distinguishing feature of Communism is not the abolition of property generally. not a personal. and is allowed to live only in so far as the interest of the ruling class requires it. a form of property that preceded the bourgeois form? There is no need to abolish that. the development of industry has to a great extent already destroyed it. can it be set in motion. and only by the united action of many members. that is based on class antagonisms. personal property is not thereby transformed into social property. In bourgeois society capital is independent and has individuality. What. It is only the social character of the property that is changed. But modern bourgeois private property is the final and most complete expression of the system of producing and appropriating products. The French Revolution. i. is based on the antagonism of capital and wage-labour. the theory of the Communists may be summed up in the single sentence: Abolition of private property. Capital is. to promote the existence of the labourer. Hard-won. i. We by no means intend to abolish this personal appropriation of the products of labour. In Communist society. and is still destroying it daily. in the last resort. into the property of all members of society. The average price of wage-labour is the minimum wage. in its present form. under which the labourer lives merely to increase capital. Capital is a collective product. an appropriation that is made for the maintenance and reproduction of human life. to enrich. only by the united action of all members of society. self-acquired. therefore. In bourgeois society. capital is converted into common property..
You must. the necessary condition for whose existence is the non-existence of any property for the immense majority of society. The whole of this objection is but another expression of the tautology: that there can no longer be any wage-labour when there is no longer any capital. whose essential character and direction are determined by the economical conditions of existence of your class. under the present bourgeois conditions of production. free selling and buying disappears also. i. a will. and all the other "brave words" of our bourgeoisie about freedom in general. But don't wrangle with us so long as you apply. But in your existing society. for those of its members who work. only in contrast with restricted selling and buying. its existence for the few is solely due to its non-existence in the hands of those nine-tenths. been urged against the Communistic modes of producing and appropriating intellectual products. to the bourgeois. and universal laziness will overtake us. Just as. confess that by "individual" you mean no other person than the bourgeois. with the fettered traders of the Middle Ages. so the disappearance of class culture is to him identical with the disappearance of all culture. the disappearance of class property is the disappearance of production itself. You are horrified at our intending to do away with private property. abolition of individuality and freedom! And rightly so. bourgeois independence. from that moment. be swept out of the way. Precisely so. free trade. that is just what we intend. into capital. etc. culture.e. This talk about free selling and buying. do not work. From the moment when labour can no longer be converted into capital. to our intended abolition of bourgeois property. acquire nothing. or rent. The selfish misconception that induces you to transform into eternal laws of nature and of reason. for the enormous majority. This person must. law. and of the bourgeoisie itself. private property is already done away with for nine-tenths of the population. just as your jurisprudence is but the will of your class made into a law for all. money. but have no meaning when opposed to the Communistic abolition of buying and selling. It has been objected that upon the abolition of private property all work will cease.And the abolition of this state of things is called by the bourgeois. indeed. You reproach us. therefore. All objections urged against the Communistic mode of producing and appropriating material products. By freedom is meant. and made impossible. That culture. a mere training to act as a machine. bourgeois society ought long ago to have gone to the dogs through sheer idleness. with intending to do away with a form of property. than the middle-class owner of property. in the same way. have a meaning. free selling and buying. you say individuality vanishes. if any. The abolition of bourgeois individuality. you reproach us with intending to do away with your property. But if selling and buying disappears. is. Your very ideas are but the outgrowth of the conditions of your bourgeois production and bourgeois property. Communism deprives no man of the power to appropriate the products of society. of the bourgeois conditions of production. therefore. and bourgeois freedom is undoubtedly aimed at. . into a social power capable of being monopolised. According to this. from the moment when individual property can no longer be transformed into bourgeois property. have.. and those who acquire anything. In one word. the standard of your bourgeois notions of freedom. the loss of which he laments. all that it does is to deprive him of the power to subjugate the labour of others by means of such appropriation.
He hears that the instruments of production are to be exploited in common. what you admit in the case of feudal property. and both will vanish with the vanishing of capital. on private gain. at the most. they do but seek to alter the character of that intervention. in substitution for a hypocritically concealed. take the greatest pleasure in seducing each other's wives. they pretend. But. In its completely developed form this family exists only among the bourgeoisie. and to rescue education from the influence of the ruling class. by the action of Modern Industry. For the rest. becomes all the more disgusting. by the intervention. it is self-evident that the abolition of the present system of production must bring with it the abolition of the community of women springing from that system. What you see clearly in the case of ancient property. it has existed almost from time immemorial.the social forms springing from your present mode of production and form of property—historical relations that rise and disappear in the progress of production—this misconception you share with every ruling class that has preceded you. you will say. The Communists have no need to introduce community of women. And your education! Is not that also social. of prostitution both public and private. Bourgeois marriage is in reality a system of wives in common and thus. an openly legalised community of women. the more. when we replace home education by social. and their children transformed into simple articles of commerce and instruments of labour.? The Communists have not invented the intervention of society in education. But you Communists would introduce community of women. based? On capital. Abolition of the family! Even the most radical flare up at this infamous proposal of the Communists. not to speak of common prostitutes. you are of course forbidden to admit in the case of your own bourgeois form of property. The bourgeois clap-trap about the family and education. etc. about the hallowed co-relation of parent and child. the bourgeois family. But this state of things finds its complement in the practical absence of the family among the proletarians. For the rest. what the Communists might possibly be reproached with. of society. The bourgeois family will vanish as a matter of course when its complement vanishes. nothing is more ridiculous than the virtuous indignation of our bourgeois at the community of women which. He has not even a suspicion that the real point is to do away with the status of women as mere instruments of production. is that they desire to introduce. we destroy the most hallowed of relations. The Communists are further reproached with desiring to abolish countries and nationality. . The bourgeois sees in his wife a mere instrument of production. and determined by the social conditions under which you educate. by means of schools. direct or indirect. can come to no other conclusion than that the lot of being common to all will likewise fall to the women. Our bourgeois. and. all family ties among the proletarians are torn asunder. screams the whole bourgeoisie in chorus. is to be openly and officially established by the Communists. Do you charge us with wanting to stop the exploitation of children by their parents? To this crime we plead guilty. i. not content with having the wives and daughters of their proletarians at their disposal. naturally..e. and in public prostitution. On what foundation is the present family.
besides. than that intellectual production changes its character in proportion as material production is changed? The ruling ideas of each age have ever been the ideas of its ruling class. Justice. man's consciousness. must constitute itself the nation. are not deserving of serious examination. and. the elements of a new one have been created.The working men have no country. ." it will be said. one fact is common to all past ages. moral. moves within certain common forms. The supremacy of the proletariat will cause them to vanish still faster. the exploitation of one nation by another will also be put an end to. it abolishes all religion. itself national. which cannot completely vanish except with the total disappearance of class antagonisms. antagonisms that assumed different forms at different epochs. it is. in his social relations and in his social life? What else does the history of ideas prove. But Communism abolishes eternal truths. owing to the development of the bourgeoisie. though not in the bourgeois sense of the word. then. "Undoubtedly. philosophical and juridical ideas have been modified in the course of historical development. The charges against Communism made from a religious. National differences and antagonisms between peoples are daily more and more vanishing. In proportion as the exploitation of one individual by another is put an end to. constantly survived this change. to the world-market. We cannot take from them what they have not got. no wonder that its development involves the most radical rupture with traditional ideas. The Communist revolution is the most radical rupture with traditional property relations. When Christian ideas succumbed in the 18th century to rationalist ideas. generally. Does it require deep intuition to comprehend that man's ideas. eternal truths. of the leading civilised countries at least. to freedom of commerce. viz. In proportion as the antagonism between classes within the nation vanishes. is one of the first conditions for the emancipation of the proletariat. instead of constituting them on a new basis. and law. When people speak of ideas that revolutionise society. views and conceptions. a philosophical. that the social consciousness of past ages. and all morality. No wonder. and that the dissolution of the old ideas keeps even pace with the dissolution of the old conditions of existence. in one word. Since the proletariat must first of all acquire political supremacy. so far." What does this accusation reduce itself to? The history of all past society has consisted in the development of class antagonisms. "religious. But whatever form they may have taken. etc. they do but express the fact. must rise to be the leading class of the nation. United action. or general ideas." "There are. that are common to all states of society. changes with every change in the conditions of his material existence. despite all the multiplicity and variety it displays. from an ideological standpoint. that within the old society. But religion. feudal society fought its death battle with the then revolutionary bourgeoisie. the ancient religions were overcome by Christianity. to uniformity in the mode of production and in the conditions of life corresponding thereto. morality philosophy. When the ancient world was in its last throes.. it therefore acts in contradiction to all past historical experience. The ideas of religious liberty and freedom of conscience merely gave expression to the sway of free competition within the domain of knowledge. the hostility of one nation to another will come to an end. such as Freedom. political science. the exploitation of one part of society by the other.
6. 8. Abolition of all right of inheritance. We have seen above. necessitate further inroads upon the old social order.. therefore. by a more equable distribution of the population over the country. Equal liability of all to labour. of the proletariat organised as the ruling class. When. and the improvement of the soil generally in accordance with a common plan. Political power. is to raise the proletariat to the position of ruling as to win the battle of democracy. Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries.e. and are unavoidable as a means of entirely revolutionising the mode of production. Establishment of industrial armies. that the first step in the revolution by the working class. Centralisation of the means of communication and transport in the hands of the State. but which. class distinctions have disappeared. this cannot be effected except by means of despotic inroads on the rights of property. 3. sweeps away by force the old conditions of production. and will thereby have abolished its own supremacy as a class. by degrees. 2. 5. A heavy progressive or graduated income tax. is merely the organised power of one class for oppressing another. we shall have an association. . i. in the course of the movement. 4. In place of the old bourgeois society. &c. 7. Extension of factories and instruments of production owned by the State. as such. by the force of circumstances. in the beginning. the public power will lose its political character. especially for agriculture. it makes itself the ruling class. Free education for all children in public schools. properly so called. Combination of education with industrial production. all capital from the bourgeoisie. the following will be pretty generally applicable. Of course. and to increase the total of productive forces as rapidly as possible. These measures will of course be different in different countries. Nevertheless in the most advanced countries. in which the free development of each is the condition for the free development of all. along with these conditions. have swept away the conditions for the existence of class antagonisms and of classes generally. by means of a revolution. to organise itself as a class. then it will. &c. and all production has been concentrated in the hands of a vast association of the whole nation. to centralise all instruments of production in the hands of the State. 10. and on the conditions of bourgeois production. Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels. by means of measures. by means of a national bank with State capital and an exclusive monopoly. Abolition of children's factory labour in its present form. in the course of development. If the proletariat during its contest with the bourgeoisie is compelled. and. if.But let us have done with the bourgeois objections to Communism. Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes. 1. 9. with its classes and class antagonisms.. outstrip themselves. gradual abolition of the distinction between town and country. The proletariat will use its political supremacy to wrest. which appear economically insufficient and untenable. Centralisation of credit in the hands of the State. the bringing into cultivation of waste-lands.
In showing that. these aristocracies again succumbed to the hateful upstart. at times. But the people. and whispering in his ears sinister prophecies of coming catastrophe. monastic life and Mother Church? Christian Socialism is but the holy. which is destined to cut up root and branch the old order of society. Thus the aristocracy took their revenge by singing lampoons on their new master. they join in all coercive measures against the working class. Has not Christianity declaimed against private property. and deserted with loud and irreverent laughter. . half echo of the past. by its bitter. half menace of the future. against the State? Has it not preached in the place of these. In the French revolution of July 1830.III. in order to rally the people to them. witty and incisive criticism. What they upbraid the bourgeoisie with is not so much that it creates a proletariat. As the parson has ever gone hand in hand with the landlord. that under the bourgeois regime a class is being developed. so often as it joined them. the feudalists forget that they exploited under circumstances and conditions that were quite different. so little do they conceal the reactionary character of their criticism that their chief accusation against the bourgeoisie amounts to this. therefore. love. half lampoon. and that are now antiquated. under their rule. apparently. the aristocracy were obliged to lose sight. celibacy and mortification of the flesh. they forget that the modern bourgeoisie is the necessary offspring of their own form of society. But even in the domain of literature the old cries of the restoration period had become impossible. waved the proletarian alms-bag in front for a banner. The aristocracy. and in ordinary life. of their own interests. REACTIONARY SOCIALISM A. a serious political contest was altogether out of the question. they stoop to pick up the golden apples dropped from the tree of industry. saw on their hindquarters the old feudal coats of arms. through total incapacity to comprehend the march of modern history. charity and poverty. In this way arose Feudal Socialism: half lamentation. SOCIALIST AND COMMUNIST LITERATURE 1. beetroot-sugar. and honour for traffic in wool. Thenceforth. striking the bourgeoisie to the very heart's core. Nothing is easier than to give Christian asceticism a Socialist tinge. A literary battle alone remained possible. In order to arouse sympathy. and to formulate their indictment against the bourgeoisie in the interest of the exploited working class alone. and potato spirits. as that it creates a revolutionary proletariat. but always ludicrous in its effect. and in the English reform agitation. the modern proletariat never existed. and to barter truth. water with which the priest consecrates the heart-burnings of the aristocrat. against marriage. In political practice. Feudal Socialism Owing to their historical position. despite their high falutin phrases. it became the vocation of the aristocracies of France and England to write pamphlets against modern bourgeois society. For the rest. In pointing out that their mode of exploitation was different to that of the bourgeoisie. One section of the French Legitimists and "Young England" exhibited this spectacle. so has Clerical Socialism with Feudal Socialism.
In countries like France. within the framework of the old property relations that have been. not the only class whose conditions of existence pined and perished in the atmosphere of modern bourgeois society. the industrial war of extermination between nations. when stubborn historical facts had dispersed all intoxicating effects of self-deception. C. industrially and commercially. these two classes still vegetate side by side with the rising bourgeoisie. and the old society.B. German. in manufactures. and with them the old property relations. are being constantly hurled down into the proletariat by the action of competition. Sismondi was the head of this school. the demands of the first French Revolution were nothing more than the demands of "Practical Reason" in general. eagerly seized on this literature. It proved. should use. French social conditions had not immigrated along with them. only forgetting. Thus arose petty-bourgeois Socialism. by overlookers. would-be philosophers. however. fluctuating between proletariat and bourgeoisie and ever renewing itself as a supplementary part of bourgeois society. the crying inequalities in the distribution of wealth. this form of Socialism aspires either to restoring the old means of production and of exchange. however. they even see the moment approaching when they will completely disappear as an independent section of modern society. to be replaced. Thus. it is both reactionary and Utopian." Socialism The Socialist and Communist literature of France. it pointed out the inevitable ruin of the petty bourgeois and peasant. and that was the expression of the struggle against this power. in their criticism of the bourgeois regime. The individual members of this class. where the peasants constitute far more than half of the population. in that country. or to cramping the modern means of production and of exchange. The mediaeval burgesses and the small peasant proprietors were the precursors of the modern bourgeoisie. In contact with German social conditions. the dissolution of old moral bonds. agriculture and commerce. the concentration of capital and land in a few hands. and the utterance of the will of the revolutionary French bourgeoisie signified in their eyes the law of pure . and were bound to be. This school of Socialism dissected with great acuteness the contradictions in the conditions of modern production. In countries where modern civilisation has become fully developed. bailiffs and shopmen. patriarchal relations in agriculture. that when these writings immigrated from France into Germany. a literature that originated under the pressure of a bourgeoisie in power. Its last words are: corporate guilds for manufacture. and. the misery of the proletariat. had just begun its contest with feudal absolutism. of the old family relations. incontrovertibly. In those countries which are but little developed. as modern industry develops. this French literature lost all its immediate practical significance. It laid bare the hypocritical apologies of economists. the disastrous effects of machinery and division of labour. not only in France but also in England. and from the standpoint of these intermediate classes should take up the cudgels for the working class. it was natural that writers who sided with the proletariat against the bourgeoisie. and beaux esprits. to the German philosophers of the eighteenth century. In either case. German philosophers. overproduction and crises. was introduced into Germany at a time when the bourgeoisie. and assumed a purely literary aspect. exploded by those means. of the old nationalities. Petty-Bourgeois Socialism The feudal aristocracy was not the only class that was ruined by the bourgeoisie. In its positive aims. the standard of the peasant and petty bourgeois. a new class of petty bourgeois has been formed. the anarchy in production. Ultimately. this form of Socialism ended in a miserable fit of the blues. or "True.
" "German Science of Socialism. he felt conscious of having overcome "French one-sidedness" and of representing. not the interests of the proletariat. it. The introduction of these philosophical phrases at the back of the French historical criticisms they dubbed "Philosophy of Action. and especially. bourgeois legislation. with its corresponding economic conditions of existence. The world of the German literate consisted solely in bringing the new French ideas into harmony with their ancient philosophical conscience. but the requirements of truth. who exists only in the misty realm of philosophical fantasy.Will. whose silly echo it was. but the interests of Human Nature. beneath the French criticism of the economic functions of money. since it ceased in the hands of the German to express the struggle of one class with the other. presupposed the existence of modern bourgeois society. They wrote their philosophical nonsense beneath the French original. by this bourgeois movement. at the same time. The French Socialist and Communist literature was thus completely emasculated. they wrote "Alienation of Humanity. In Germany the petty-bourgeois class. the interest of the German Philistines. with their following of parsons." "True Socialism. of hurling the traditional anathemas against liberalism. and extolled its poor stock-in-trade in such mountebank fashion." and beneath the French criticism of the bourgeois State they wrote "dethronement of the Category of the General. it served as a welcome scarecrow against the threatening bourgeoisie." and so on. of Will as it was bound to be. in other words. and everything to lose. For instance. or rather. became more earnest. namely. just at that time. a relic of the sixteenth century. in the nick of time. has no reality. and the political constitution adapted thereto. To preserve this class is to preserve the existing state of things in Germany. bourgeois liberty and equality. and since then constantly cropping up again under various forms. While this "True" Socialism thus served the governments as a weapon for fighting the German bourgeoisie. by translation. German Socialism forgot. is the real social basis of the existing state of things. The fight of the German. on the one hand. bourgeois freedom of the press. To the absolute governments. The industrial and political supremacy of the bourgeoisie threatens it with certain destruction. of true human Will generally. against representative government. meanwhile gradually lost its pedantic innocence. which took its schoolboy task so seriously and solemnly. not true requirements. that the French criticism. By this. of the Prussian bourgeoisie. The German literate reversed this process with the profane French literature. of Man in general. professors." "Philosophical Foundation of Socialism. from . the very things whose attainment was the object of the pending struggle in Germany. This German Socialism. directly represented a reactionary interest. against feudal aristocracy and absolute monarchy. This annexation took place in the same way in which a foreign language is appropriated. dosed the German working-class risings. and of preaching to the masses that they had nothing to gain. It was a sweet finish after the bitter pills of floggings and bullets with which these same governments. the liberal movement. in annexing the French ideas without deserting their own philosophic point of view. And. country squires and officials. the long wished-for opportunity was offered to "True" Socialism of confronting the political movement with the Socialist demands. against bourgeois competition." and so forth. It is well known how the monks wrote silly lives of Catholic Saints over the manuscripts on which the classical works of ancient heathendom had been written. who belongs to no class.
This form of Socialism has. that in no respect affect the relations between capital and labour. and thereby to march straightway into the social New Jerusalem. and the German petty Philistine to be the typical man. an abolition that can be effected only by a revolution. and bourgeois Socialism develops this comfortable conception into various more or less complete systems. members of societies for the prevention of cruelty to animals. therefore. Socialistic interpretation. but should cast away all its hateful ideas concerning the bourgeoisie. lessen the cost. by showing that no mere political reform. In requiring the proletariat to carry out such a system. could be of any advantage to them. The robe of speculative cobwebs. German Socialism recognised. but. philanthropists. steeped in the dew of sickly sentiment. They desire the existing state of society minus its revolutionary and disintegrating elements." all skin and bone. We may cite Proudhon's Philosophie de la Misere as an example of this form. OR BOURGEOIS. however. this form of Socialism. moreover. improvers of the condition of the working class. based on the continued existence of these relations. it becomes a mere figure of speech. its own calling as the bombastic representative of the petty-bourgeois Philistine. "True" Socialism appeared to kill these two birds with one stone. this transcendental robe in which the German Socialists wrapped their sorry "eternal truths. humanitarians. embroidered with flowers of rhetoric. of bourgeois government. but only a change in the material conditions of existence. It spread like an epidemic. and of proclaiming its supreme and impartial contempt of all class struggles. A second and more practical. Protective duties: for the benefit of the working class. more and more. in economic relations. It went to the extreme length of directly opposing the "brutally destructive" tendency of Communism. SOCIALISM A part of the bourgeoisie is desirous of redressing social grievances. but less systematic. when. at the best. It proclaimed the German nation to be the model nation. This is the last word and the only seriously meant word of bourgeois Socialism. and simplify the administrative work. and only when. by no means understands abolition of the bourgeois relations of production. but administrative reforms. it but requires in reality. To every villainous meanness of this model man it gave a hidden. temperance fanatics. They wish for a bourgeoisie without a proletariat. To this section belong economists. the exact contrary of its real character. By changes in the material conditions of existence. in order to secure the continued existence of bourgeois society. reforms. Prison Reform: for the benefit of the working class. served to wonderfully increase the sale of their goods amongst such a public. It is summed up in the phrase: the bourgeois is a bourgeois—for the benefit of the working class. organisers of charity. The Socialistic bourgeois want all the advantages of modern social conditions without the struggles and dangers necessarily resulting therefrom. And on its part. 2. that the proletariat should remain within the bounds of existing society.the concentration of capital. form of this Socialism sought to depreciate every revolutionary movement in the eyes of the working class. With very few exceptions. hole-and-corner reformers of every imaginable kind. CONSERVATIVE. Bourgeois Socialism attains adequate expression. all the so-called Socialist and Communist publications that now (1847) circulate in Germany belong to the domain of this foul and enervating literature. The bourgeoisie naturally conceives the world in which it is supreme to be the best. higher. been worked out into complete systems. from the rise of a revolutionary proletariat. Free trade: for the benefit of the working class. . on the other.
historically created conditions of emancipation to fantastic ones. by preference. into the propaganda and the practical carrying out of their social plans. . The first direct attempts of the proletariat to attain its own ends. They therefore search after a new social science. these attempts necessarily failed. painted at a time when the proletariat is still in a very undeveloped state and has but a fantastic conception of its own position correspond with the first instinctive yearnings of that class for a general reconstruction of society. nay. and especially all revolutionary. they reject all political. that are to create these conditions. The founders of these systems see. But the proletariat. Hence. they habitually appeal to society at large. such as the writings of Babeuf and others. The revolutionary literature that accompanied these first movements of the proletariat had necessarily a reactionary character. in the prevailing form of society. necessarily doomed to failure. But these Socialist and Communist publications contain also a critical element. as well as to the absence of the economic conditions for its emancipation. to the ruling class. when once they understand their system. and by the force of example. Future history resolves itself. Bourgeois and Proletarians). causes Socialists of this kind to consider themselves far superior to all class antagonisms. Since the development of class antagonism keeps even pace with the development of industry. as being the most suffering class. action. The practical measures proposed in them—such as the abolition of the distinction between town and country. as well as the action of the decomposing elements. in their eyes. as yet in its infancy. owing to the then undeveloped state of the proletariat. offers to them the spectacle of a class without any historical initiative or any independent political movement. Historical action is to yield to their personal inventive action. as they find it. in every great modern revolution. to pave the way for the new social Gospel. fail to see in it the best possible plan of the best possible state of society? Hence. when feudal society was being overthrown. has always given voice to the demands of the proletariat. In the formation of their plans they are conscious of caring chiefly for the interests of the working class. and the gradual. as well as their own surroundings. indeed. spontaneous class-organisation of the proletariat to the organisation of society specially contrived by these inventors. does not as yet offer to them the material conditions for the emancipation of the proletariat. and could be produced by the impending bourgeois epoch alone. of the family. Owen and others. without distinction of class. Fourier. described above. For how can people. those of Saint-Simon. CRITICAL-UTOPIAN SOCIALISM AND COMMUNISM We do not here refer to that literature which. the proclamation of social harmony. Such fantastic pictures of future society. The Socialist and Communist systems properly so called. of the carrying on of industries for the account of private individuals. even that of the most favoured. Hence they are full of the most valuable materials for the enlightenment of the working class. They want to improve the condition of every member of society. The undeveloped state of the class struggle. and endeavour. the economic situation. Only from the point of view of being the most suffering class does the proletariat exist for them. spring into existence in the early undeveloped period. made in times of universal excitement. after new social laws.3. and of the wage system. of the struggle between proletariat and bourgeoisie (see Section 1. They attack every principle of existing society. It inculcated universal asceticism and social levelling in its crudest form. by small experiments. conditions that had yet to be produced. the class antagonisms. they wish to attain their ends by peaceful means.
at that time. In Switzerland they support the Radicals. that party which fomented the insurrection of Cracow in 1846. oppose the Chartists and the Reformistes. for the enforcement of the momentary interests of the working class." of establishing "Home Colonies. In France the Communists ally themselves with the Social-Democrats. in opposition to the progressive historical development of the proletariat. therefore. their disciples have. can only result from blind unbelief in the new Gospel. and the Fourierists in France. partly of Democratic Socialists. they are compelled to appeal to the feelings and purses of the bourgeois. therefore. The Owenites in England. indistinct and undefined forms only. IV. such action. according to them. of founding isolated "phalansteres. to deaden the class struggle and to reconcile the class antagonisms. the social and political conditions that the bourgeoisie must necessarily introduce along with its supremacy. the feudal squirearchy. They hold fast by the original views of their masters. only just cropping up. are recognised in their earliest. in every case. formed mere reactionary sects. Therefore. in the French sense. without losing sight of the fact that this party consists of antagonistic elements. point solely to the disappearance of class antagonisms which were. In proportion as the modern class struggle develops and takes definite shape. The Communists fight for the attainment of the immediate aims. But they never cease. The significance of Critical-Utopian Socialism and Communism bears an inverse relation to historical development.the conversion of the functions of the State into a mere superintendence of production. against the absolute monarchy. POSITION OF THE COMMUNISTS IN RELATION TO THE VARIOUS EXISTING OPPOSITION PARTIES Section II has made clear the relations of the Communists to the existing working-class parties. after the fall of the reactionary classes in Germany. violently oppose all political action on the part of the working class. are of a purely Utopian character. In Germany they fight with the bourgeoisie whenever it acts in a revolutionary way. partly of radical bourgeois. and in order that. By degrees they sink into the category of the reactionary conservative Socialists depicted above. respectively. endeavour. all these proposals. however. as so many weapons against the bourgeoisie. and the petty bourgeoisie." of setting up a "Little Icaria"—duodecimo editions of the New Jerusalem—and to realise all these castles in the air. they also represent and take care of the future of that movement. the fight against the . They. but in the movement of the present. in many respects. in order that the German workers may straightaway use. and that consistently. the right to take up a critical position in regard to phrases and illusions traditionally handed down from the great Revolution. therefore. in these publications. They still dream of experimental realisation of their social Utopias. to instil into the working class the clearest possible recognition of the hostile antagonism between bourgeoisie and proletariat. for a single instant. and which. such as the Chartists in England and the Agrarian Reformers in America. They. and by their fanatical and superstitious belief in the miraculous effects of their social science. revolutionary. In Poland they support the party that insists on an agrarian revolution as the prime condition for national emancipation. differing from these only by more systematic pedantry. These proposals. this fantastic standing apart from the contest. against the conservative and radical bourgeoisie. although the originators of these systems were. these fantastic attacks on it. reserving. lose all practical value and all theoretical justification.
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