After some four years of collaboration, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels produced this incisive account of their conception of Communism, in which they envisage a society without classes, private property or a state. The Manifesto claims that the increasing exploitation of industrial workers will produce a global economic crisis, leading to a revolution in which Capitalism is overthrown by the new working class. This vision of Communism provided a theoretical basis of the political systems in Russia, China, Cuba and Eastern Europe, affecting the lives of millions throughout most of the last century. Yet even as we get further from the Cold War and its political landscape, The Communist Manifesto remains a classic text: as a powerful work of literature, as a fundamental historical document and, most importantly, as an unrivalled depiction of the limitless power of global Capitalism, which is a concern that still has great relevance today.
A rousing call to arms whose influence is still felt today
Originally published on the eve of the 1848 European revolutions, The Communist Manifesto is a condensed and incisive account of the worldview Marx and Engels developed during their hectic intellectual and political collaboration. Formulating the principles of dialectical materialism, they believed that labor creates wealth, hence capitalism is exploitive and antithetical to freedom.
This new edition includes an extensive introduction by Gareth Stedman Jones, Britain's leading expert on Marx and Marxism, providing a complete course for students of The Communist Manifesto, and demonstrating not only the historical importance of the text, but also its place in the world today.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
Karl Marx was born in 1818 in Trier, Germany and studied in Bonn and Berlin. Influenced by Hegel, he later reacted against idealist philosophy and began to develop his own theory of historical materialism. He related the state of society to its economic foundations and mode of production, and recommended armed revolution on the part of the proletariat. Together with Engels, who he met in Paris, he wrote the Manifesto of the Communist Party. He lived in England as a refugee until his death in 1888, after participating in an unsuccessful revolution in Germany. Ernst Mandel was a member of the Belgian TUV from 1954 to 1963 and was chosen for the annual Alfred Marshall Lectures by Cambridge University in 1978. He died in 1995 and the Guardian described him as 'one of the most creative and independent-minded revolutionary Marxist thinkers of the post-war world.'