The Communist Manifesto was written in 1848 and published a year later in 1849. This Manifesto was commission by the communist league, a well known communist party based in England. This publication is a synopsis that helped the public understand the arguments and platform of the communist party’s ideologies. Karl Marx wrote the publication from his vision of history and focused on how the Bourgeois rose and how they would eventually fall.
The first chapter Bourgeois and Proletarians, Marx gives us a insight of how society was before the bourgeoisie rose to power. He explained that the earlier society was organized in a feudal order which was controlled by aristocrats and corporate guilds. In this era self sustainability was enough to provide for oneself but later due to the discovery of America and the expansion of the economic markets, the manufacturing class was born. This class took control of all international and domestic trade by producing goods at a more efficient and cheaper rate and later guilds were extinct. The bourgeoisie grew economic power and with economic strength they gained political power. They eradicated the feudalist ideologies within society that tried to hold them back.
The development of this manufacturing class created another social class that labored the new bourgeois industries. The proletariats were the wage laborers that sold their labor to these industries in order to provide for themselves and families. Marx explains that the bourgeois through the competition of private ownership of property exploit the proletariats. He believed segregation between two classes caused tension and would end with class conflicts and revolution. The class conflict caused more damage to society, hamper growth and be a continuous cycle if it’s not stopped. Marx believed classes should be extinct and replaced by communism.
The second chapter Proletariats and Communists, Marx explained the relationship between both the communist party and the proletariats and laid out the main ideas and strategies of the communist platform. He explained that the communist party would not work against other working classes but focus on the proletariats and build class consciousness. He believed that having class consciousness is an important step to proletariat emancipation. Marx stated that the communist prime objectives are to abolish private property and the bourgeois economics of capitalism. Abolishing capitalism is the only way the working class can break free. If capitalism is abolished the proletariats will destroy the bourgeois culture.
Chapter three Socialist and Communist Literature, Karl Marx explained the relationship between his movement and the socialist movements before his and the ones to come after. He believed that these socialist movements don’t understand how significant the proletarian struggle truly is. He outlines three problems that these socialists lack in their literature and ideas:
1) The socialist do not recognize that the only way to get rid of the oppression is to have the proletariat revolt.
2) They focus their literature on structures of previous models of society to try to solve the problems of the present problems. He believed if it didn’t eradicate the problem then it will not eradicate the problem now.
3) They deny the class character of the existing conflict. With that, Karl Marx believes only his followers truly understand and appreciate the historical movement that antagonism between both classes is the final and only act to end class conflict.