James Giles20151268History 5Eva Vaillancourt11.8.2018History 5 Paper #2 In the Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx and Fredrick Engels present their view on the growing class struggles within a modern civilized society. Marx and Engels focus on human nature and how it is affected by the different economic factors at the time such as the expansion of private property, division of labor, and alienation. Sigmund Freud claims that civilization is humanities answer to the problem of pain and suffering.
In Civilizations and Discontents, Freud sees a problem with a growing civilization because of how it affects the human mind and negates certain primal instincts like aggression, to which he believes is counter-productive in sustaining happiness. Marx and Engels believe there won’t be happiness as long as there is there is the class struggle between the working class and the owner over the means of production. It’s because of this economic divide that, according to Marx, there will eventually need to be a revolution in order for people to be treated as equal and have the chance to be happy.
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The idea of civilization itself had become a problem in the late 19th century because of how modern society affects human nature in negative way by creating various internal and external conflicts. Marx believes that the class struggle born from a capitalist society is an external conflict that forces people against each other and will eventually lead to a revolution. The bourgeoise are the owners of the means of production and use the proletariat, or working class, as commodity to acquire more capital by exploiting their labor power.
“It has simplified the class antagonisms. Society as a whole is more and more splitting up into two great hostile camps, into two great classes directly facing each other: Bourgeoise and Proletariat” (Marx, pg. 61).
With the expansion of a civilized society the former guild masters are now the owners of their business and their employees are reduced to the limits their labor power. “The bourgeoise has stripped the halo of every occupation hitherto honored and looked up to with reverent awe. It has converted the physician, lawyer, the priest, the man of science, into its paid wage-laborers” (Marx, pg. 63).
Work becomes a means to an end for most people, even at the highly regarded positions. Marx claims that after the revolution there will be an equal society in which people are treated fairly and justly and that the economic system is what’s creating the divide. Capitalism is what creates competition whereas communism creates cooperation.