“A spectre is haunting Europe—the spectre of communism,” so does Karl Marx Communist Manifesto begins, and concludes with, “The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Workingmen of all countries, unite.”
This day marks 177 years of the Communist Manifesto, a text capable of inciting revolution and changing the world for good, originally published on 21 February 1848 in collaboration with Friedrich Engels. The Communist Manifesto in the 19th and early 20th centuries became one of the most important programmatic pronouncements of European socialist and communist parties.
The Communist Manifesto encapsulates Karl Marx materialistic conception of history, wherein he buttressed that “the history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles”, and spanning the period from feudalism to 19th-century capitalism, a mode of production destined to be overthrown and replaced by the organization of the working class.
The communists, as the vanguard of the working class, were the faction that would achieve the “abolition of private property” and “raise the proletariat to the position of ruling class” in society.
With a fervent optimism on the cause of history and a powerful tool of ‘dialectical materialism,’ 138 years later, the Communist Manifesto has evolved into a lancelet that continuously hunts the bourgeoise society, both collectively and individually, employing the working class’s destined force.
“The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles.” Marx succeeded in shattering the ideological structures of the bourgeois class and capitalism more than any other social theorist in the world, bursting its seams and hooks of language, and thereby contesting its power to control and dominate the economic and political system.
Categorically, Marx appears to have deconstructed distinct kinds of social structure, segmenting them out of their sphere of influence and fostering a greater level of intellectual awareness.
Foreshadowing globalization 150 years before it happened, Communist Manifesto brims with prescient insights into the crisis facing capitalism today. It is an essential read for anyone seeking to understand the modern political, social, and economic landscape.
“The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains.” On a global basis, Marx proved successful in enlightening the third world countries of Africa, Asia, and Latin America of their perpetual dominance, under European cast spells of exploitation, particularly as producers of raw materials for the developed countries at an unequal trading relationship.
In the under-developed countries, Communist Manifesto has succeeded in igniting full-fledged ideological war against industrialized countries from thinkers, properly called ‘Marxist’ who were motivated by the writings of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels.
Specifically in Africa, Marxism has sparked a flurry of radical rages and criticism notably from Claude Ake, a Nigerian philosopher, Kwame Nkrumah, a Ghanaian political theorist, Julius Nyerere, Frantz Fanon, Thomas Sankara, Govan Mbeki, and others.
Throughout this time, The Communist Manifesto has kept pace with the century’s worldwide economic crises and historic upheavals, developing its programmatic nature.
Above all, it is envisioned as a success in the cause of history. It’s a fraternal text not just because of its common voice, but also because it’s written as an open letter to mankind, the oppressed, and the working classes. “Workingmen of all countries, unite.”