This May, the OUP Philosophy team honors Karl Marx (1818-1883) as their Philosopher of the Month. 5 May 2018 marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of this revolutionary philosopher who is best known for The Communist Manifesto and Das Kapital, and the substantive theories he formulated on the capitalist mode of production, communism, and class struggles after the dawn of modernity.
Marx believed that the development of modern capitalism had an impact on social formations in a profound way, turning the relations between individuals into one of mutual exploitation and alienation. Mark’s radical belief in the inevitability of communism was articulated in the famously striking opening sentence of The Communist Manifesto: “A spectre is haunting Europe—the spectre of communism.’’ He saw that the working class could be agents of change.
Despite the shortcomings of his theories, Marx’s critique of modern society reverberates and remains relevant even in the twenty-first century. Understand why with our slideshow below on the life, legacy, and influence of Karl Marx.
Featured image: Berlin, Unter den Linden, Victoria Hotel between 1890 and 1905 via Wikimedia Commons.