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The Impact of the Industrial Revolution on Karl Marx and His Development of the Communist Manifesto

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The Impact of the Industrial Revolution on Karl Marx and his Development of the Communist Manifesto

Karl Marx interpreted the Industrial Revolution as an event that developed a volatile governmental structure, and perceived it as on that would soon crumble in a decisive uprising. His beliefs have globally impacted the industrializing as they fueled socialist actions and whose foundations depended heavily on the Union factions. Fundamentally, the economic boom became the very purpose for Karl Marx to develop the Communist Manifesto. He witnessed how the working class has been exploited by the more affluent members of society, especially seeing that they, as the Proletariat, were mainly responsible for the ownership of the leading manufacturing companies that sustained the nation. Presently, the Communist Manifesto still continues to symbolize the fundamentals of literature for the leftists and social parliamentary actions, mainly as a result of Karl Marx having been amongst the first individuals who dared to condemn the offensive scheme of Capitalism and offered the citizens alternative and, arguably, better living conditions. His hope was to create a more just place for the all the people in a community, where everyone is viewed at as equals and can share the income that well deserved from their labor.

The Industrial Revolution profoundly impacted the general community and changed the course of the 19th-century lifestyle, shifting it from its once medieval constitution into a new civilization dominated by new capitalist rule.[1] The Proletariat was conceived during the economic revolution, which initially established in England during the 18th, and has since spread and gained ground in civilizations worldwide.[2] Advances in steam engineering allowed large groups of manufacturers to embrace new mechanisms and technology. As the need for resources grew, people also began calling for new means of efficient transportation to accommodate the demands of industries. Soon enough, farmers and serfs began relocating to the bigger towns to also benefit from the better working conditions and the higher wages found in the new workshops. Despite the many advances, employees still didn't manage to earn the pay deserved for their labor and were even obligated to live in overpopulated slums, while industry proprietors made outstanding earnings and lived extravagantly. [3]

With the rise of urbanization came widespread discontent and, by the 19th century, the old bourgeoisie and new peasantry overthrown by a new urban class, defined by the middle-class aristocracy and the proletariat.[4] As a result of this financial and social change, some new philosophies and literature emerged capturing this atmosphere of new political and social change.[5] The outcomes of the Industrial Revolution are considered both beneficial and cynical and, despite the growth of technology and modernization which has undoubtedly helped form the cutting-edge society, it also created a political and financial situation that encouraged dangerous socialist ideals.[6] The financial system ruled by some of the big private companies, which competed to provide great merchandise for cheap. Due to these circumstances, Capitalism resulted from a by-product of the industrial changes. Marx viewed and analyzed these new conditions, in particular, the relationship between wealthy and poor. He also theorized that all historical and social changes resulted from the different class struggles, such as the "bourgeoisie 'haves' and the proletariat 'have-nots.'" Marx believed that working class was exploited by the rich and, from his observations, prophesied that abused proletariat would eventually retaliate and fight their oppressors by bringing down the capitalist bourgeoisie. Finally, this would result in the creation of a communist alliance, which would be kingdom free from class differences and where production would be divided equally amongst all nationals.[7] It was this new thinking, and that would come to be the source of Karl Marx's The Communist Manifesto.[8]         

It is fair to say that it was the conditions resulting from the Industrial Revolution, whose outcomes were seen all over Europe, that lead to the ideas of Karl Marx and his associate Friedrich Engels. They came to understand that the Proletariat possessed no political expression and were, therefore, sure to channel their growing frustration into nothing other than revolution. As Europe continued to be plagued by financial decline, waves of demonstrations began to spread across various nations, first starting France and then later moving to Germany, Austria, Hungary, Poland, and Italy. In France, the authorities opened National Workshops to help encourage people to resume their labor positions. The outcome of this was that a significant and quick employment rate that, eventually, even the government could no longer contain and provide for, therefore eventually leading to the abolishment of these unsuccessful workshops.[9]

The fundamental purpose of The Communist Manifesto was to paint a brutal depiction of the factory owners and, simultaneously, it calls for a proletarian uprising, which would revolve around the removal of private property and establish a government that has total control over industrialization. Marxism was regarded as the dominant ideology, stimulated by using emotional propaganda that was based on the injustices suffered at the hands of the barbaric bourgeoisie. The original slogans of the revolution rhetoric originated from some of the famous passages of The Communist Manifesto which greatly appeal the passionate belief of its people. For example, a famous quote is that which preaches that "The proletarians don't have anything to lose however their chains. They have the world to win. Running Men of All Nations, Unite!"  (77, Marx).[10] The Communist Manifesto depicts the Marxist perspective of historical events, and it gives the reader a look at the development and the changes that occurred as a result of the social changes which came to affect class consciousness. In the opening passage of the book, Marx discusses the various developments of human civilization, and he states that human society is dictated by two forms of class rule, namely that of the "haves" and the "haves not." In the Manifesto, the "haves" are described by Marx as those who hold powers and are the "dominant" figures of the community whereas the "haves not" are those who lack power and are subservient to those above them in this hierarchy of power. According to his belief, the antagonistic relationship of only because the "rules will always continue to exploit the ruled." Marx also says that human affair is vigorous and ever-changing, meaning that change is inevitable and is a necessary process for the development of humanity. Following this struggle, history directly becomes affected by new changes, and he states that even within the alteration of time there is also advancement, therefore making history both "dynamic and progressive." In his Manifesto, Marx provides examples to support his claims regarding the notion of class segregation as well as his theories regarding human history. In addition, he compares the impact of the Industrial Revolution to the similar events occurring during Ancient times. And how the concept of "Masters" and "Slaves" have been present throughout history, up to the Medieval times, where the two contrasting classes were once known as "Feudal" and "Workers". Marx also expresses his opinion about the "elimination of private property" and insists that this system is the root of all oppression and is the reason for the hostilities between the two groups. Consequently, Marx suggests that to evade clashes between the two groups, private property must be confiscated and ultimately ruled by the state.[11]         

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