200th Birth Anniversary of Karl Marx

Deported Again From Germany

MARX saw without illusion the fact that the victories of the counter-revolution had changed the relation of forces significantly in favour of feudal reaction. In Prussia and Austria, the two most important German states the ruling circles set out “by the grace of god” to re-establish the pre-revolutionary situation. But despite the seriousness of the situation, Marx and his comrades had no intention of giving up the battle.

Leader of Revolutionary and Democratic Forces

MARX had founded Neue Rheinsche Zeitung as an “Organ of Democracy”, but as Engels said, he fought for a democratic line “that emphasized the specifically proletarian character in everything, which it could not as yet inscribe on its banner.” The revolutionary-democratic programme of the paper was for the destruction of the Prussian and Austrian States as the most important bulwark of reaction, in order to unite all Germany in a democratic republic.

Life and Work of Karl Marx – X: Founding of a New Paper

COLOGNE, where Marx and Engels arrived on April 11, 1848, was not an accidental choice. The capital of the industrially most advanced Rhine Province had also become a centre of the young working class movement. Here there was a strong organisation of the Communist League. Marx had already worked in Cologne as the Editor-in-chief of the Rheinische Zeitung in 1842-43 and could count on many friends and comrades who shared his views.

The movements of 1848

The appearance of the Manifesto of the Communist party, written by Marx and Engels, February 1848, coincided with the outbreak of the revolution in Europe.

The revolution began in France on February 22-24, the bankers’ king, Louis Philippe, was dethroned and a republic proclaimed. The first reports of the revolution reached Marx while he was in Brussels. On behalf of the Brussels Democratic Association, Marx warmly greeted France’s Republican Government.

Manifesto of the Communist Party

Mid-19th Century was a period of vigorous development of capitalism. The bourgeoisie looked to the future with great optimism; they believed that their dominion would last for ever and that capitalist private property was something permanent. The Communist utopias that preceded Communism were regarded by the ruling classes as merely an “apparition” which could be exorcised with the help of the police.

Creation of the Proletarian Party

MARX, in the Poverty of Philosophy, clearly set forth the principles of his theory of social history. “The hand mill gives you society with the feudal lord; the steam mill, society with the industrial capitalist,” he wrote, examining the dialectical interaction of the productive forces and production relations. Prospects were opened before the reader for the revolutionary struggle of the working class and all working people.

Life and Work of Karl Marx – V: The New World Outlook

MEANWHILE, the reactionary Prussian government which had kept Marx’s activities in Paris under close observation from the first day on, succeeded in January 1845 in getting the French authorities to expel him. He was ordered to leave Paris within 24 hours, and to be out of France in the shortest possible time. When the liberal press protested against this outrageous act, the French Government offered to let him stay on in Paris if he withdraw from all anti-Prussian agitation. Marx’s answer was to leave France.

From Revolutionary Democrat to Communist

UNDER Marx’s editorship, the Rheinische Zeitung soon began to flourish. The Prussian authorities imposed strict censorship on the paper and demanded that it change its tune. For a while the paper, before publication, had to be submitted daily to the Government President for his approval. The intellectual level of the Prussian censor in Cologne – very reminiscent of our own censors of the Emergency period – was such that he struck out a notice for Dante’s Divine Comedy saying that it was impermissible to mix comedy with divine things.


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