Communist Manifesto Essay

1515 words - 7 pages

During the 19th century, Europe faced a transition from its Feudal system to a newly born capitalism. The decline of the feudal system was caused by several political uprising. These revolutions gave way for the birth of different political ideologies, such as liberalism, radicalism, and socialism (among others). This new era set the stage for several changes in Europe. Most notably, the industrialization and urbanization of Europe. Even though the industrial revolution had both positive and negative impacts on Europe, it was problematic as it established new social classes defined by the means of wealth. As a consequence to the industrial revolution, Marx and Engels, who held socialist ...view middle of the document...

, 487). Thus, the demand for change was rising.
A wave of political movements were unleashed in Europe calling for the demise of this hated Feudal system. The people were furious, due to the hardships they faced, so they forcefully demanded political representation and more rights. In 1830, France, the revolution rose against the monarchy under Louis XVIII and destroyed it. The French Revolution changed the course of history and spread liberal ideas to other nations that emphasized freedom and individual rights of people. Thus, it became the catalyst that initiated similar movements throughout the region, such as in Belgium, Poland, and Russia (Cole, et al., 489). It is important to add that social and political changes were not enough. These revolutions also demanded economic reforms that were much needed.
These uprisings were significant in history, as they set the stage for modern government and modern economy. For instance, the revolution in Russia resulted in some positive changes, such as decreasing the influence of the nobility on the state, building railroads, and increasing production. This led to the beginning of a new age: The Industrial age. The industrial revolution brought upon modernization and more advanced technology (inventions). Many factories were built for the mass production of goods. Trading also advanced and led to the growth of capital money. Laborers were in high demand to work in factories. This led to urbanization as hundreds of thousands of peasants moved to the cities to work in factories. As a result to these changed, many European countries became influential economic powers in the world.
The industrial age also brought negative changes as it split countries into clashing social classes. It created a hierarchy based on wealth, putting business owners at the top, and wage earning workers on the bottom. This was extremely problematic because it did not solve the inherited issues found in the feudal system, but simply led to a new era of instability, problems and struggle. People were still in desperation. Workers had to work for long hours under horrible conditions every day. They were not paid living wages. Thus, with all this intense labor, they still lived in poverty. Workers did not own any property even though they were the majority of the population. On the other hand, the business owners were only 1% of the population, and they held all the wealth in their hands. Furthermore, workers were not allowed to assemble in unions, and any secret groups that formed were too weak to make major changes. As a result to this problematic social structure and economic issues, several political ideologies emerged making different hypothesis regarding solutions for the situation. The socialist ideas of Marx and Engels outlined in their book “The Communist Manifesto”, attacked capitalism as a whole.
Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels ideas were one of the most significant ideas produced as a result to the industrial age. They...

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