Does The Communist Manifesto address a universal audience? Is it relevant to the history of world civilizations? Or is it only relevant to European history?
The Communist Manifesto addresses the existence of class struggles in the society. It discusses the crisis that would result from capitalism and therefore, its historical importance cannot be ignored. It foreshadows the overthrowing of capitalism by socialism and ultimately by communism. Communist Manifesto is not only relevant to the European history but also addresses a universal audience.
The document can be referred to assess the historical viewpoint concerning the capitalist system and relate its impact on different civilizations. Marx not only criticizes but also portrays the strengths of socialism. This has influenced a number of historians and other scholars to form their own opinions regarding the system. Karl Marx gave birth to communism, which is an ideal society where resources are distributed evenly such that no classes could exist, a society where the rich and poor are equal. He addresses its ideologies and less on its implementation. It portrays the revolutionary history where the class system, is overthrown and a global market is created where people can socially interact. However, in my opinion, this global market or what is referred as free trade has facilitated globalized capitalism, which is marked by transfer of production, financial/economic crisis, technological shifts, food insecurity and job crisis. The document therefore, offers insight to the crisis facing a society. In the twenty first century, overproduction as a result of globalization has led many nations into deep economic crisis.
Historical experiences such as Black Death which hit medieval England in the 14th century chiefly portray the significance of the Communist Manifesto. The plague made a distinction between the central & late middle ages. The plague killed millions of peasant workers in Europe and many of then demarcated creating shortage of labor force. Therefore production such that it could not sustain the rich since the profits were minimal hence the society fell into deeper economic, political and social crisis shortly after the Black Death. The few peasants that were left could demand higher wages and therefore, the Feudal System was introduced to keep them in their lands and to restrict their movement. This angered the peasants and eventually led to the Peasants Revolt of 1381. Moreover, decolonization, which involved gain of independence by African nations from the colonists, was also an indication of revolt since the colonists subjugated the natives for years. The imperial governments during the post war era faced economic constrains since its production was minimal and therefore, could not sustain their political command in these nations.
The Communist Manifesto is a guidebook for any society that wants to do away with capitalism where the majorities, who are poor, are subjugated by the few rich whose aim is to maximize profits. Currently, this has taken various forms such as internationalization of trade where there have emerged multinational corporations that are owned by the rich. These invade the developing countries and overtake the means of production to maximize profits. The multinationals suppress the small upcoming industries in the nation in which they operate, utilize cheap labor from these nations, and even influence the policy making of the nation to favor their operations and to secure their existence and that of their property. Moreover, with globalization, many developed nations import cheap labor from the developing nations for low wages and poor working conditions. Therefore, the capitalist society that is criticized by Karl Marx in the communist manifesto is still relevance today now that capitalism has taken different forms. In conclusion, the document not only address Europe but also other parts of the world, with current examples of communist societies like Vietnam and more so, china, which is currently rising as a leading economic power.
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