Marx's Concept of Man

By Karl Marx; Erich Fromm et al. | Go to book overview

First Manuscript

ALIENATED LABOR

(XXII) We have begun from the presuppositions of political economy. We have accepted its terminology and its laws. We presupposed private property, the separation of labor, capital and land, as also of wages, profit and rent, the division of labor, competition, the concept of exchange value, etc. From political economy itself, in its own words, we have shown that the worker sinks to the level of a commodity, and to a most miserable commodity; that the misery of the worker increases with the power and volume of his production; that the necessary result of competition is the accumulation of capital in a few hands, and thus a restoration of monopoly in a more terrible form; and finally that the distinction between capitalist and landlord, and between agricultural laborer and industrial worker, must disappear and the whole of society divide into the two classes of property owners and propertyless workers.

Political economy begins with the fact of private property; it does not explain it. It conceives the material process of private property, as this occurs in reality, in general and abstract formulas which then serve it as laws. It does not comprehend these laws; that is, it does not show how they arise out of the nature of private property. Political economy provides no explanation of the basis of the distinction of labor from capital, of capital from land. When, for example, the relation of wages to profits is defined, this is explained in terms of the interests of capitalists; in other words, what should

-93-

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Marx's Concept of Man
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface v
  • Contents xi
  • 1 - The Falsification of Marx's Concepts 1
  • 2 - Marx's Historical Materialism 8
  • 3 - The Problem of Consciousness, Social Structure 20
  • 4 - The Nature of Man 25
  • 5 - Alienation 44
  • 6 - Marx's Concept of Socialism 59
  • 7 - The Continuity in Marx's Thought 70
  • 8 - Marx the Man 80
  • Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts 85
  • Translator's Notes 87
  • Preface to Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts 90
  • First Manuscript 93
  • Second Manuscript 110
  • Third Manuscript 119
  • From German Ideology 197
  • Preface to a Contribution to the Karl Marx Critique of Political Economy 217
  • From Marx's "Introduction to the Critique of Hegel's Philosophy of Law. Critique of Religion" 220
  • Reminiscences of Marx 221
  • Jenny Marx to Joseph Weydemeyer 242
  • Karl Marx 248
  • Confession 257
  • Karl Marx's Funeral 258
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