The Communist Movement

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“Every form of society has been based, as we have already seen, on the antagonism of oppressing and oppressed classes.”1 It is from this class antagonism that the communist movement tried to break away from. Karl Marx saw the proletariat as the most oppressed class and in his efforts to remedy this, the idea of communism was born. In the beginning it was the feudal lords who owned the land that subjugated the serfs. When the feudal system crumpled and fell it was the bourgeois who picked up the pieces and the capitalist system was created to fill the void. But rather than freeing the serfs from exploitation nothing changed it was only the masters who changed. Capitalism “provided, incontrovertibly, the disastrous effects of machinery and division of labour; the concentration of capital and land in a few hands; over-production and crises; it pointed out the inventible ruin of the petty bourgeois and peasant, the misery of the proletariat, the anarchy in production, the crying inequality in the distribution of wealth, the industrial war of extermination between nations, the dissolution of old moral bonds, of the old family relations, of the old nationalities”2 It was the bourgeois who bought the factories, the printing presses, and the other means of production who in turn subjugated the working class for their own benefit. It is to this aim which communism strived, to take back the means of production for the working class, the proletariat. “All previous historical movements were movements of minorities, or in the interests of minorities. The proletarian movement is the self-conscious, independent movement of the immense majority.”3 This communist movement would have no national identity or interest group it was a movement for the whole proletariat. This movement however could not succeed without a revolution. The bourgeois would never allow this movement to be a peaceful one.

In the beginning the proletariat was a collection of scattered clusters of...
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