Marx Karl 1818 - 1883 (65)

Revolutions are the locomotives of history.


Karl Heinrich Marx was a German philosopher, sociologist, journalist, historian, he is considered the founder of communism. He was born in Trier, Prussia, on May 5, 1818, to a progressive family of Jewish rabbis, but his father was a lawyer and had embraced Christianity (Lutheranism) in order to have a better career. Karl was an excellent student, he began to study law at the University of Bonn in 1835, but because of his distractions, his father forced him to move to the University of Berlin where - to the disappointment of those who wanted him a lawyer - he turned to philosophy. (he wrote his dissertation on Epicurus) and joined a circle of students known as the young Hegelians.

Karl moved to Bonn after his studies to become a university professor, but the government's reactionary policy towards people in his circle forced him to abandon the idea. In 1842 he published a radical German newspaper which ceased to operate in 1843 due to frictions with government censorship. He went to France, where he met Friedrich Engels, who brought him into contact with the question of the working class and the economy. Marx was expelled from Paris for his writings, and together with Engels they settled in Brussels. There they wrote 'German Ideology', a critical study of Hegel's philosophy and later 'The Misery of Philosophy'. Those two works formed the basis of the forthcoming 'Communist Manifesto', first published in 1848. That year in Europe broke out great revolutions. The labor movement seized power from King Philip of France and called on Marx to return to Paris. When the workers' government collapsed in 1849, Marx was forced to leave again, finding refuge in liberal London, where he was forced to remain until his death. In London he was an envoy of the New York Tribune, a key figure in the founding of the International Labor Union, later called the 'First Socialist International'; he was devoted to historical (such as Bonaparte biography) and theoretical works, the most famous of which is' The Capital', the first volume of which was published in 1867.

At the age of 25, Marx married 29-year-old Baroness Jenny von Westfalen. Her family did not want him, as she was of Jewish descent, unemployed, penniless, only her mother and a few friends attended the wedding. The well-educated baroness will have a difficult life with him. Marx never had a steady job, and his official profession was a journalist - publisher of revolutionary publications, which brought him no profit, especially since he was usually stamped with the accusation of incitement to a standstill. In France, Germany, Belgium and Switzerland he was unwanted and used pseudonyms to deceive the authorities. The life of an exile, persecuted and destitute will have his family as the main victims. Especially after 1850, poverty knocked on their door for good. In 1851 Jenny, ill and pregnant, traveled to the Netherlands to beg for money from her uncle Leon Phillips (owner of Philips electrical appliances). He will refuse her because her husband incites the workers against him. During her absence, it is probable that Karl had a son with their maid, whom they adopted. Despite his misery, Karl refused to give up his petty bourgeois habits and was always proud that he had married a baroness. As he wrote in a letter to Engels in 1865 when he moved to a mansion in north London: "I can not go out because I have given my coat to the pawnshop and because spies and creditors are watching. "

Of their 7 children, only 3 managed to become adults, the rest died due to poor living conditions. His faithful wife Jenny died in December 1881; He died 15 months later, after catching a cold that became bronchitis. He died stateless and destitute; at his funeral there were not more than fifteen people.