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Basics of the Communist Manifesto

Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto was most appealing to and revolutionary for the industrial workers of 1848 (and those to come after that time). The call for unification of the proletariat and the abolishment of the Bourgeoisie was an urgent one during a time of rapid progress in all aspects of industrial life. This urgency of The Communist Manifesto and the desire for change of political ideologies (to match the exponential rate of progress of wealth and industry) created not only a spate of revolutions, but a long-lasting change in political ideas for industrialized European nations. The Communist Manifesto created a sense of unity and class awareness throughout the proletariat, thus they were able to recognize their power politically, socially and economically.
Naturally, with the sudden rise of industry (particularly in England) other sectors of the European economy were affected. Cottage industries were put out of business by competition from manufactured goods and agricultural workers migrated to the cities. Not only did the farming economy change drastically, but the urban setting where migrants came for employment expanded rapidly. These changes in labor practices and the economic landscape as a whole were most unsettling and unfair for the industrial workers of the 1840’s. Conditions were often poor and a very distinct line was drawn between rich and poor, factor owner and factory laborer.
The oppressed industrial working classes, or proletariat in 1845, according to Fredrick Engles existed as a piece of capital for the use of which the manufacturer pays interest under the name of wages. They worked grueling hours, endured beatings from factory managers, were often ill as a result of working conditions, and were paid enough for only the most meager existence. Marx’s vision of Communist society offers the depraved with the hopeful message that “in Communist society, accumulated labor is but a means to widen, to enrich, to…

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