Evaluating Wealth and Poverty: Marx's 'Communist Manifesto' and Carnegie's 'The Gospel of Wealth'
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Evaluating Wealth and Poverty: Marx and Carnegie
Criticism of the economy can differ dramatically. Many might have very polar opposite ideas as to what needs to be done in order to better provide for a society's economic well-being. This is definitely the case between Karl Marx and Andrew Carnegie. Despite some basic similarities regarding the need for economic change, Marx's "Communist Manifesto" and Carnegie's "The Gospel of Wealth" prove incredibly different in how they claim to provide real solutions for economic problems. Marx demands that the people take back control of the means of production and redistribute wealth to all; while Carnegie insists that only an elite few in a society are responsible enough for handling the wealth and should remain in absolute control of it, even when determining how it is being redistributed into the society.
There are still some similarities that these very different essays have in common. For one, they are both trying to deal with rationalizing a new way of life in an incredibly modern world. Both Marx and Carnegie understand that the agricultural mode of life and the economic practices that went with it were out of date at the time the authors were writing. Carnegie writes, "the conditions of human life have not only been changed, but revolutionized, within the past few hundred years" (Carnegie, 1). Both he and Marx understand that society has been dramatically revolutionized, and that a change is needed to accommodate that change