Karl Marx 's Influence On Society

1423 WordsMay 10, 20176 Pages
Karl Marx may be regarded as one of the most influential thinkers and his views on how society functions have shaped the development of socialist and economic theories. Political philosophers have developed a variety of enlightened ideologies depicting how governments and societies are organized over the course of history. Marx’s influence by Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel would lead to Marx’s view of history known as historical materialism, “Life is not determined by consciousness, but consciousness by life” (Marx, Engels & Arthur, 2001 p. 69). Marx argued the existence of human society pushed on productions, and in turn, productions shapes the ideas of humans. Hegel possessed an idealistic view on how the world functions, idealism claims…show more content…
Marx was greatly influenced by one of the most influential philosophers of modern time, Immanuel Kant. Like Hegel, Immanuel Kant promoted idealism. As the most vehement anti­egoist through history, Kant believed in the rejection of physical desires in any capacity and lived a life congruent with one’s duties and moral responsibilities in life. He executed this selfless principle by consistently practicing selfless service and virtue, never choosing personal happiness over others. Therefore, Kant vigorously rejects any type of materialism because he does not think anything morally inclined could arise from seeking personal gain. As a result of this philosophy, Marxism consists of helping the impoverished working class follows the proper moral code laid out by Kant to perform an action because it is right. Hence why Marx wrote the Communist Manifesto, which encouraged movement away from capitalism. Marx 's views were often contrary to Hegel’s, primarily because Marx believed society would improve by the work of man and material possessions are what drives human development rather than an idealistic view where ideas were the driving source of development. As stated in The German Ideology, “What they are, therefore, coincides with their production, both with what they produce and with how they produce. The nature of individuals thus depends on the material conditions determining their production" (Marx, Engels & Arthur, 2001 p. 62). This quote depicts the ability of man
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