Communist Manifesto

Alienation in Marx and Engels' Communist Manifesto College

Alienation is a core aspect of Marxist thinking. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels argue in The Communist Manifesto that capitalism is the cause alienation. The theory is that the estrangement, or alienation, of people, is a consequence of living in a society with social classes. Social classes lead humans to be separated from each other and ultimately from themselves. Marx and Engels argue that capitalism causes workers to be alienated from others due to class struggle, their act of producing and from the human species. Throughout The Communist Manifesto, it is shown that capitalism worsens the alienation of the worker from each of these aspects. As communism offers a unity between workers, alienation, for Marx and Engels, is an effect of capitalism and its exploitation of the Proletariat and communism is the solution that they offer.

The Communist Manifesto writes, “the history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles” (Marx & Engels, The Communist Manifesto 10). The idea of class is a struggle for anyone who is being oppressed by the confines of social class. This struggle is what has formed the society that Marx and Engels live in. The authors argue that history is a constant battle, “…now open...

Join Now to View Premium Content

GradeSaver provides access to 839 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 6256 literature essays, 1739 sample college application essays, 251 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.

Join Now

Already a member? Log in