Individualism In The Communist Manifesto, By Karl Marx

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In the Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx attempts to educate the general public on the communist agenda that emerged in the 19th century. He proposes an arguably attractive explanation to the timeless class struggle in human history, explaining that the laboring proletariat class will eventually rise to political power and eliminate future class division and oppression through the seizure of property ownership. In essence, Marx favors the concept of the unity of the whole, whereas John Stuart Mill in On Liberty argues for the value of the individual and their liberties of thought, discussion, and action. In this essay I will defend Mill in justifying the utilitarian favorability of individuality and liberty rights, because prioritizing communal …show more content…
Karl Marx adamantly believed in the power of a classless society. The prerequisites to implementing such a system, however, include considerable regulations on property, economic activity, and other aspects of civilization that John Stuart Mill was a proponent of de-regulating. Marx argued, “[The fall of the bourgeoisie] and the victory of the proletariat is inevitable,” (80) essentially claiming that he believed the forces of the economy would naturally move towards communism. In a society where all citizens are treated equally and given the same amount despite what they put in, the economy will collapse. There is no force of self-interest to incentivize the population to push forward. The state will plateau, fall behind, and eventually fail without the liberties that Mill outlined as beneficial to the state. All citizens will be forced to conform to the mainstream opinion and there will be neither growth nor any critical challenging of the popular opinion that Mill established was necessary for society to progress. Alexis de Tocqueville speaks of the tyranny of the majority when warning, “liberty is endangered when this power finds no obstacle which can retard its course,” (128) and that tyrannical majority is simply the superior social power that gives itself control over

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