Karl Marx And Locke Labor: Property?
Bard College Chilton - FYSem
Marx/Locke; Labor <-> Property?
Communism has certainly been through its dramatic rises and falls throughout the last century and a half, but likely its greatest power was held in the writings of Karl Marx. Marx used economic and sociopolitical investigation to critique and investigate both the systematic evolution of the capitalist system and the role of class struggle in economy. This is especially demonstrated in his text The Communist Manifesto. His ideas were praised by many as a new horizon of political thought and condemned by many, often because they contradicted much of the fundamental European philosophy of the previous thousands of years. One of the key issues which Marx …show more content…
He does not bother himself in this respect with economic logistics or oppressive systems; he is purely concerned with the Right. The Right to one’s own body is how he begins: Locke believed that “God gave the world to Adam, and his posterity in common” (Locke 5.25) and “therein, is given to men for the support and comfort of their being” (Locke 5.26). No one has an inherent private domain because they are in their natural state. However, therefore there must, Locke argues, exist a means by which one may acquire property before it is used by any individual. This is possible via agency of one’s body - for “every man has a property in his own person” (Locke 5.27). When that individual adds their labor to the earth or to its produce in some fashion, they are mixing their property (labor is work of the body, therefore property) with the physical thing and enforces their right tot the object upon it. When a person plows a field on the Earth than the field becomes his property because it is then his responsibly, and therefore all the fruits and general product of that land. Whatever someone adds their labor to becomes private property for their exclusive …show more content…
Overwhelmingly unlike Marx, in Locke 's eyes, the main purpose of government is to protect individual’s private property and their right to it. In a state of nature there is no way for each individual to ensure that their property remains safe from every one else, so when conflict over private property starts to occur the people come together and use to their reason to script a social contract that will protect their property. Locke also says that before the introduction of private property, men lived in an egalitarian state of nature, but with the introduction of private property it caused a hierarchy to form. It is a consequence of private property that people are forced to introduce a contract between the members, therefore crafting a