Marx and Lenin Thinkers Evaluation

Document Type:Thesis

Subject Area:Politics

Document 1

Marx was a philosopher, and a theorist, who was known for analyzing capitalist economies and political systems and criticizing what he thought where the deficiencies in these systems (Douzinas, C, & Žižek, S, 2010). He then proceeded to formulate principles for alleviating the suffering and any quality intrinsic in capitalist systems. On his side, Lenin was a politician, who was determined to implement Marx’s theories in the way he and others in Bolshevik Party saw them, in attempts to change Czarist Russia into a communist society. The writings of both Marx and Lenin did a great work in spreading the ideological and political concepts of communism. The writings highlighted the weaknesses of the capitalist system of economic production and promoted a socialist system. Both authors believed that capitalist states would come to an end, and states would be forced to develop communist systems (Douzinas, C, & Žižek, S, 2010). In this context, the wider theme exhibited in this paper is communism. Both Marx and Lenin were communist thinkers. Marx’s principle of communism emphasized on freeing the lower class from poverty and giving them a fighting chance. For Marx, an ideal society is one in which there are no classes nor states. To eliminate social classes, Marx suggested that governments should control all the means of production in a nation so that no one in the country can undo the others by making more money. During his time as the leader of the Soviet Russia, Lenin implemented several economic policies known as “War Communism” (Douzinas, C, & Žižek, S, 2010).

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Although seen as temporary measures of consolidating power, these policies were highly communist. The dominant policies involved the nationalization of all industry and manufacturing across the Soviet Russia. He fed the Red Army from the surplus gains of peasant farmers in the country. Although some elements of two thinkers’ writings may seem obsolete in the contemporary society, a significant part of their work contributes to modern political theory. These thinkers’ contributions are in the perspectives of economics, party politics, dictatorship of the proletariat, and imperialism. All these perspective are described within a wider theme of communism. Despite bearing several fundamental differences in their beliefs, Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin were political thinkers who upheld communism in all their works. Economic Views One major contribution of Marx and Lenin to modern political theory is in the context of economics.

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These thoughts by Marx challenged Lenin, who was forced to write “What is to be Done?” in attempts to improve Marx’s theory of communist revolution. In this effort to refine Marx’s theory of communist revolution, Lenin came up with his own ideological and philosophical concepts. With his writings aimed at improving Marx’s theory, Lenin considered the necessary steps that would be taken to bring about a communist revolution in less developed countries without having to wait for too long. Marx and Lenin’s thoughts on communist revolutions regarding economics are relevant in modern political theory in the way contemporary countries and governments are organized. As stated by (Kubalkova, V & Cruickshank, A, 2015), capitalism is in crisis across the world. He believed that instilling a revolutionary state of mind in the working classes required the formation of professionally organized political parties.

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These parties would facilitate the transition of the working classes from the capitalist trade-union mindset. This thinking led Lenin to form the Bolshevik Party, which took over power in Russia in 1917. In relation to the modern political theory, Marx implies that the working class will naturally become conscious of their classes and develop a need to overthrow the bourgeoisie. His thoughts on the workers are optimistic as he believes they will naturally develop consciousness of their classes and spontaneously demand a revolution. Being the leader of this party, Lenin assumed that he knew what was best for the workers. Even after he died, the dictatorship of the communist party continued, and his successor, Josef Stalin, even took it further by advancing a totalitarian dictatorship. Imperialism Lastly, Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin’ thoughts also contribute to modern political policy from the perspective of imperialism.

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Marx believed that the proletarian revolution was bound to happen in any capitalist nation, as the ruling governments will be overcome by workers and forced to become communists. For Marx, proletarian revolution would spontaneously occur in any capitalist state without the need to direct the workers to revolt against the bourgeoisie. Conclusion Despite bearing several fundamental differences in their beliefs, Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin were political thinkers who upheld communism in all their works. Marx is widely regarded as the “father of communism. ” His writings laid a foundation for other scholars and thinkers to comprehensively understand the concepts of communism and capitalism. Lenin accepted most of Marx’s thoughts without alteration. He declared himself a Marxist in 1889. The two thinkers also differed on the aspect of dictatorship of the proletariat where Marx believed in the political power of the proletariat while Lenin perpetrated totalitarian dictatorship with absolute powers.

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The authors also held slightly divergent viewpoints on imperialism. References Brewer, A. Marxist theories of imperialism: a critical survey. Routledge. Oxford University Press on Demand.

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