Questions for Boyer article

  • What were the primary economic, social and/or political problems in the city of Manchester, England in the 1840s?
  • What did Marx and Engels believe would happen in England because of the Industrial Revolution’s impact on man and how were they wrong?
  • Why is it necessary for Communists to call for a worker’s revolution, if they believe that such a revolution is inevitable?
  • What do Marx and Engels mean by abolition of private property and how do they answer the various refutations of this program?

5 thoughts on “Questions for Boyer article

  1. Lydia Simrayh

    Engels complained about the slums and the poor housing for the working classes. Most of the cities in the earlier 40s had serious problems and Manchester, England was particularly hard. The immediate social consequences of the Industrial Revolution were increased hardship for the working classes. Most of them lived and worked under appalling conditions and during this time, the population was changing significantly. As new cities grew, people were facing tremendous political and social problems because the living conditions in the industrial cities were very poor. There were problems with water, garbage disposal, and housing was poorly constructed and unhealthy. The middle and upper classes moved out of the city centers. The working conditions were poor as well and wages were very low. It was hard for people to support their families.

  2. Lydia Simrayh

    Marx and Engels believed that the industrial revolution marked one of the inevitable stages of history. That is that it would be superseded by a proletarian revolution, which would mark the transition from capitalism to communism. Both saw industrialization as negative because it increased the exploitation of the workers, but as a positive because it would cause a communist revolution. Also, they believed the positives would lead the workers to discover their class-consciousness and this would ultimately cause them to unite. They believed that the working class were deprived of their fair share by those at the top and predicted an end to class divisions. However, Marx was wrong about change and how capitalism would develop. The capitalism that he thought would collapse under its own contradictions is not one of today. Instead of the proletariat increasing in size, it decreased and the majority’s conditions improved over time.

  3. Maggie VZ

    What did Marx and Engels believe would happen in England because of the Industrial Revolution’s impact on man and how were they wrong?

    Marx and Engels thought that the industrial revolution would lead to only two great classes — the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. They thought that the bourgeoisie would gain political control and then put an end to all feudal and patriarchal relationships between employers and workers — the only relationship between people would be self-interest and cash payment. They thought that the proletariate were viewed by the bourgeoisie only as an extension of the machine who lie only as long as they can find work. They also said that the conditions of the proletariat will continually decrease until war breaks out and the proletariat will overthrow the bourgeoisie.

    Marx and Engels were wrong because they based their data on the town of Manchester, England (where Engels grew up). However, Manchester was not typical or representative of England at the time. Thus, things were not as bad as Marx and Engels thought, and so the reality was not as harsh as they thought it would be. There was not the development of only two distinct and separate social classes. This meant that their predictions based upon these two social classes were also incorrect. This is an example of how a thinkers own biases can cause theories to go astray.

  4. Elisabeth Miller

    What do Marx and Engels mean by abolition of private property and how do they answer the various refutations of this program?

    When Marx and Engels declare that there needs to be an abolition of private property they are not restricting it to land only. In this context, private property means social things that the bourgeoisie has taken away in order to make it their own. This includes, but is not limited to, factories, mansions, and any luxury items. Throughout Section II Marx and Engels iterate that the distinguishing feature of Communism is not the abolition of general property, but the abolition of bourgeoise property. They refute the different arguments by insisting that the purpose of wealth is to meet human needs. When this is disregarded, something needs to be done to change it, which in this case, would be the abolition of private property. There is no need to abolish the property of the artisans and of the small peasants, for their property is out of necessity and survival. They do not mean to abolish the “personal appropriation of the products of labor,” but rather abolish the idea that the laborer lives only to increase capital. No single class should have control over society’s wealth, and the laborer should not be seen as pack mule, for lack of a better term. In summary, the needs of society trump personal ambitions.

  5. Alex Morales

    The economic social and political problems that arose in the city of Manchester sprung out of of the development of industrial capitalism. There are two classes, which emerged out of the new development, and they were the  were the bourgeoisie and the proletariat.The proletariat was the laborer, and that person was seen as interchangeable. The process of the proletariat losing their voice was not far off because the machines took over their jobs, and wages went down. The Bourgeoisie also obtained political dominance for the same reason, which only allowed for their opinions to be held in parliament. The middle-class seemed irrelevant. It particularly difficult for the middle-class person to live a comfortable lifestyle, and what made it even worse was that they didn’t have anyone advocating for theme. They essentially weren’t considered as people to the Bourgeoisie, but rather as laborers that pushed their business forward. The side effects were evident when it became noticeable that the proletariat communities were living in poor conditions.

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