Talk:Karl Marx/Archive 8

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Archive 7 Archive 8 Archive 9

Anarchist being led by Bakunin?

I will ask not to write disinformation, mainly of the fact that somebody wrote that Karl Marx had a big struggle against the anarchist, who were LED by Michail Bakunin. It is true that Marx and Bakunin had different opinions on the Communist/Collectivist philosophy and that the Authority of Marx expelled the anarchists from the First International, but it is not true that the anarchists were led by Bakunin. His great degree in oratory and his god eloquence made him more influent, even maybe in some occasions authoritarian, but that doesn't makes him the LEADER of the rest of the Anarchist Communists. If somebody admire Michail Bakunin that is definitely not the reason of spreading disinformation. Besides, the main ideology of Anarchists is the anti - authoritarianism, which by default discards the paragraph in which it says that Michail Bakunin was the leader of the anarchists. I apply for it to be changed, as soon as possible. Thank you. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:16, 15 November 2010 (UTC)

A fair point: I've Replaced 'led by' Bakunin' with 'centered around' Bakunin', which is probably more accurate, though Wikipedia isn't required to accept anarchist ideology (or any other) as being a reliable source over issues like this. AndyTheGrump (talk) 23:32, 16 November 2010 (UTC)


Can't we work the criticism of Marx into the article? I have always favoured that as opposed to a criticism section, some of the better articles fit criticism into the whole. ValenShephard (talk) 23:10, 29 August 2010 (UTC)

I saw this at an article and its very appropriate here:

Q6: Why isn't there a criticisms/controversies section?[hide] A6: Because a section dedicated to criticisms and controversies is no more appropriate than a section dedicated solely to praise and is an indication of a poorly written article. Criticisms/controversies/praises should be worked into the existing prose of the article, per the Criticism essay.

That is how we should work at this article, based on this principle. ValenShephard (talk) 23:16, 29 August 2010 (UTC)

Actually the criticism section seems to be composed mostly of criticism of Marxism, not of Marx himself. I think writing it into the text is a great idea. ·Maunus·ƛ· 23:25, 29 August 2010 (UTC)
You are right on that. Any criticisms not to do with Marx himself should be removed (or if useful and appropriate, moved into the Marxism article) and the rest should be incorporated into the text as is standard and desirable. If some more support comes in, I'll start on this task soon. Thanks for your fast reply. ValenShephard (talk) 23:28, 29 August 2010 (UTC)
And also, as has been mentioned before in this talk, I think we should remove some of the references to Marxism as an ideology outside of its own section (Marx's Thought) especially when its implications are outside of his control, such as what happened in the Soviet Union. What do we think? ValenShephard (talk) 09:39, 3 September 2010 (UTC)
What do you mean criticisms of Marx himself. Are you saying that only personal criticisms of Marx should be included in this article or that criticism of people after Marx shouldn't be included? --Schwindtd (talk) 20:05, 3 September 2010 (UTC)
I am saying that criticisms of Marx' ideas do not really belong in a biography, but in an article about those ideas such as our article on Marxism. Now, forexample the anti-semite issue is more about his person than about his system of thought and does belong here - criticism of marxism as an ideology including how it has been implemented does not belong in the biography I think.·Maunus·ƛ· 20:09, 3 September 2010 (UTC)
Quite right, any criticisms of Marxism belong in the article on Marxism. I am not sure that many of our biography articles have "criticisms" sections. Slrubenstein | Talk 20:37, 3 September 2010 (UTC)
I agree with both ValenShepard and Maunus above. This article should deal with personal criticism, theoretical criticism should go in the Marxism or (more appropriately) Criticism of Marxism article.   Redthoreau -- (talk) 20:38, 3 September 2010 (UTC)
Alright then, we seem to be in agreement. I'll start work on this in the next few days. If you disagree with any of my cuts (as I think it will be a few thousand characters) please let me know. ValenShephard (talk) 00:07, 4 September 2010 (UTC)
Did you remove all the anti-semitism information or incorporate it into the article? --Schwindtd (talk) 18:20, 4 September 2010 (UTC)
Its at the end of the philosophy section, but I gave it a rewrite. I studied it a bit, here and from the Marxist archive and it turns out the work is much more complex than first appeared. Have a look and tell me what you think. ValenShephard (talk) 18:31, 4 September 2010 (UTC)
I would avoid the editorializing: "albeit clumsily written." --Schwindtd (talk) 18:36, 4 September 2010 (UTC)
That is a very close paraphrase of the actual defense made of the essay in that source I gave. You can remove it if you want, I didnt want to write something that seemed overly positive towards the essay, because some virulent individuals think its a hotbed of hateful antisemitism, even if thats not really true. I didnt want to insult their sensibilities.. : D ValenShephard (talk) 18:38, 4 September 2010 (UTC)
You might be able to google book the following:
David McLellan, Karl Marx: His Life and Thought (New York:Harper & Row, 1973), p. 4
Gertrude Himmelfarb, "The Real Marx," in Commentary (April 1985), pp. 37-43 and "Letter" (August 1985).
These books talk more about his statements on Judaism. Quote from Todd Bucholz, New Ideas from Dead Economists: "Scholars may debate whether he was really anti-Semitic. But undoubtedly Karl Marx uttered numerous venomous insults." Some more sources might be more illuminating when it comes to the complex character of Marx. --Schwindtd (talk) 18:43, 4 September 2010 (UTC)
Venemous insults? Oh dear. Sounds weak. Check out the page On the Jewish Question and you will see much better quotations and sources discussing the essay. Most academics seem to agree, that at worst, he was representing views common of the time, and at best that he was actually defending Judaism. Mostly, he was using euthemism to insult and mess around his rival. If you actually read the thing, its on Marxist archive, you'll see its a much deeper statement about liberal values, though its quite boring. (I think its probably his least important publication) And in fact, his conclusion is that Jews should be able to maintain their identity and religion while transitioning to the city state as opposed to the monarchy. Doesn't sound too bad to me. But I am just telling you to get some background on the issue. ValenShephard (talk) 18:58, 4 September 2010 (UTC)
"The young Karl Marx: German philosophy, modern politics, and human flourishing By David Leopold" backs up what you say. You have to admit that his language is rather abusive and combative, probably because that was his style. --Schwindtd (talk) 19:25, 4 September 2010 (UTC)
From my understanding of it he was using inflammatory language as a euthemism to actually mock his rival who the essay was a rebuttal to, who was much more virulent than Marx. Overall, I don't think this essay of Marx's is that important. It is his only real work on the issue, and it was a liberal defence of Jewish culture. I think the current paragraph, with the link to the page should readers want more info, is enough. This is the writer of Das Kapital after all! Those works of his, the groundbreaking ones, not curiosities from his early career deserve their prominence. This essay of his has been used to crticise him with the anti-semitic brush in almost every anti-communist source, I don't think we need to stoop to this level here, especially when we start to understand its context. ValenShephard (talk) 19:31, 4 September 2010 (UTC)
Well we must stoop to the level of reporting the criticisms. So perhaps Marx doesn't deserve ALL the blame. As far as "euphemisms" (I think you're looking for another word) go, Marx was a pretty fiery intellectual. I don't criticize him for that. --Schwindtd (talk) 00:12, 5 September 2010 (UTC)
I was joking. But the intellectual McLellan noted that Marx's use of the word "Judentum" was actually a kind of slang for commerce or trading, maybe quite a low brow slang, but still. I find that argument convincing. The idea McLellan puts forward is that Marx was making a joke at the expense of his rival, by turning his own anti-semitism against him in a kind of ironic way. But it doesn't actually matter, I guess I am talking about it so much because its so fascinating. So Schwindtd, what do you propose should be changed about the current paragraph on Marx's essay in this article? ValenShephard (talk) 11:20, 5 September 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps the use of that slang could be included. I don't really know that much about Marx's personal life. I also have not read any of Marx's works (and I don't think I ever will). It'd probably be better if you handled the section. You seem to know more.--Schwindtd (talk) 15:02, 5 September 2010 (UTC)
Maybe its enough that people can go find out more about the essay on its page? The article is actually quite a fair one, the analyses given (including all the ones I have mentioned) are listed there. ValenShephard (talk) 16:56, 5 September 2010 (UTC)
Replying to a comment made up top, McLellan's book does not discus Marx's views on Jews and Judaism in detail on page 4 but much later in the book. I wholeheartedly agree with ValenShephard's comments and hope he is editing accordingly. Slrubenstein | Talk 12:15, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
"From my understanding of it he was using inflammatory language as a euthemism to actually mock his rival"
That is a kind of assumption that is understandably often made. However, sources like the Encyclopaedia Judaica point out that Marx expressed antagonism to Jews on a number of other occasions such as his Thesis on Feuerbach, in his articles for the New York Tribune, and in Capital. It follows that the issue is rather more complex and needs further investigation. I can see no logical reason why legitimate critique of Marx and/or his ideas and actions should be excluded from an article on Marx or Marxism. Since his comments about Jews reflect his personal views rather than those espoused by Marxists in general, I would suggest they properly belong to the Marx rather than to the Marxism article. Justus Maximus (talk) 16:01, 10 November 2010 (UTC)
Whereas anti-Semitic language in “On the Jewish Question” may arguably have been a parody on contemporary anti-Semitism, it is doubtful whether the same can be asserted in those instances where Marx uses that kind of language to attack Jewish persons he obviously disliked. As noted by Francis Wheen in his biography of Marx,
“In his later correspondence with Engels, he sprayed anti-Semitic insults at his enemies with savage glee: the German socialist Ferdinand Lasalle, a frequent victim, was described variously as the Yid, Wily Ephraim, Izzy and the Jewish Nigger. ‘It is now quite plain to me – as the shape of his head and the way his hair grows also testify – that he is descended from the negroes who accompanied Moses’ flight from Egypt, unless his mother or paternal grandmother interbred with a nigger,’ Marx wrote in 1862, discussing the ever-fascinating subject of Lassalle’s ancestry. ‘No, this blend of Jewishness and Germanness, on the other hand, and basic negroid stock, on the other, must inevitably give rise to a peculiar product. The fellow’s importunity is also niggerlike” (p. 55).
The question as to whether as suggested by the Encyclopaedia Judaica this was a case of “self-hatred” cannot be answered without a closer psychological study that is probably outside the scope of Wikipedia articles. However, the question as to why he chose to use anti-Semitic language cannot be avoided. Unless contradicted by a detailed psychological profile, a simpler explanation may be that as an assimilated Jew, Marx had absorbed some of the anti-Semitic attitudes prevalent in his time. At any rate, if mention must be made of his anti-Semitic remarks (and I believe this to be the case given that they figure in biographies), it seems improper to focus exclusively on “On the Jewish Question”. Justus Maximus (talk) 12:29, 11 November 2010 (UTC)
Anti-semitic and racialist views can be found with all mainstream writers until the Second World War, and some of the terminology used then, which is now considered offensive, were the mainstream words used. Ironically after long calling communism a Jewish movement (see: Jewish Bolshevism, they now call it anti-semitic. The book quoted btw is by a journalist, Francis Wheen, not an academic, and therefore there is no way of knowing how widespread his views are. Wheen is a signatory of the Euston Manifesto which criticized the Left for not supporting the War in Iraq. Incidentally your reference to the Jewish question is extremely offensive. TFD (talk) 15:56, 11 November 2010 (UTC)
I think you would be well advised to read some history and, above all, read my actual statements. I'm not referring to the "Jewish Question" at all but to Marx's On the Jewish Question. IMO your patent ignorance ought to disqualify you from the discussion. Justus Maximus (talk) 16:23, 11 November 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, I missed your quotes. TFD (talk) 16:52, 11 November 2010 (UTC)
I'm afraid I'm unable to accept that. If you've missed my quotes, then you based your statements and accusations on your own fantasy, did you not? That disqualifies you from taking part in the discussion. Justus Maximus (talk) 17:03, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

and Marxism isn't directly related to his work, theories vs practice Markthemac (talk) 15:43, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

Ancient Greek / Roman Law

But the Ancient Greeks had all what marx said figured out: they called it Law and law handled the struggle of the classes by law, among other things. Of course: many "kings" in foreign countries oppressed equal access to law as they needed feudalism to stay on top.

marx's prediction is mostly correct but his added conclusion of proper remedy is, simply put, not the only answer nor provably the best answer. sometimes answering something before it happens itself is a wrong idea.

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 30 November 2010

What? AndyTheGrump (talk) 22:08, 30 November 2010 (UTC)

Strange phrasing in the Career > London subsection

Reading through the biographical parts, I noticed strange phrasing like "Marx can be forgiven for not seeing . . . " I did a search and found the user that added this text and more, see Not sure how those turns of phrase should be revised, but they seem out of place and out of style. Thanks for y'alls' work on this article. -- (talk) 06:04, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

Thanks. Your point is well made and a closer look is warranted. Professor marginalia (talk) 07:10, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

informal request for comments on Commodity fetishism

Could people well-familiar with Marx's work comment on this discussion? Thanks, Slrubenstein | Talk 13:50, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from Baucham, 21 December 2010

{{edit semi-protected}} I want to add Machiavelli to his influences.

Baucham (talk) 02:19, 21 December 2010 (UTC)

Have you any evidence that he was influenced by Machiavelli? I dare say he may possibly have read the Prince, but I can't see any obvious connections. We'd need a reliable source to justify saying so. AndyTheGrump (talk) 02:26, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Once you provide a source, I would be happy to make the edit. Inka888 08:14, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Well, postmarxists like Antonio Negri/Michael Hardt and the structural marxist Louis Althusser have written a lot between the relations of Machiavelli and Marx. The serious connection is Machiavelli's materialism, because it was used by Marx to combat Hegel's idealism. Negri proposes an alternative epistemology to the the classical line "Hobbes-Rousseau-Hegel-Marx", which is basically overcoming the Hegelian dialectical, and the opening of a non-dialectical materialism, "Machiavelli-Spinoza-Marx". Machiavelli is an important piece for Marx and the postmarxist re-reading of him. You can read this thesis in their books, Negri's Empire and Althusser's essays about Machiavelli, for example Machiavelli and Us. --Baucham (talk) 00:40, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
Frankly, having attempted to read Negri's Empire, and given up after about 20 pages, I'd rather not contemplate his significance to the question. Fortunately however, I don't have to. What we need to indicate that Marx was influenced by Machiavelli is a source that says he was: i.e. one that for a start shows that Marx had read Machiavelli. What postmarxists think of the issue is beside the point. AndyTheGrump (talk) 00:55, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
Or, perhaps we could say that Negri's views may fit in the article on Marxism, or a related article, but not in the article on Marx himself? Slrubenstein | Talk 10:26, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
That would be great Slrubenstein. AndyTheGrump, I have found a letterthat "shows that Marx had read Machiavelli." This is my last attempt, so if it's not enough, ok, I understand.--Baucham (talk) 23:40, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
An interesting letter, thanks Baucham. Marx had evidently read Machiavelli then, though this refers to another work than The Prince, and I don't know whether it shows evidence of Machiavelli's 'materialism'. I think we'll need more than this to indicate 'influence', as I indicated earlier, though maybe it is out there somewhere. I'll keep my eye out for this, and perhaps ask around. (And doesn't the letter tell us a lot about the relationship between Marx and Engels - Marx had evidently been sent £5, but his letter of acknowledgement didn't arrive at the expected time - evidently Engels must have sent another letter asking why, and one wonders whether perhaps Marx's attempt to lay the blame on the postal service was entirely honest...) AndyTheGrump (talk) 00:20, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from, 13 January 2011

{{edit semi-protected}} There is a good discussion of Marx's ethics in this article (linked on Marx's theory of alienation page) - worth adding to the references section on this page I think (talk) 03:07, 13 January 2011 (UTC)

I suspect that some might suggest that International Socialism isn't a scholarly source, but from a quick look the article certainly looks properly researched, and written in an academic style. I'd be inclined to add it, but perhaps it might be best to await further comment. AndyTheGrump (talk) 03:36, 13 January 2011 (UTC)
Not done: please establish a consensus for this alteration before using the {{edit semi-protected}} template. Logan Talk Contributions 05:54, 13 January 2011 (UTC)
Hang on a minute. Shouldn't we wait for more comments before tagging with 'not done' templates? So far we have two in favour of inclusion (the IP and myself), and no comments opposing. AndyTheGrump (talk) 15:20, 13 January 2011 (UTC)
After a week with no further comment, I've now added the reference, given that no substantive objection has been raised. AndyTheGrump (talk) 13:39, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

Pictures of Marx's Tomb

Is it really necessary, at two points on the page, to feature a shot of Marx's tomb? The pictures are only from slightly different angles, and the photos and their accompanying points are redundant. J1.grammar natz (talk) 00:53, 13 February 2011 (UTC)

Probably not. I'd say the 2nd one is the clearer image, and should stay (the monument is quite well known, so probably deserves one photo). It would be nice to replace the first one with something else, rather than just deleting it though, I'd suggest - images help to break up the rather dense text. AndyTheGrump (talk) 01:02, 13 February 2011 (UTC)
I've removeed one of them, leaving the one that was slightly clearer.(Midnightblueowl (talk) 23:28, 19 February 2011 (UTC))

Marx in film, 18 February 2011

I wonder would it be approriate to compile lists of Marx documentaries and fiction films at this page or a separate one? No attention seems to have been given to this, only to written sources.Rachel0898 (talk) 16:56, 18 February 2011 (UTC)

Given the length of the existing article, and the peripheral nature of such a list, I'd suggest that a separate article would be more sensible. AndyTheGrump (talk) 17:03, 18 February 2011 (UTC)

A rewrite of the introduction

Hello all! As some of you may have noticed, I've recently been trying to give this page a tidy up, and as a part of this, I heavily edited and replaced parts of the introduction. Andy the Grump (who it appears is one of the primary editors responsible for taking care of this page) undid this, noting that it was a major step to take without discussion and that my replacement was a little scant. In this I totally agree, and applaud him [assuming from the name that Andy is a "he"- apologies if I'm wrong!] for his diligence.

My main issue with the introduction as it currently stands is that it goes into some detail about Marxism, but seems to offer little information about Marx himself, who is the subject of this article. It also seems to be heavily dominated simply by quotes, which is again something that needs rectifying. Instead I suggest maybe a structure of five short paragraphs: the first providing a very basic introduction ("Karl Marx was a…" etc etc etc), with the next two offering up a summary of his life (including publications), the fourth dealing with Marxism, and the fifth discussing his influence. Any thoughts ? (Midnightblueowl (talk) 19:59, 21 February 2011 (UTC))

Hi, Yes, I'm a 'he'. I'd seen the work you were doing, and I'd like to say that other than with this issue, it seems excellent to me - thanks for all that. Regarding the intro, I think there has been a fair bit of debate about this, including questions about whether it needed the lengthy quote. I'm inclined to suggest that it does, along with at least a basic indication of what 'Marxism' is - it is rather long, and probably a bit difficult for someone unfamiliar with the topic, but trying to summarise a complex philosophical analysis in a few words is less-than-practical. The difficulty is compounded by the fact that if you don't explain (at least in general) what Marxism is, the bio becomes little more than a chronology. It seems to me that the introduction to a biography of a political philosopher needs political philosophy for the same reason that one for a bio of a sociologist needs sociology in it (see Max Weber), or one for the bio of a Hollywood star needs movies in it (see Clark Gable). I'm also of the opinion that the best person to explain Marxism is Marx himself - he could write more clearly, and with more sense of involvement, than must of those who have those who have followed him. It might be as well to see what others think, though - I'll take another look at this myself too. (though I'd stress that I've not actually had much input into this article, it is the work of many, and I've only been watching it, and performing the odd tweak, in the last few months - there are probably others who have done much more, and will have more to say) AndyTheGrump (talk) 20:33, 21 February 2011 (UTC)
As long as we have an article on Marxism, this article should try very hard not to be about Marxism. Sure, the reason why we have an encyclopedia on marx is because of the influence of his writings - which include 20th century revolutionary Communist parties, as well as a range of different kinds of "Marxisms," as well as his importance in social theory and academe, including work that authors self-identify as "Marxian" rather than "Marxist," and I think it is reasonable to say this in the introduction. But I think this should be our standard: to say only as much about him as is necessary to explain why he is worthy of an encyclopedia article. And then have a link to Marxism. A list of dates? I do not think that is what we would be left with. Good biographers and historians know how to tell a story about someone that is not anachronistic, i.e. that does not define Marx solely in terms of his 20th century legacy. This would be more of a challenge to write since we would have to read real historians and biographers and rely on them more for the content, rather than the much larger and better-known literature on "Marxism" but I think this would lead to a better article on Marx. Slrubenstein | Talk 21:51, 22 February 2011 (UTC)
I agree with Slrubenstein, this is a biography, primarily a description of Marx' life and accomplishments during his life and only secondarily about his legacy. Marxism, as any political ideology, has a life of its own that is independent of its origin. Not saying that describing the basics of Marxism is irrelevant here, just that focus should be kept on the biographic narrative and only describe Marx' thoughts as they relate to his lived life and legacy.·Maunus·ƛ· 00:28, 23 February 2011 (UTC)

Irrelevant information on Lenin and peasants

The last and third part of the London section seems to be irrelevant here. Instead of dealing with Marx, it discusses views of Lenin and the situation of Russian peasants. It seems that this discussion is not even Marx's own, it seems like Lenin's (?) polemic with Marx (if it is related to Marx's thought at all). I am not sure where it should be moved to, but I think it's should be removed from this article. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 05:18, 3 March 2011 (UTC)

Agreed, the text should be moved to the article about Lenin. Rangoon11 (talk) 12:38, 3 March 2011 (UTC)
Yes, it doesn't belong here. AndyTheGrump (talk) 17:14, 3 March 2011 (UTC)

Ok, since we seem to have a consensus, I am moving this text here. I am not sure where to add it; if anybody wants to move it to Lenin, please do so. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 21:19, 4 March 2011 (UTC)

Writing with the advantage of nearly twenty additional years of closer observation of the rural communes in Russia, V. I. Lenin was able to conclude that the rural commune could not be the agent socialist development in Russia, exactly because increasing numbers of Russian peasants within the rural communes were being separated from the means of production within the rural commune.[1] Within the Russian rural commune, land was the "means of production". Ideally, all peasants in the rural commune would own or have access to an equal share of the land operated by the commune. Lenin's close analysis of the communes concludes that not all peasants within the rural commune had equal access to land. Indeed, at the time that Lenin wrote his book (1899), there was already a drastic difference between the amount of land cultivated by some rich kulak peasants as opposed to other poorer peasants within the rural commune.[2] Furthermore, this condition was not static. Rather the "differentiation of the peasantry" within the rural commune was an ongoing process. More and more small peasants within the rural commune were becoming unable to support themselves on the small amount of land they had access to within the rural commune.

Inevitably, many poor peasants within the rural communes across Russia were actually "landless". As the years went by many more of the small peasants within the rural communes were becoming landless as the process of "differentiation of the peasantry" allowed the rich peasants to become richer and the poor peasants became poorer.

Some of the landless peasants were required to seek employment from the richer "kulak" peasants within the rural commune. These landless peasants would be considered a part of the rural proletariat. Other landless peasants would leave the commune altogether and join the urban proletariat. Whichever way the landless peasant went, Lenin points out that this development is totally familiar to us as nothing more or less than the familiar process of the ruin and "proletariatization" of the small peasantry, by the complete separation of that small "landless" peasantry from the means of production.[3]

I found more Lenin's cruft, moving it below. Per discussion above, this article is about Marx, not Lenin. This is not the place to discuss how various people were inspired by Marx. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 07:35, 5 March 2011 (UTC)

However Lenin, an influential Russian thinker and revolutionary, argued that in the age of imperialism, and due to the "law of uneven development", where Russia had on the one hand, an antiquated agricultural society, but on the other hand, some of the most up-to-date industrial concerns, the "chain" might break at its weakest points, that is, in the so-called "backward" countries, and then ignite revolution in the advanced industrial societies of Europe, where society is ready for socialism, and which could then in turn come to the aid of the workers' state in Russia.[4]

100 Mark der DDR note used in the German Democratic Republic. 100-Mark banknotes with Marx's portrait circulated from 1964 until monetary union with West Germany in July 1990.

Marx and Engels make a very significant comment in the preface to the Russian edition of the Communist Manifesto:

Now the question is: can the Russian obshchina, though greatly undermined, yet a form of primeval common ownership of land, pass directly to the higher form of Communist common ownership? Or, on the contrary, must it first pass through the same process of dissolution such as constitutes the historical evolution of the West? The only answer to that possible today is this: If the Russian Revolution becomes the signal for a proletarian revolution in the West, so that both complement each other, the present Russian common ownership of land may serve as the starting point for a communist development.

— (Marx and Engels, Preface to the Russian edition of the Communist Manifesto)

Rewriting Marx's thought

I am currently in process of working on that section - your assistance is appreciated. As it stood, a lot of ideas where mixed up in two weird sections - "philosophy" and "political economy". I am trying to organize them into more meaningful sections, and eliminate any redundancy. Help would be most appreciated in referencing unreferenced sentences (this is also needed in the latter biography sections) and in ensuring that all key ideas are covered (I am working with several introductory texts, under the assumption that they cover such ideas; unfortunately, they are often significantly different to make me concerned about how many I need to use before the article is comprehensive...). --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 00:48, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

I am done using the refs I had or found over the past few days. Tomorrow I'll try to finish referencing the biography. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 01:42, 9 March 2011 (UTC)

Unreferenced and/or irrelevant fragments

Here I will list the mostly unreferenced fragments that I removed, plus the few that struck me as mostly irrelevant. Some or most of those fragments may be true, but I they didn't seem mentioned in the texts I was using, nor could I find reliable sources form them on Google Books. I am listing them here for discussion, and possible rescue. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 23:11, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

Consequently, most followers of Marx espouse not fatalism, but activism: they believe that revolutionaries must organize social change.

On Hegel's thought

Hegel believed that human history is characterized by the movement from the fragmentary toward the complete and the real (which was also a movement towards greater and greater rationality). This progressive unfolding of the Absolute involves gradual, evolutionary accretion which culminates in revolutionary leaps and episodal upheavals against the existing status quo. For example, Hegel strongly opposed slavery in the United States during his lifetime, and he envisioned a time when Christian nations would eliminate it from their civilization.

Thus, like Hegel and other philosophers, Marx distinguished between appearances and reality. But he did not believe that the material world hides from us the "real" world of the ideal; on the contrary, he thought that historically and socially specific ideology prevented people from seeing the material conditions of their lives clearly.


Marx's acceptance of this notion of materialist dialectics which rejected Hegel's idealism was greatly influenced by Ludwig Feuerbach. In The Essence of Christianity, Feuerbach argued that God is really a creation of man and that the qualities people attribute to God are really qualities of humanity. Accordingly, Marx argued that it is the material world that is real and that our ideas of it are consequences, not causes, of the world.

Engels' article "Outlines of Political Economy" in the Deutsch-Französische Jahrbücher also had a great influence in directing him towards the study of the workings of the capitalist economy.

On ideology

Thus, while such ideas may be false, they also reveal in coded form some truth about political relations. For example, although the belief that the things people produce are actually more productive than the people who produce them is literally absurd, it does reflect (according to Marx and Engels) that people under capitalism are alienated from their own labor-power.

Moreover, he provides an analysis of the ideological functions of religion: to reveal "an inverted consciousness of the world." He continues: "It is the immediate task of philosophy, which is in the service of history, to unmask self-estrangement in its unholy forms, once religion, the holy form of human self-estrangement has been unmasked". For Marx, this unholy self-estrangement, the "loss of man", is complete once the proletariat realizes its potential to unite in revolutionary solidarity. His final conclusion is that for Germany, general human emancipation is only possible as a suspension of private property by the proletariat.

Marx argued that this alienation of human work (and resulting commodity fetishism) functions precisely as the defining feature of capitalism. Prior to capitalism, markets existed in Europe where producers and merchants bought and sold commodities. According to Marx, a capitalist mode of production developed in Europe when labor itself became a commodity—when peasants became free to sell their own labor-power, and needed to do so because they no longer possessed their own land. People sell their labor-power when they accept compensation in return for whatever work they do in a given period of time (in other words, they do not sell the product of their labor, but their capacity to work). In return for selling their labor-power they receive money, which allows them to survive. Those who must sell their labor-power are "proletarians". The person who buys the labor power, generally someone who does own the land and technology to produce, is a "capitalist" or "bourgeois". The proletarians inevitably outnumber the capitalists.

Marx distinguished industrial capitalists from merchant capitalists. Merchants buy goods in one market and sell them in another. Since the laws of supply and demand operate within given markets, a difference often exists between the price of a commodity in one market and another. Merchants, then, practise arbitrage, and hope to capture the difference between these two markets.

When the rate of profit falls below a certain point, the result would be a recession or depression in which certain sectors of the economy would collapse. Marx thought that during such an economic crisis the price of labour would also fall, and eventually make possible the investment in new technologies and the growth of new sectors of the economy.

The American Marx scholar Hal Draper once remarked, "there are few thinkers in modern history whose thought has been so badly misrepresented, by Marxists and anti-Marxists alike."

As a scientist and materialist, Marx did not understand classes as purely subjective (in other words, groups of people who consciously identified with one another). He sought to define classes in terms of objective criteria, such as their access to resources—that is, whether or not a group owns the means of production.

Accusations of antisemitism

Per previous discussions, I am removing this from the body. I also note this has not been mentioned at all in either of four or five intro texts on Marx I've read. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 01:56, 9 March 2011 (UTC)

Some authors like Bernard Lewis, Edward H. Flannery and Hyam Maccoby, view Marx's On The Jewish Question as an antisemitic work, and identify what they contend are antisemitic epithets in his published and private writings.[5][6] According to them, Marx regarded Jews as the embodiment of capitalism and thus the creators of its evils.[7]

The above authors often quote the following excerpt from On The Jewish Question to support their arguments:

What is the secular basis of Judaism? Practical need, selfishness. What is the secular cult of the Jew? Haggling. What is his secular god? Money. Well then, an emancipation from haggling and money, from practical, real Judaism would be the self emancipation of our age...

...The social emancipation of the Jew is the emancipation of society from Judaism.[8]

On the other hand, the political-scientist Professor Iain Hamphsher-Monk wrote in his textbook: "This work [On The Jewish Question] has been cited as evidence for Marx's supposed anti-semitism, but only the most superficial reading of it could sustain such an interpretation."[9] Also, McLellan and Francis Wheen argue readers should interpret On the Jewish Question in the context of Marx's debates with Bruno Bauer, author of The Jewish Question, about Jewish emancipation in Germany. Francis Wheen says: "Those critics, who see this as a foretaste of 'Mein Kampf', overlook one, essential point: in spite of the clumsy phraseology and crude stereotyping, the essay was actually written as a defense of the Jews. It was a retort to Bruno Bauer, who had argued that Jews should not be granted full civic rights and freedoms unless they were baptised as Christians", although Wheen also says that Marx "sprayed anti-Semitic insults at his enemies with savage glee".[10] According to McLellan, Marx used the word Judentum colloquially, as meaning commerce, arguing that Germans suffer, and must be emancipated from, capitalism. McLellan concludes that readers should interpret the essay's second half as an extended pun at Bauer's expense.[11] Jonathan Sacks, Chief Rabbi of the United Kingdom, regards application of the term "antisemitism" to Marx as an anachronism—because when Marx wrote On the Jewish Question, virtually all major philosophers expressed antisemitic tendencies, but the word "antisemitism" had not yet been coined, let alone developed a racial component, and little awareness existed of the depths of European prejudice against Jews. Marx thus simply expressed the commonplace thinking of his era, according to Sacks.[12]

B-class review request

I am done with the main work; all content should be reliably referenced, and all points from the several intro texts I worked with are present. I will be posting B-class review requests to the appropriate projects shortly, and afterward I'd like to nominate this article for a GA. I'd appreciate any comments, as well as language copy editing (I am not a native speaker of English, so...). --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 23:18, 9 March 2011 (UTC)

  • Drive by: For GA or A class "Failed predictions and disputed theories" needs work. It conflates the proletariat in Marx's writings with the working class in particular the manual blue collar working class. This conflation almost certainly occurs in the sources used, but not in other sources. This needs drawing out by distinguishing the terms while respecting the limits of the critique supplied in the sources used. Fifelfoo (talk) 23:48, 9 March 2011 (UTC)
    • The problem is, as you note, that this is what the sources used say. If you had a source that would clarify this issue, please list it here or fix the issue in the article; none of the sources I used seemed to deal with that aspect, unfortunately. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 00:25, 10 March 2011 (UTC)
      • An article in Transformations 17 a peer reviewed journal, notes this conflation, but doesn't do so in reference to critiques of marx. However, Hugo Radice, The Prospects for Socialism: A Question of Capital and Class. CSGP 11/1 2011 does so at page 7 available here as a PDF. These working papers appear to be differentiated in authority from the other papers published by CSGP—they are more authorative than the other two types. Fifelfoo (talk) 00:38, 10 March 2011 (UTC)

Its great work that you've been doing here Piotrus, but I don't think that this article is anywhere near GA status as of yet. Much more work is needed, and I'm sure we'll be able to do so. (Midnightblueowl (talk) 17:23, 10 March 2011 (UTC))

  • Could you be more specific? Anyway, for now I am focusing on the B-class rating, then we will see what the GA reviewer will ask us to do. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 18:00, 10 March 2011 (UTC)
    • Well, mostly with the use of sourcing, i.e. using more actual biographies of Marx to accompany the sources already used, and the section on Marx's life in London probably needs fleshing out and dividing up, which I plan to work at. But by all means, this does deserve B-rating. (Midnightblueowl (talk) 21:11, 10 March 2011 (UTC))
      • Hmmm, I think that most sources used are reliable... but of course, the article does need more work, I am certain about that. I will be looking forward to your additions! --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 21:53, 10 March 2011 (UTC)
        • I agree that they are probably reliable, but it is always best to use references that are specific to the article topic.(Midnightblueowl (talk) 19:19, 11 March 2011 (UTC))
          • I agree, but as far as I know, this is not required for Featured Articles, even. Anyway, I think the article is at least B-class (although nobody seems willing to make that change...), and as such, I am nominating it for GA to receive the GA review. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 16:37, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

Bloated "see also" section

At the time of writing, Karl_Marx#See_also contains an overwhelming 59 links. Such sections are generally indicative of underdeveloped articles, not those aspiring to GA status – articles relevant to the topic should already have been discussed and linked to in the previous sections, and the irrelevant expunged. Most of the links relate more closely to Marxism than Marx himself, and thus could be incorporated into the (already present) {{Marxism}} template with no loss to the article. Skomorokh 16:07, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

I agree. Would you be willing to do the pruning? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 16:19, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
I've excised the Marxism links and the two remaining books, and am tempted to do likewise for the links concerning Marxian economic theory. Topics of minor notability like Marx Memorial Library present a bit of a problem but I would recommend taking an approach like that of {{Nietzsche}} and shoving them in nav template. Not much excuse for not incorporating the remaining links into the article (Young Marx is a particularly galling omission).
The External links section is another that will need serious attention at some point, and there is even padding in the Further reading (Rothbard, really?). Best, Skomorokh 17:13, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
I think that we need to leave this until a few more contributors have commented - it shouldn't really be down to individual choice, and the smaller it is, the easier it is for future contributors to give undue weight to a POV by adding more. I think we are justified in keeping this fairly large, just to indicate the varied sources available - let readers decide for themselves what is relevant. AndyTheGrump (talk) 17:40, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
On the few vs many links issue I understand where you are coming from, and for a topic of such breadth and immense secondary literature I would agree that greater leeway than usual is warranted here. However, once you start stacking links past the half a dozen mark, we are running up against best practices and risk failing in our curatorial mission to guide readers to the most relevant material.
On the procedural issue of wanting greater input I am all for it, but you might want to advertise lest discussion founder without resolution. Best, Skomorokh 18:02, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
I will see about incorporating the see also's into the text. Can you start pruning elinks and fur reading? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 17:48, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
I would be happy to, but Andy above seems to favour a maximalist approach and the input of more editors before radical changes. Skomorokh 18:02, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
There seem to be quite a few regular contributors to the article, so it shouldn't be that hard to get more input. I'm not sure whether it is ok to leave (neutral) messages on talk pages of recent regular contributors, or whether posting on Wikipedia:WikiProject_Marxism might be better: an RfC would seem a bit over-the-top.
To expand on my earlier comments: the reason I favour an 'inclusionist' (if not necessarily 'maximalist') approach to 'Further reading' and 'External links' here is that the range (not just the number) of topics is broad, and we need to indicate this. I think it is a little misleading to compare this biography to a 'typical' Wikipedia one, and then compare number of entries etc. This is a large article, and as such might well be justified in expanding such sections. Yes, we need to conform with WP:ELPOINTS, but I think that this policy is mostly intended to restrict overlinking to similar sites, and to discourage spam links. This isn't really the problem here, as I see it. If the occasional link to an obscure Trot sect (or whatever) gets added, it is probably better discussed on a case-by-case basis, rather than citing general policy regarding number of links. AndyTheGrump (talk) 19:02, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
Marx did influence a lot of different subjects/subfields which now have their own wikipedia articles, so a few extra see-alsos is understandable, but I think the current list is just too much, Some pruning of the lesser ones (or less relevant ones) could be helpful although I don't want to tread on anybody's toes... bobrayner (talk) 16:41, 16 March 2011 (UTC)
I've incorporated Young Marx into the text. Somebody should at least stub mature Marx, currently just a redirect... --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 16:35, 16 March 2011 (UTC)
See also should be for articles that are not already linked in the article. This article probably does not need one. external links should be to sites that are not covered in linked articles. Links to his published works, Marx museums and neutral websites would seem fine, but links to non-notable essays should be excluded. TFD (talk) 15:34, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

GA Review

This review is transcluded from Talk:Karl Marx/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: RcsprinterSee what I've doneGimme a message 17:08, 30 March 2011 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section.

OK, lets get cracking.

GA review (see here for criteria)
  1. It is reasonably well written.
    a (prose): b (MoS for lead, layout, word choice, fiction, and lists):
  2. It is factually accurate and verifiable.
    a (references): b (citations to reliable sources): c (OR):
  3. It is broad in its coverage.
    a (major aspects): b (focused):
  4. It follows the neutral point of view policy.
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. It is stable.
    No edit wars, etc.:
  6. It is illustrated by images, where possible and appropriate.
    a (images are tagged and non-free images have fair use rationales): b (appropriate use with suitable captions):
  7. Overall:
    Yep, this is a great article. Goes to GA right away. I'd recomend it for Featured.

I'm all happy with that. Thank you. RcsprinterSee what I've doneGimme a message 17:17, 30 March 2011 (UTC)

Hold on here - is see missing refs all over - dead ones and bare ones (that just the ref problems) - humm think a third party should have a look here. Thank you Rcsprinter for taking the time to do this GA review - however i think there is problams with the article that are lacking in the review.Moxy (talk) 05:12, 31 March 2011 (UTC)
I fixed two dead links. Everything else seems to work, and I see no bare urls. If I missed something, please list it here and be more specific (which link/ref is dead or bare). Thanks, --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 22:09, 4 April 2011 (UTC)
"fact" seems to be overused.SBaker43 (talk) 02:41, 1 April 2011 (UTC)
What facts? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 22:09, 4 April 2011 (UTC)
Sorry I wasn't clear, the word "fact". Removed unnecessary "in fact" wording. Left one that was quoted; didn't verify the quote.SBaker43 (talk) 02:59, 6 April 2011 (UTC)
You'd removed a "fact" from another quotation, SBaker43, but I've restored it. [1] No harm done... AndyTheGrump (talk) 03:46, 6 April 2011 (UTC)
Thanks; should have checked them again.SBaker43 (talk) 04:27, 6 April 2011 (UTC)
Is this on hold or something? RcsprinterGimme a message 19:07, 8 April 2011 (UTC)


Right well, I'll fail this then. I thought it was good, but you've spotted some mistakes. Some days have gone by and it's still in that state. RcsprinterGimme a message 15:50, 11 April 2011 (UTC)

What mistakes? Can somebody clearly say what are the problems with the article? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 16:16, 11 April 2011 (UTC)
All the above. RcsprinterGimme a message 16:46, 11 April 2011 (UTC)

The above discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section.

Marx was not a German

Karl Marx was not a German. At best, he only has tenuous claim to being a German, and this claim is not rooted in the two primary components of belonging to a nation. Although raised in Germany, he was not an ethnic German but an Ashkenazi Jew. If you do not know what this means, or if you think I am making a distinction based on religion, please read those two articles - I do not refer to religion, which Marx was not involved with, but ethnicity. Karl Marx was therefore not an ethnic German and cannot claim to be German on that basis. However, we know that citizenship can encompass different ethnic groups, and if he was a German citizen, then, he would have been considered a German. There are two reasons why he should not be. Karl Marx left Germany at a relatively young age and lived in France and the United Kingdom, and possibly held all three citizenships, but, in all likelihood, held none. Hence why we put him into the 'stateless persons' category. He was a committed internationalist, claiming to belong to no nation in particular, but the world, and the cosmopolitan nature of his life - living in three different countries - shows this.

He was therefore not a German in either ethnicity, nationality or citizenship, and all suggestions that he was must be removed from the page. I am giving you time to reply and justify your re-addition of 'German' identity to this page prior to the removal of it once more. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wolfehenson (talkcontribs) 18:32, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

Have you any evidence that his German citizenship was withdrawn? Unless you can provide this, your suggestion makes little sense. In any case, to state that it is not possible to be both an Ashkenazi Jew and an ethnic German is a rather contentious statement - have you got a source for this? AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:40, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
(ec)Your suggestion that a Jew cannot be a German is reminiscent of the worst excesses of 20th century European racism; it is certainly no basis for editing Wikipedia. We base our articles on reliable sources; if you do not know what this means, I suggest you read our policies and guidelines. Your threats are unacceptable, and your apparent insistence on adding "Jewish" to articles without sources or justification is very disturbing. RolandR (talk) 18:54, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

Clearly, Roland, you did not even read what I wrote, and your emotive statements and implicit accusations are misdirected. As a Jew myself, I suggest you read that page, so you can understand our people a little better. We are a people with a linguistic, cultural, historical and even genetic basis, a people to which Karl Marx belonged. Germans are also a people with these traits, and Marx did not belong to them - only in terms of citizenship, originally, but then he moved country, foregoing his only connection - legal citizenship - to Germany. Please educate yourself about Jews before commenting. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:41, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

I don't care whether you are a Jew or not, your comment was misplaced. I read your comments, and disagree with them. The assertion that one cannot be a Jew and a German led to the mass slaughter of Jews, and I do not accept it. Don't try to patronise me, I am very well informed about Jewish history and culture; and I do not share your interpretation. RolandR (talk) 20:25, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
Marx almost certainly wasn't a German citizen, as he left Germany before Germany was a state. But that doesn't mean he wasn't of German nationality, and neither does the fact that he was Jewish; as a German-speaker born in Germany to German-speaking parents, he was part of the German linguistic and cultural community, that is, he was German. So I'd be opposed to anything specifically saying he wasn't German, but, that being said, I don't know if we need to say that he was German in the opening sentence; to what extent is his German nationality important, given that he did most of his notable work outside of Germany (though in the German language, and he remained connected to German politics)? VoluntarySlave (talk) 20:07, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

VoluntarySlave, you have a more accurate interpretation. I will return to your comments later.

Roland, I have to reject your assertion that you have read my comments thoroughly. If you had, you would understand that we are in agreement, and that I do not deny that one can be simultaneously a German and a Jew. My own family in fact were for generations. Certainly, a Jew can live in Germany and hold German citizenship, being a full and integrated part of German national life. But this is where our connection to host nations begins and ends. As long as Jews hold citizenship and live in the country, they are part of the country - if they do not, then they are not, they are simply Jews. Marx falls into the latter category, given that he lived and worked outside of Germany for most of his life. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wolfehenson (talkcontribs) 21:57, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

I repeat, I read your comments carefully, and I reject them. We are not in agreement. It may be hard for you to grasp this, but it is perfectly possible to understand what you are saying, and not to agree with you. And please do not suggest that I am lying. RolandR (talk) 23:08, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
That may be your opinion. Unless you can find reliable sources that say the same thing however, this is of no relevance. Again I ask, do you have any evidence that Marx had his citizenship renounced, or that he renounced it himself? AndyTheGrump (talk) 22:06, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

Roland, your main point of contention was with my supposed statement that Jews cannot be Germans. Now that you know that I did not say or mean this, what exactly are you disagreeing with? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wolfehenson (talkcontribs) 07:56, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

Your statement that "Although raised in Germany, he was not an ethnic German but an Ashkenazi Jew", which posits the two as distinct and mutually exclusive categories. If, as you claim, he was not a German, this was irrespective of whether he was a Jew. It is possible to be either, neither or both.RolandR (talk) 08:20, 15 March 2011 (UTC)
Moreover, his father was a Lutheran, and he maried a non-Jew, so can you provide a reliable source (Marx's biographewr?) saying he was reared as an Ashkenazi Jew, or that heself-identifid as an Ashkenazi Jew? Slrubenstein | Talk 11:24, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

Slrubenstein, judging by your interests, you should have sufficient knowledge about Jews and Judaism to answer this question yourself. But if not, let me help you out. It is well established that being Jewish is both an ethnic and a religious concept, and is commonly both. The idea of Marx's Jewishness being conditional upon him being 'raised as an Ashkenazi Jew' - if one can even be raised specifically as an Ashkenazi Jew as opposed to a Sephardic Jew - is nonsensical, since Jewish status applies to all those with a Jewish mother, regardless of their level of observance or identification. Marx's father converted to Lutheranism to gain access to the legal profession, and married a Jewish woman. Wolfehenson —Preceding undated comment added 13:24, 15 March 2011 (UTC).

And Roland, although that statement might not reflect popular opinion, it is a scientific and genetic fact. Perhaps it would help to conceptualise it in a different way. Can one be both a African People and an Ethnic German? Clearly not, but that is not equivalent to saying that a Black African person cannot be a German through citizenship. Here is the distinction. Wolfehenson —Preceding undated comment added 13:33, 15 March 2011 (UTC).

Of course one can. For instance, Otto Schimming. RolandR (talk) 14:07, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

Your example actually disproves your previous claim. You are now claiming that Otto Schimming is an Ethnic German due to his German ancestry, and yes, that is a valid point - he can claim an ethnic connection to Germany on that basis. Karl Marx however was not of Ethnic German Ancestry but of Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry, so he cannot claim a connection based on ancestry. It really is not hard to understand. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wolfehenson (talkcontribs) 14:47, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

Wolfehenson, YOU should know enough about WP policy that we editors cannot do original research. It does not matter what Iknow about Jews, Judaism, or Jewishness - for me to connect that knowledge to what I know about Marx to then conclude that he has a Jew 9and not aa German) would be a clear violation of WP:SYNTH. I am not arguing with you. This is not a question of logic, or putting my POV in the article, or your POV. Wikipedia includes all significant views from reliable sources and all i have asked is that you provide appropriate sources to support your claim. I asked, "can you provide a reliable source (Marx's biographewr?) saying he was reared as an Ashkenazi Jew, or that heself-identifid as an Ashkenazi Jew?" and I am still waiting for an answer to this simple question. Slrubenstein | Talk 17:20, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

'Wolfehenson' your argument is completely absurd, given the extent to which Marx is part of the German cultural and philosophical tradition. Clearly you know nothing about history. Marx's thought makes no sense, except in the German cultural-context in which he was raised and educated. He was raised in Prussia, he was a Young Hegelian, he was German-speaking, German-educated, involved in German politics, he had a Prussian wife, he had Prussian citizenship, he wrote in German, remained connected to Germans in exile, and his work is an important part of the German philosophical tradition. Avaya1 (talk) 14:00, 29 April 2011 (UTC)

Edit request from Woodshadow, 4 April 2011

The current text has a typo: "His main source of income was his college, Engels,...." "College" should be "colleague".

Woodshadow (talk) 02:34, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

Oops! Thanks for pointing that out - fixed. AndyTheGrump (talk) 02:43, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

GA Review

This review is transcluded from Talk:Karl Marx/GA2. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: -- Eraserhead1 <talk> 13:31, 23 April 2011 (UTC)


GA review – see WP:WIAGA for criteria

  1. Is it reasonably well written?
    A. Prose quality:
    Most of the prose is excellent, however the "inspiration" section is too technical. I would like a better explanation of Soho if possible, its more than just "a district" in central London.
    B. MoS compliance for lead, layout, words to watch, fiction, and lists:
    No issues.
  2. Is it factually accurate and verifiable?
    A. References to sources:
    There needs to be a full reference for #132, Ibid and Wheen somewhere in the article. I'm not too worried about the reference styles matching. All fixed.
    B. Citation of reliable sources where necessary:
    C. No original research:
    I want to have a check at some of the online sources, but it looks fine
  3. Is it broad in its coverage?
    A. Major aspects:
    B. Focused:
    The introduction to the Philosophy and Social thought section needs expanding
  4. Is it neutral?
    Fair representation without bias:
    I don't think the title "Marxism as the ideology of totalitarian states" meets NPOV. Discussed below.
  5. Is it stable?
    No edit wars, etc:
  6. Does it contain images to illustrate the topic?
    A. Images are copyright tagged, and non-free images have fair use rationales:
    I'm going to check this later. All fine.
    B. Images are provided where possible and appropriate, with suitable captions:
  7. Overall:
    Pass or Fail:
    An excellent article.

I'll try to go over the smaller, technical issues soon. I think I addressed the small items. Two questions:
How would you like the "Philosophy and Social thought" section expanded? I am out of ideas what else is relevant, having included things mentioned in several intro texts. I am open for suggestions, of course - but they'd need to be more detailed than just "this section should be expanded." Because to such a criticism I'll answer with the elaborate "I don't think so" :D
The neutrality of the section you mentioned was discussed above and I think the consensus was to let it be. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 21:45, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
  • I added a brief explanation of Soho, although I am not sure if it is really relevant here. Still, seems harmless enough. I rereaed inspirations and it seems fine to me, I am not sure how to make it "less technical". It seems an accessible read to me (jargon, when present, is hyperlinked, and doesn't seem to intense). --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 22:02, 23 April 2011 (UTC)
    • On Soho I just felt reading through the article that its significance would be lost on people who didn't know what it was and who didn't read the article - I think the new wording makes it clearer. On the new sections if they've been discussed I'm not going to worry too much about it, I'm happy to drop that.
    • On the Philosophy and Social thought the bit I thought was too short was the introduction - I think I missed that the next sections are subsections of it on my first reading :o.
    • On the inspirations section I'll come up with a better explanation over the next day or so, I felt when I read it that it wasn't up to the standard of the rest of the article and used more philosophical jargon. -- Eraserhead1 <talk> 00:04, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
      • PS Wheen 2000, and Ibid still need fixing so they point at a full reference. -- Eraserhead1 <talk> 00:06, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

Inspirations section

I can follow the rest of the article quite nicely, but as a non-expert: "Hegel's dialectical method and historical orientation" isn't clear to me, "the classical political economy of Adam Smith and David Ricardo" doesn't really make much sense to me either.

"Marx's view of history, which came to be called historical materialism (controversially adapted as the philosophy of dialectical materialism by Engels and Lenin) certainly shows the influence of Hegel's claim that one should view reality (and history) dialectically" for example could do with simplifying. Its a very interesting idea (once you read dialectically) but you shouldn't need to to get a general feel for what the sentence means.

"However, Hegel had thought in idealist terms, and Marx sought to rewrite dialectics in materialist terms." - what are materialism and idealism, to me they are philosphoical buzzwords - there's no need to go into a lot of detail but a brief explanation of them would be good.

"utopian socialists" - even that article doesn't really explain it.

That should be a start - and the rest of the section looks fine. -- Eraserhead1 <talk> 09:29, 24 April 2011 (UTC)


There have been a fair few edits to the page and the user who requested the review has been active. These issues are really quite minor but they do need fixing. I can't fix the references because I don't know what they should be, and I don't know enough about Philosophy to fix the other issues. It would be a shame to decline this page, as it is very good, but if the issues aren't fixed I will do so. I'd like to see significant progress next week. -- Eraserhead1 <talk> 09:04, 30 April 2011 (UTC)

I was busy for a few days, my apologies. I've fixed the refs. I've simplified the Hegel's sentence, but the Smith's and Ricardo is simple and linked to political economy already; the cited source does not say much more about it. I am again not certain how to rewrite the next sentence (I should note I am a sociologist, not a philosopher, and I find all of the "dialectic" discussions rather a pointless buzz anyway...). I clarified the next sentence, although I feel it was clarified already by the one that follows it, as well as the discussion in the bio section. Utopian socialists are linked, and their views presented in the sentence (as the subject of what Marx is criticizing). I've tried to clarify that. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 01:26, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
No worries :). I'll look a bit later and see what I think. -- Eraserhead1 <talk> 07:35, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
OK Looking better, "French social and socialogical thought" is still a bit mysterious to me and needs explaining better. Additionally the "Philosophy and social thought" section needs a little more of an introduction so its a real paragraph. -- Eraserhead1 <talk> 16:48, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
Even better, now just that introduction. -- Eraserhead1 <talk> 17:04, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
I shortened this to French socialist thought per source and linked to History of the Left in France. I also expanded the short section you pointed to. I hope it is more clear now. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 17:12, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
OK, its now a GA. -- Eraserhead1 <talk> 17:36, 2 May 2011 (UTC)

Anti-Semitism section

I am beginning to think that the section on accused anti-Semitism is given undue weight for two reasons, most importantly, it talks in detail about one of Marx's least important/influential/read works (for Marx who spent most of his life on political economy and philosophy one debate with a second rate academic pales in comparison) and second because it is larger and more detailed than some sections such as "political economy"! There is therefore greater interest in expanding this section over the other, but it doesn't reflect due weight entirely. I would recommend cutting down the section to a few sentences and possibly removing its own section and incorporating it. ValenShephard (talk) 05:25, 5 January 2011 (UTC)

Surely you jest. This is an article that paints a glowing picture with quotes from terrorist guerrilla war mongers like "Che" and depends on cockeyed logic such as "Marx thus simply expressed the commonplace thinking of his era, according to Sacks.[90]" to defend a racists. (In and of itself this seems an oddity for a purported visionary.) The thinking that people of color were sub human was commonplace in the early 1800's, however this does not excuse the slave owners from being racists pigs. Perhaps your ideology is showing just a bit. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Pcoppney (talkcontribs) 01:00, 23 February 2011 (UTC)
I agree that the section is given undue weight. Even those scholars who claim he was anti-semitic are pretty much limited to discussing "On the Jewish Question," which few Marx scholars consider to be anti-Semitic. Most of this section is already covered in the OJQ article, and it should remain there not here.--Bkwillwm (talk) 22:43, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
I'd support moving this to talk, and leaving in the article at best only a cursory reference, perhaps in the bio section, which I've just expanded to discuss this work. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 22:59, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
That seems a very sensible proposal. AndyTheGrump (talk) 23:03, 5 March 2011 (UTC)
Rule of thumbs: if dictators *cough* Stalin and Mao *cough* have used his ideology as an excuse, he definitely supports dictatorships and it is then obvious he must be antisemitic as well. Stop hiding the fact he is antisemitic. Note: This comment sounds like a weak argument, but this is only because Wikipedia officials warned me to not put in a part of the point. (talk) 04:27, 20 April 2011 (UTC)
By that your logic, if political and religious figures use Jesus as an excuse for mass-murder and the oppression of people (which has been used WAY more than Marx) then he definitely supports dictatorships, ethnic cleansing, and violent religious oppression. Therefore, Jesus was more evil than Marx. (talk) 15:17, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
If you think your argument is only strong if it includes personal attacks on the people making the counterargument, is your argument against the idea really that strong? But anyway, Hitler and others of his era used Darwin as part of the rationale for their extermination and related policies. I don't know of any scholars who therefore call Darwin an antisemite. DMacks (talk) 12:00, 20 April 2011 (UTC)
That's a rather silly statement. You can't control what people do with your ideas after you're dead - if you could, Jesus would be just about the most reviled person on Earth, given all the fuss and strife caused by Christian religious wars. Kate (talk) 12:43, 20 April 2011 (UTC)
An interesting, if unorthodox, use of the word 'obvious' there. I suggest looks up 'non-sequitur' in a dictionary, and tries not to use them quite as often. AndyTheGrump (talk) 12:50, 20 April 2011 (UTC)
DMacks, if you put in people, a plural word, there's nothing personal about it. Andy, don't sound like you're making a good counter argument when you're actually only commenting against one word. And all of you, stop making unrelated comparisons, Marx has nothing to do with Darwin and Jesus. (talk) 00:16, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
It is impossible to make a good counter-argument against two consecutive non-sequiturs - you aren't arguing anything meaningful in the first place. In any case, this isn't a forum, so unless you have reliable sources that make the points you do, they are of no consequence to the article, and therefore merit no further discussion. AndyTheGrump (talk) 00:27, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
It's directly relevant, actually. You're arguing that Marx supported totalitarianism because two dictators, who were born respectively five years before (Joseph Stalin) and ten years after (Mao Zedong) his death, in different countries, used his ideas posthumously as a justification for totalitarian regimes. That's as logical as blaming Jesus and Darwin for atrocities caused in their names. Regardless, I agree with Andy. Find a reliable source. Kate (talk) 00:32, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
We would need sources to show that Marx was anti-Semitic. The discussion is a bit disturbing - it is a re-hash of the old argument that the Jews invented anti-Semitism. TFD (talk) 00:48, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
There are a few sections of Marx's writings which one might by modern standards read as anti-Semitic, but as scholars have pointed out, he was writing in a different time, and in any case they need to be read in context. It is also worth remembering that his undoubted ironic streak has often been missed by those over-keen on reading him as some sort of fountain of truth, or alternatively as Beelzebub's representative on Earth. Yes, he was rude about Jews, but then he was rude about almost everybody. I see no reason to attach any particular significance to this - not that it matters, without sources etc... AndyTheGrump (talk) 01:03, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
Reliable sources? You people are saying this as if I'm a loner in accusing him of antisemitism. Of course your neighbor, or other people you commonly see, probably wouldn't say Karl Marx is antisemitic, but that is only because their not experts on the topic, and you cannot deny the fact many experts agree. A good search of "karl marx anti semitism" on Google [2] will show many reliable sources that agree. Of course you have to pick out the reliable sources that agree with me among the communist rantings, which are obviously not reliable sources (disagree with me? go ask Jimbo Wales if a communist source can be a reliable source, and he'll say NO). It is pretty obvious all the sources which disagree with Marx's antisemitism are communist, because non-communist sources have no reason to deny Marx is antisemitic. (talk) 01:17, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
Again, look up non-sequitur in a dictionary. And look up half-wit while you are at it. AndyTheGrump (talk) 01:21, 21 April 2011 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── half-wit? I was a little surprised about its definition on, as I didn't expect someone self-righteous as you mean the garbage. Guess you're starting to make personal attacks now. Don't blame me for retaliating. (talk) 01:32, 21 April 2011 (UTC)

I don't think this conversation is going anywhere. If you want to make an assertion, you need to provide a WP:RELIABLE source. If this is as commonplace a view as you say, it shouldn't be hard. Please review the applicable policy and act accordingly. Kate (talk) 04:20, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
I said a Google search would bring plenty, but since you're no planning to search yourself, here are a few of them. [3], and [4]. Now, is there a reliable source to counter any of this? (talk) 05:23, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
  • Journal of Historical Review is not a peer-reviewed source (Ulrich's); and therefore it isn't scholarly as it fails to meet the standards of its discipline (history) for scholarly publication; it doesn't meet the reliability criteria for this article (a History article, and therefore covered under MILMOS-B and MILMOS-A requirements for sourcing standards). The second source is not reliable as it has not been subject to editorial review (see the source's mission statement, "To be a rock, and not to roll." It is a self-published blog. Neither of these sources is reliable. Though you may wish to check if the author of the first source published in the peer-reviewed mode, or in books from reliable scholarly presses. Fifelfoo (talk) 05:38, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
Well, there're other sources, which mentions Marx as antisemitic, although less thoroughly: [5], [6], [7], [8], and [9]. (talk) 06:19, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
And what exactly is this "MILMOS-B and MILMOS-A requirements?" No Wikipedia page contains these words and searches on Google and even the urban dictionary are inconclusive. (talk) 06:30, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
Or you could enculture and bother to read up on the standards required of history articles: basically, the scholarly presses and scholarly journals. Which means peer review or commercial book presses for the academic press. Enculturement costs time. Fifelfoo (talk) 10:13, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
Problem is no page on Wikipedia contains the word "MILMOS." —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:08, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
Also, the author of [10], James B. Whisker is a educated man, whose sources have widely been used in many Wikipedia pages. (talk) 23:32, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
James B. Whisker may well be an 'educated man'. I note however that the article you link to is originally from the Journal of Historical Review, which our article describes as ..."a non-peer reviewed serial, periodical, or journal published by the Institute for Historical Review in Torrance, California. Its subject is primarily Holocaust denial"... Are we supposed to take forum for vile anti-Semitic claptrap as an authority on Karl Marx? AndyTheGrump (talk) 23:44, 21 April 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────So are you saying the Journal of Historical Review made this up and put Whisker's name on it even though he didn't write it? That would be pretty absurd and in league of a conspiracy theory. (talk) 02:01, 22 April 2011 (UTC)

No. I'm saying the article you linked says that the Whisker article was originally printed in the Journal of Historical Review, and that the Journal is a known anti-Semitic publication. If it was actually published elsewhere, or was written by someone else, then this doesn't say much for the link you gave. Please take more care in researching sources. AndyTheGrump (talk) 02:14, 22 April 2011 (UTC)
Here's another source with the same article. Nothing to do with Journal of Historical Review this time. ([11]) and as I said, Whiskers was used in many other Wikipedia articles as a reliable source. (talk) 00:55, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Finding another place to download the article isn't the same thing as finding another source. Unless you can find an indication of where it was originally published, and demonstrate that this meets WP:RS, it is of no relevance. As for Whisker being used in "many other Wikipedia articles as a reliable source", I can only find three places he is cited. In any case, whether he is a reliable source for this subject is something that can only be determined after we find out where the article in question came from. To be frank, it looks rather dubious, and not something a serious historian would write. AndyTheGrump (talk) 02:24, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
How an article looks doesn't matter. As long as the person who wrote is is reliable, it doesn't matter what it says. Reliability is of top importance, and if you don't like that, Wikipedia isn't for you. (talk) 08:03, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
"Reliability is of top importance". Exactly. Now give evidence that (a) Whisker is regarded as a reliable source on Marx, and (b) it can be verified that the article you linked to was written by him, and published in a recognised journal. Random articles from obscure websites are hardly valid sources for a topic of this importance. If you wish to argue for incorporation of Whisker's assessment of Marx in the article, you will have to start by finding the original article, to enable it to be cited properly. Only then is it worth discussing whether inclusion would be giving undue weight - as others have already argued, mainstream scholars have attached little importance to the issue of Marx's comments regarding Jewish issues. AndyTheGrump (talk) 12:54, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Whiskers is an expert in military history, and his academic writing within his area of expertise would be a reliable source. But when he writes his own political views outside the academic mainstream and his area of specialty then it has no more weight than the average blog. TFD (talk) 14:43, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
People who are reliable in one way tend to be reliable in others. He is either a reliable source, or an unreliable source. (talk) 18:09, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
No. Reliability refers to publications, not people. Isaac Newton for example was an expert in physics. That does not mean that his views on alchemy should be considered reliable. TFD (talk) 18:39, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── No, reliable people never make unreliable publications, because otherwise they wouldn't even be reliable people, and unreliable people never make reliable publications, otherwise they would be reliable. (talk) 21:44, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

People are not WP:RELIABLE, sources are reliable. In a historical article, source reliability requires publication in a published scholarly source, such as a peer-reviewed journal or a book from an academic press (you can see a listing of acceptable source examples here). A blog entry, regardless of the prestige of the author or his field of expertise, is not a reliable source. Kate (talk) 22:17, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
People are sources, please use a dictionary. Reliable sources never make unreliable publications, and it should be pretty obvious that is a reliable publication. (talk) 20:03, 30 April 2011 (UTC)
Wikipedia must include all significant views. When there are multiple views each one should be given due weight. Some people thing Marx was an anti-Semite, although I do not know of any biographer of marx or interpreter of his works or intellectual historian who wholdes this positon. So it must be reported as minortyor fringe. The viws we include must come from reliable sources; the word "sources" refers to books or articles i.e. stuf that ends up in the works cited section. Slrubenstein | Talk 00:00, 1 May 2011 (UTC)
Please make more sense, it would help a lot. And you need to know reliable sources do state he is antisemitic, so do not question this. I've never seen reliable sources turn out incorrect, so it's stupid to question them. (talk) 02:49, 1 May 2011 (UTC)
"Sane people don't question reliable sources"? Really? I'd have thought that sanity requires scepticism about 'reliable sources' - especially if the only claim to 'reliability' comes from someone over-eager to push a minority point of view. As Slrubenstein says, "Wikipedia must include all significant views" - your views aren't significant. I'll refrain from commenting on your sanity... AndyTheGrump (talk) 03:00, 1 May 2011 (UTC)
If it really isn't significant, why would James Whisker, who normally focuses on military history, write about it? (talk) 16:37, 1 May 2011 (UTC)
Don't Know. Don't particularly care. Whisker isn't a recognised source on the subject, so it doesn't matter. Unless you can find sources meeting Wikipedia standards which suggest that Marx's supposed ant-Semitism is of any real significance, this discussion is closed. AndyTheGrump (talk) 16:49, 1 May 2011 (UTC)
Okay, usually it is a monumental waste of time to engage with some shlemiel who says things like "I've never seen reliable sources turn out incorrect, so it is stupid to question them" but every year Wikipedia expands and attracts new users and it is inevitable that many do not know or understand our policies and values so *sigh* here goes. As Wikipedia editors, it is our job to question and evaluate the verifiability and relibility of sources (sources = books, articles, and so on. An unpublished manuscript is unverifiable; a self-published manuscript may be unreliable). We call these documents "sources" because they are sources/origins for views. And it is our job to question and evaluate the significance of views found in these sources. That is because it is one of our core content policies, to include all significant views. We must do this, but it is up to us to do it. So let me explain to miss. anonymous that by "significant" we do not mean that I think this is rocking my world, really meaningful to me ... it means that it an important view among experts on the topic. You know, this being an encyclopedia and all. Encyclopedias presenting expert views and all. Now, speaking of stupidity, I'd say that the smart thing to do - if one takes this responsibility seriously - is to edit articles where one has some experties on the topic and knows what the sinificant views are. Or - again if one takes writing an encyclopedia seriously, if one has any respect for the project - is to admit that the less one knows about a topic, the more research one must do before editing the article. Anyone who knows anything about Marx knows that David Mclellan and Leszek Kolakowski are major scholars, whose views are highly significant (and yes, come from verifiable reliable sources). Now, James Whisker ... okay, he got his degre from Maryland and teaches at West Virginia University, so we are not talking about the top rank of scholars ... but he does have a degree and he does have an academic job ... But an expert on Marx? An expert on anti-Semitism? Nope. And his main thing on Marx is published in a journal established specifically to deny the Holocaust? Well, I think a lot of scholars would say that this already calls into question the reliability of the source.
Here is a little lesson for newbies ... it seems so obvious to me, but sometimes I wonder whether we need to enshrine this somewhere. X has a PhD. It could be James Whisker's PhD in American politics; it could be Larry Sumer's PhD in economics. It is the most wrong inference possile to infer from this that they are like the Great and Poweful Oz, experts on all things. It takes several years to research and write a thesis on a specific topic, from which we properly infer that anyone must spend several more years researching a topic to be able to write with academic rigor and academic credibility on another topic. Let me put it another way. If you had cancer, would you seek treatment from a lawyer? I mean, lawyers continue their education past college. They must be pretty smart. They sure know a lot. But no, I think we would all agree that would be pretty "stupid." It is not enough to go to a university, to get a PhD, to get an academic job, to suddenly become an oracle on all knowledge. On the contrary, this only proves that one must spend years to become an expert on a narrow topic. I have seen no reason to think Whisker's authority extends beyond American politics, especially the Civil War. I wouldn't use Kolakowski or McLellan as significant views on the US Civil War. That doesn't make them worthless to us. The reason they are no ood to us as authorities on the US Civil War is because all that time Whiskers spent studying American politics - Mclellan and Kolakowski spent researching Marx and Marxism in their historical contexts. Let's respect people for the hard work they do. Slrubenstein | Talk 19:12, 1 May 2011 (UTC)

I've got another source. The Journal of the History of Ideas, volume 42, issue no. 1, 1981 '"In the Interests of Civilization": Marxist Views of Race and Culture in the Nineteenth Century' by Diane Paul. . The Journal is published by University of Pennsylvania Press so I think it's safe to presume that the Journal has no history of antisemitism or slander of Marx. I've tried to find some information on Diane Paul but I couldn't find it, the article is of course written 30 years ago so it wouldn't be surprising if she retired before the Internet-age. But still I wonder if it is significant enough to dedicate a whole section to, antisemitism was so common in the 19th century that it was the norm rather than the exception. Besides On the Jewish Question, letters he wrote and a remark here and there it can't be said to be a large theme in his work overall.--Tomvasseur (talk) 19:47, 19 June 2011 (UTC)

It is not, and anyway, this section is not in the article, so how about we let this fringe criticism die out and be archived? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 21:00, 20 June 2011 (UTC)

Karl's mother Henrietta was aunt to Frederik Philips

"Karl's mother, born Henriëtta Pressburg, <...> was from a prosperous business family. Her family later founded the company Philips Electronics: she was aunt to Anton and Gerard Philips." This information written in this wikipedia article is incorrect.

  • A German document "Marx und Holland" of the Meunster University [12]
  • The Dutch Wikipedia article regarding Lion Philips [13]
  • Explaining some street names in Philipsdorp, a district of Eindhoven. [14] (in Dutch)
  • A letter from Karl Marx to his uncle Lion Philips [15] Starting with "Dear Uncle, I presume all of you are already or still in Aachen, and am therefore sending this letter there. Had you decided to wait for the fine weather, you'd have had to stay at Bommel until now." Bommel is the shortening of the townname Zaltbommel where the Philips family has lived.
  • Another letter from Karl Marx to his uncle Lion Philips [16]

Henrietta Pressburg self had no family ties with the Philips family. It was her sister Sophie Pressburg (or Presburg) who became tied with the Philips family as being married with Lion Philips. Thus Lion Philips was related by marriage an uncle of Karl Marx, and grandfather of Anton and Gerard Philips. One of the son's of Lion and Sophie, being the father of Gerard and Anton Philips, was Benjamin Frederik David (Frederik) Philips. So Frederik, instead of his son's Gerard and Anton, was a nephew to Henrietta Pressburg and thus a first cousin to Karl Marx. Thus Henrietta Pressburg was grand-aunt instead aunt to Gerard and Anton. -- (talk) 18:34, 9 May 2011 (UTC)

List of influences

I find the list of people "influenced" a little too promiscuous (it should be limited to people who can be sort of disciples). I tried reducing it a bit (as well as others). Including Sartre for instance as influence by him would require the addition of every modern intellectual (almost everyone who went to rue d'Ulm). Every European intellectual have had a Marx imprint; few (say Althusser) can be deemed as Marxist intellectuals. Note that I reverted an editor on Sartre since "critique de la raison dialectique" and "Question de méthode" might discuss Marxism, but Sartre's use of dialectic is far more Hegelian and one cannot be deemed a Marxist for having written about Marx. Remember Sartre's later attitude to communism and leaving the Communism party not just because of Bolchevism.Capodistria (talk) 00:43, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

1. Your claim that the critique is not inspired by Marx is ridiculous. Sartre endlessly explains why he chooses Marx's dialectic over Hegel's ("Marx was entirely right", "Marxism is the horizon to our thought" etc). Sartre also self-describes himself as a Marxist over and over again. He argues for Marx (over Hegel) in the same way he had earlier argued for Husserl (over Descartes).
2. The reason we should list Sartre under influenced is because (i) his fame/notability as a 20th century figure; (ii) the fact that he described himself as a Marxist.
3. I understand that there is some confusion, since Sartre only "converted" (his own words) to Marxism around the end of the 1940s. Prior to his conversion, he had of course been strongly influenced by Kojève's interpretation of Hegel, and this has an influence on his later Marxist writings.
4. Sartre's attitude to "really existing socialism" is a separate topic. Best, Avaya1 (talk) 02:39, 10 May 2011 (UTC)
OK, then. Recall that Sartre described himself as a lot of things (my idea about influence is someone committed to an idea and building on it, sort of a version, e.g. Althusser, etc.). But what do you do with de Beauvoir?Capodistria (talk) 10:43, 10 May 2011 (UTC)
The critique is as much of a contribution to Marxist theory as anything written by Althusser. Again, this is late-Sartre. Early Sartre was not a Marxist. Also, Sartre's late literary-biographies are not particularly Marxist. But the critique is a work of Marxist theory, and Sartre always saw it as his magnus opus (he almost killed himself writing it). Avaya1 (talk) 15:10, 11 May 2011 (UTC)

I think the best solution would be to have a list in the main body, referenced, of people he influenced. We should also keep it limited in size, to the most well-recognized names (since Marx influenced so many). It is likely we will eventually have an article about Marx's influences, and a list of people he influenced. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 16:41, 13 May 2011 (UTC)

I agree. The point is that he influenced many people in very different ways. So we have two categories, those he influenced at some point but cannot be deemed Marxists as they are categorized as something else, and others that represent Marxist thought in political science, philosophy, and economics.So the category would be called "Marxist Thinkers". Capodistria (talk) 16:20, 22 May 2011 (UTC)

At least get rid of Chomsky under 'influenced', that is just absurd that he keeps popping up there. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Xcuref1endx (talkcontribs) 20:34, 3 June 2011 (UTC)

Marx's influence was so extensive that it would be hard to name a modern thinker who was not influenced by him. Can anyone name one? TFD (talk) 21:13, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
Martin Buber. Slrubenstein | Talk 19:38, 23 June 2011 (UTC)
I should have restricted that to people who wrote about social sciences. While Marx influenced some philosophers and artists, he had little influence on natural sciences, engineering, accounting, medicine, etc. But as a socialist, Buber was certainly influenced by Marx, as this book on the makers of modern culture states (p. 76).[17] TFD (talk) 00:36, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
Marx's degree was in philosophy, so I would think his influence on "modern thinkers" in philosophy would be a resonable supposition. Be that as it may, the article you mention says thaqt Buber was influenced by Marxism, not that he was influnced by Marx, and careful scholars recognize that we have two words because they refer to two different things. Moreover, the article you link to does not provide any evidence, and I still do not see marx's influence on Buber's thought. As for social scientists, okay, how about Franz Boas or Ruth Benedict? Slrubenstein | Talk 18:25, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
Boas was a socialist who later became a Communist supporter.[18] Socialism in the U.S. was heavily influenced by Marxism. See also "Franz Boas as Citizen-Scientist: Gramscian-Marxist Influence on American Anthropology".[19] (The article greatly exaggerates the influence.) Benedict was of course Boas' student and studied Marxism with him in a group run by Moses Finkelstein. Anyway my comments were in response to listing people in the article who have been influenced by Marx. It would appear the list could be quite extensive and the criteria for inclusion may not be clear. (Should also include indirect influences?) Do you agree with me on that? TFD (talk) 19:32, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
First, being a socialist or even a communist is not the same thing as "being influenced by Marx" - next you will say Jesus was a Marxist. Second, Ballart is not an expert in the history of anthropology or Boas (and the journal is not even a leading journal in his own field), and his views are fringe (the argument is: since the professor had a communist student, the professor must be a communist. In fact, many people in NY were communists or socialists and the fact is Boas - I should to say "put the name of any professor at Columbia University in the 1930s here" - had a communist student is neither surprising nor indicative of anything. Third, that an FBI agent accused Boas of being a communist has about as much weight as you saying he was. You said all modern thinkers are influenced by Marx. Boas's extensive writings in anthropology do not show any influence of Marx. You have provided no evidence to the contrary. You also have not shown that Marx had any influence over Benedict. You are right that we need criteria for inclusion in any list of scholars influenced by Marx. Your claim that everyone was influenced by Marx is not helpful. That you think Boas and Benedict's work or thought were influenced by Marx just shows how colossally ignorant you are about Marx and about 20th century social science. The issue is Marx's influence and you have quickly turned it into "did x know somebody who knew of Marx." hardly a constructive way to move forward. Slrubenstein | Talk 20:31, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
I suppose it is possible to be a Marxist or influenced by Marxism but not be influenced by Marx. I did say modern btw and Marx's influence on modern social sciences mostly came following the war, while all your examples were of people whose views had been developed long before. TFD (talk) 22:47, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
Fair enough - I think you are probably right about post-war influence. Slrubenstein | Talk 14:48, 25 June 2011 (UTC)
    • ^ See Development of Capitalism in Russia written in 1899 by V.I. Lenin and contained in Lenin: Collected Works, Volume 3 (Progress Publishers: Moscow, 1972) p. 21.
    • ^ Ibid. p. 70.
    • ^ Ibid. p. 380.
    • ^ "We have always proclaimed and repeated this elementary truth of Marxism, that the victory of socialism requires the joint efforts of workers in a number of advanced countries" (Lenin, Sochineniya (Works), 5th ed Vol XLIV p418, February 1922. Stalin made the same point until Lenin's death).
    • ^ Jacobs, Jack (2005). "Marx, Karl (1818–1883)". In Levy, Richard S. Antisemitism: A Historical Encyclopedia of Prejudice and Persecution. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO. pp.  446–447. ISBN 1851094393. 
    • ^ Lewis, Bernard (1999). Semites and Anti-Semites: An Inquiry into Conflict and Prejudice. New York: W. W. Norton & Company. pp.  112. ISBN 0393318397. 
    • ^ Flannery, Edward H. (2004). The Anguish of the Jews: Twenty-Three Centuries of Antisemitism. Mahwah, NY: Paulist Press. pp.  168. ISBN 0809127024. 
    • ^ On The Jewish Question by Karl Marx
    • ^ Iain Hampsher-Monk, A History of Modern Political Thought (1992), Blackwell Publishing, p. 496
    • ^ Wheen, F., Karl Marx, p. 55-56
    • ^ McLellan 1980, p.142
    • ^ Sacks, Jonathan (1997). The Politics of Hope. London: Jonathan Cape. pp. 98–108. ISBN 9780224043298.