New York: Quill, 1985 Wesson, Robert. Why Marxism? New York: Basic Books, 1976 Works Consulted Farah, Mounir A. and Karls, Andrea B. World History, The Human Experience. New York: Glencoe McGraw-Hill, 1997.
Marx acknowledged the growing individualism that Tocqueville had identified, but underestimated it and he ignored the possibility by which through democracy the wealthy could be isolated and ignored peaceably. According to Marx, "The weapons with which the bourgeoisie felled feudalism to the ground are now turned against the bourgeoisie itself. But not only has the bourgeoisie forged the weapons that bring death to itself; it has also called into existence the men who are to wield these weapons ? the modern working class ? the proletarians."
Marx’s Alienation of Labour There is deep substance and many common themes that arose throughout Marx’s career as a philosopher and political thinker. A common expressed notion throughout his and Fredrick Engels work consists of contempt for the industrial capitalist society that was growing around him during the industrial revolution. Capitalism according to Marx is a “social system with inherent exploitation and injustice”. (Pappenheim, p. 81) It is a social system, which intrinsically hinders all of its participants and specifically debilitates the working class. Though some within the capitalist system may benefit with greater monetary gain and general acquisition of wealth, the structure of the system is bound to alienate all its participants.
Laborers got the short end of immense deals, which ultimately stirred up historic rebellions. Employees were paid severely low wages in exchange for their hard labor. Work days were lengthy and took place in hazardous conditions. The institution of big businesses made the average worker feel as if they were unimportant and had no say in his work place. These problems led to the creation of labor unions, which would conduct worker strikes to reform labor laws.
Immigrants came in search of riches but they were soon to find out that wealth was not what they received. The industrial revolution brought huge numbers of new immigrants from every part of the world. By the end of the century, nearly 30 percent of the residents of major cities were foreign-born. Their arrival to America brought the laborers that the industries and factories needed. Their arrival also created unsightly racial and ethnic tensions.
The Marx-Engels Reader. Ed. Robert C. Tucker. 2nd ed. New York: Norton, 1978.