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Karl Marx: the Communist Manifesto (Excerpt)


The opening section of Karl Marx's iconic Communist Manifesto provides one theory about the way free market, command, and mixed economies work. Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations presents another theory of economic systems.

Karl Marx developed many of his theories during the height of the Industrial Revolution, when economic systems and the nature of labor was changing radically. His work was published in 1848 - sometimes dubbed the "Year of Revolution" - which was a time of great social unrest. In this excerpt, Marx outlines the way class struggle has impacted the history of society and the economy. He begins by discussing feudalism, and moves to his views of the industrialization happening in 1848.

According to Marx, who are the bourgeois? What are the problems with a "constantly expanding market"? How does Marx compare with Adam Smith?

Source: Karl Marx, The Communist Manifesto, 1948.

How to Cite This Source
Karl Marx, "Karl Marx: the Communist Manifesto (Excerpt)," in Virginia Civics, Item #549, (accessed January 27, 2022).
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