Marx Historical Materialism Essay

Marx Historical Materialism Essay-85
For them, the materialist and idealist views were irreconcilably opposed throughout the historical development of philosophy. All things contain contradictory sides or aspects, whose tension or conflict is the driving force of change and eventually transforms or dissolves them.They adopted a thoroughgoing materialist approach, holding that any attempt to combine or reconcile materialism with idealism must result in confusion and inconsistency. But whereas Hegel saw change and development as the expression of the world spirit, or Idea, realizing itself in nature and in human society, for Marx and Engels change was inherent in the nature of the material world.Religion, handed down by past generations, served as always as the theoretical basis and justification for the perpetuation of old class relations.

The criticism of the young bourgeois intelligentsia was directed mainly against religion and Hegelian philosophy.

Hegelian philosophy in which the self-development of the creates the world and then, as the developing world, enters the consciousness of men, was the philosophical guise suited to the Christianity of the Restoration after 1815.

Here he was drawn into the practical problems of the political and social struggles.

So well did he conduct the fight that after one year of publication the paper was banned by the state.

They did not deny the reality of mental or spiritual processes but affirmed that ideas could arise, therefore, only as products and reflections of material conditions. In opposition to the “metaphysical” mode of thought, which viewed things in abstraction, each by itself and as though endowed with fixed properties, Hegelian dialectics considers things in their movements and changes, interrelations and interactions.

Marx and Engels understood materialism as the opposite of idealism, by which they meant any theory that treats matter as dependent on mind or spirit, or mind or spirit as capable of existing independently of matter. Everything is in continual process of becoming and ceasing to be, in which nothing is permanent but everything changes and is eventually superseded.

They therefore held that one could not, as Hegel tried, deduce the actual course of events from any “principles of dialectics”; the principles must be inferred from the events.theory of knowledge of Marx and Engels started from the materialist premise that all knowledge is derived from the senses.

But against the mechanist view that derives knowledge exclusively from given sense impressions, they stressed the dialectical development of human knowledge, socially acquired in the course of practical activity.

This conception is common to all “schools of materialism.” What distinguishes Marxism materialism from other schools must be learned from its various polemical works dealing with practical questions of politics and society.

To Marx materialistic thought was a working method.


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