The Communist Manifesto and Animal Farm
The Communist Manifesto and Animal Farm are both historical documents which vividly reflected the most important socio-economic contradictions and political motions that occurred in the last 2 centuries. Both works can be stated to be part of a continuum of the struggle between ideologies and socio-economic system– of perpetuating commercialism and developing communism in societies the world over.
The Communist Manifesto was the defining work of Karl Marx, the daddy of clinical socialism and dialectical materialism, which articulated the rallying cry for freedom of the working class and the proletariat in 19th century Europe, at a time when the theory of socialism and communism was at its infancy.
George Orwell’s Animal Farm, on the other hand, can be deemed a scathing repudiation of the sort of political and socio-economic system Communism had ended up being under the management of Josef Stalin, which was absolutely different from how Marx and Lenin pictured it to be.
In all of these, it is clear that both the Communist Manifesto and Animal Farm are adequate historic signposts to clarify the path the Communist ideology took in the last 2 centuries, and whether it stayed honest to its end goal of liberating the working class from the yoke of hardship, exploitation and oppression.
This paper will look for to describe and discuss major contemporary political, social, or economic events that affected the writings of Marx and Orwell when these 2 works were released.
The Communist Manifesto
The opening line of the manifesto mentions a specter that haunts Europe– the specter of Communism. Marx likewise explains, using historical materialism, the necessity for the proletariat of the world to rise in revolution– to smash the capitalist system and establish socialism as a stage of shift prior to communism.
It speaks of the dialectic in between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, both of which represent antagonistic interests and contradictions which will never ever be fixed despite promises of greater salaries and much better living conditions for individuals, notwithstanding describing the basic difference in between proletarians and a communists in which both do not have contradicting interests, only that the latter is the most advanced and resolute of the working class in damaging the bondage of their slavery to capital.
The Manifesto likewise talked about the different kinds of socialism that existed in the history of the world prior to the development of the theory of clinical socialism by Marx and Engels in which it was concluded that all theories and kinds of socialism that existed failed since it was not based on deep theoretical understanding of the dialectics in between classes and the relations of productions throughout history– from the development of a servant society to feudalism till the establishment of the capitalist system in Europe.
Nevertheless, the apparent basis for writing the Communist Manifesto stems from the excesses of the explosion of the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century, in which peasants who gathered to the cities to operate in the factories were significantly exploited by capitalist owners of the factories, through exceptionally low earnings and poor working conditions, as the eight-hour workday was yet to be struggled forth by the proletariat.
More so, the world has been altering drastically by the start of the 19th century, particularly when the Reign of terror ended up being effective in dismantling the feudal lands of the French monarchy and freed the peasants from their chains to the land– signifying completion of an old and rotten financial system and the entry of a brand-new one– capitalism.
The economic factors of the colonial system also corresponded to the birth of capitalism as the dominant economic system as the industries produced a lot of items to the extent that the colonial system became the repository of surplus items which might not be offered in Europe– planting the seeds of what would now be known as contemporary imperialism.
On the other hand, an unlikely admission was offered by the Manifesto– that at a certain duration in the history of humankind, the bourgeois themselves was a revolutionary force as the masses that took apart feudalism from the monarchies and proprietors.
This reality is an essential aspect of the Manifesto because it revealed the loose alliance between capitalists and the toiling masses, insofar as changing the ways of production, only to damage such an alliance when the capitalists themselves are now in the reins of power.
The Communist Manifesto was likewise composed as a review of the other socialist theories and programs that existed prior to Marx’s clinical socialism, such as reactionary socialism, conservative socialism, and critical-utopian socialism.
Marx concluded that all of these failed to truly establish socialism as the leaders and fans of these movements do not basically look for to take apart the capitalist system in the nations in which it exists however just offer false hopes of liberation to the masses.
The Communists, on the other hand, are the only political motion out there that really works for the basic interests of the working class, having a hard time for their immediate goals and ultimately looking after the future of that entire class of oppressed and exploited individuals.
George Orwell’s Animal Farm was composed at a time when the Soviet Union was under the management of Josef Stalin, in which the Russian Transformation was turning into a headache to the Russian people and all other nationalities that soon after signed up with the Iron Curtain. The book was fable that had really obvious recommendations to historic figures of the communist movement such as Leon Trotsky, Stalin, Marx and Lenin.
It depicted the communists as a motion in betrayal of the foundations of classical Marxist theory and practice of liberating the proletariat from exploitation and oppression as Stalin, in his long years in power, had actually been hectic purging the Communist Celebration of traitors and sending rich peasants and landowners to gulags to be tortured and executed by the Red Army.
No less than Leon Trotsky (Snowball in the Animal Farm), the Soviet Union’s most brilliant military tactician, was believed to have been bought executed by Stalin.
On the other hand, the Animal Farm likewise illustrated the political contradictions between the Soviet Union and the capitalist states such as the Russian Civil War when soldiers from capitalist states tried to eliminate Bolsheviks from power shortly after the October Transformation, notwithstanding the tacit collusion between Nazi Germany and Stalin in 1939, prior to the betrayal of Hitler of his promise of non-invasion of the Soviet Union.
The Animal Farm also showed how the people under intense Stalinist repression struggled forth and asserted their rights versus the Soviet totalitarian especially when peasants damaged their farming items rather of providing these to the federal government. However, these battles by the masses versus a leader that apparently represented their interests were consulted with heightened forms of repression through torture, executions and required disappearances, apparently perpetrated by Soviet security forces led by the KGB.
When Animal Farm was written, the Soviet Union was the only worker’s state out there in a world that was dominated by capitalist countries and its colonies and neo-colonies. World War Two had actually just ended the Chinese Transformation of Mao Tsetung had yet to develop its grip in Asia.
But in a brief span of decades after the glorious transformation in 1917, the pledge of communism appeared more dreadful than the excesses and hardship that covered much of the capitalist world, especially throughout the time of Stalin. Under his reign of horror, the hope for a better life and a much better world for the peasants and the employees became simply a pipeline dream with Stalin becoming no different from the Tsar and capitalists in other states in regards to oppression and exploitation to the extent of absolutely dismantling the standard tenets of Marx and Lenin integrated.
Rather of the state withering away as Lenin anticipated, Stalin developed an authorities state and an overarching bureaucracy that managed most of individuals’s lives. Rather of producing more farming and commercial output as a result of socialist collectivization, hunger and poverty was an everyday truth inside the Soviet Union during his time. Under Stalin, it can securely be assumed that the conditions were nearly comparable to the sorrowful conditions during the despotism of the tsars.
The Guarantee Continues?
The 2 historical works presented the theory and practice of communism in 2 really various methods– communism in theory as Marx forecasted, and communism in concrete practice under the leadership of Josef Stalin. In the context of present financial contradictions of the world capitalist order and the failures of the Soviet Union, it can not still be safely said that the ideology is dead, as the working individuals of the world have yet to find another option to communism that would really protect their essential interests and rights.
However, it must be unequivocally stated that the theory of communism can never ever be left into the hands of tyrants and despots as it would absolutely betray the function of the nature of communist battle and society as a class in struggle for the building of better world and a better future. By handing power to tyrants, even communist societies end up being no various from slave societies, feudal lands and capitalist orders in which the people– the masses– are forever made use of and oppressed by those at holding the reins of power.
Marx, Karl & & Engels, Frederick. The Communist Manifesto. 1847.
Orwell, George. Animal Farm. United Kingdom: Secker and Warburg, 1945.