January 21 2014
GER150 Lecture 3
Marx and Engels, The Communist Manifesto (158-176), Capital, chapter
on “Commodity and its Fetishism” (216—243)
*Video: - Fantasia”- “The Sorcerers Apprentice” (about 3 minutes in)
• Term in Communist manifesto - “sorcerer”
• What he was referring to wasThe Sorcerer’s Apprentice, (a poem by Goethe)
• What happens when you can’t control labour (relations)
• Pg. 210-11 In reader.
• Engels and Marx’s Communist Manifesto - most inﬂuential text. Straightforward (scheme
of history), enthusiastic. Easy to digest narrative. Like a plot summary of Capital. Gets to
• “a spectre is haunting Europe, the spectre of Communism.” quote. Communism is like a
spectre- it comes out of the dark of repression, and therefore strikes fear, among
bourgeoise of a possible revolution. An anxiety about communism haunting Europe.
Potentially explosive counter-pressure is in the air.
• Workers are not yet powerful, but by acknowledging them and being anxious about it, they
are given power. Marxist dialectical argument. Draws the opposition into his argument.
• Talks about a history of class struggles. Pre-feudal, feudal, manufacturing...
• States are just representatives of the bourgeoise’s interests
• Societal belief systems are dissolved into economical relationships
• pg. 161-162 “all that is solid melts into air...” --> Bourg. has reduced even family relations
into money relations.
• Today - invention of the “modern” family (average of 1.5 children).
• the Bourgeoisie cannot exist without constantly revolutionizing the means of production...
it has to be driven further.
• slaves of machinery, appendages to the machines.We are slaves to the machines.
• people today get more tired using computers than typewriters (paradox)
• the more complicated the machinery, the more eﬃcient the exploitation
• There is no choice... externally forced to use this system to remain competitive.You can’t
opt out of it.
• considers connection between capitalism, colonialism and imperialism.
• for marx, human nature is shapeable.
• two parts to his writings - urgency to do something now, or letting things run its inevitable
• Only 10% or less of people actually do own private p