Karl Marx (1818–1883) was a German philosopher and sociologist whose scientific approach to history, combined with his revolutionary socialism, has made him one of the most influential, famous, and indeed infamous, intellectuals who ever lived.
His major works were The Communist Manifesto (1848) and Capital (1867). The first was written during the Revolutions of 1848, and aimed to explain the political program of the Communist Party to a popular audience. The second was much more serious. Socialists had long believed they had both morality and science on their side, but Marx seemed to prove it, for his critique of capitalism was situated within a theory that explained the entire human past, and also predicted the future. In other words, it was a genuine science of history, just as Newton had established for physics and Darwin for biology.
Part of a Series on Philosophy of History
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