Biography Of Karl Marx Essay

1432 words - 6 pages

Biography of Karl Marx

Karl Marx, the author of the Communist Manifesto, is viewed to be one of the greatest social thinkers of his time. His social, political and economical thoughts are still highly regarded today. The life of this man is stamped with many accomplishments and ideas that have been adopted by many prominent figures. As a historian, philosopher, and revolutionary, Karl Marx has helped shaped the society of the past, present and future.

Karl Marx was born in Trier, Germany on May 5, 1818. He was born to Heinrich Marx and his wife, Henrietta who had a total of seven children. They were a middle class family who came from a long lineage of rabbis. However, his family was baptized Protestant in order for his dad to keep his job as a practicing lawyer.[1] At an early age, Marx’s next-door neighbor became an influential model for Marx and eventually a future father-in-law.[2]

Marx’s intellectual career began in 1835 at the age of seventeen at the University of Boon where he was to study law. Not more than a year after his arrival at Boon he was arrested for drunkenness and was injured in a brawl.[3] Also at this time he became secretly engaged to his childhood sweetheart, Jenny Von Westphalen. Outraged by his actions, his father forced him to transfer and begin a more serious academic career at the University of Berlin. His father voiced his opinion in a letter to Marx “ degeneration in a learned dressing-gown with uncombed hair has replaced degeneration with a drinking glass.[4] On October 22, 1837, he became officially engaged to Jenny and would ritually write her a letter telling about his life at school.[5]

Shortly after his arrival at Berlin he joined the Hegelian Doktor Klub, which influenced him to shift concentrations from law to philosophy. Among this group were theologians such as David Fredrich Strauss and Bruno Bauer. This group became politically oppressed due to its critique of Christianity and its oppression towards the Prussian government. Marx had intentions of teaching side by side with Bauer at the University, however this idea was shot down when Bauer was fired. Bauer was already not on very good standings with the school or the government. After he took part in demonstrations in the parliament the government asked him to resign.[6] With no hope of a career in teaching philosophy he completed his doctoral thesis and received a degree from the University of Jeena in 1841.[7] His interest now shifted to journalism.

In Cologne, Marx began to write on social, political, and philosophical issues for the Rheinishce Zeitung. In October 1842 Marx became editor of this liberal newspaper. [8] Around this time censorship in the Prussian Government became increasingly strong. Marx, however, continued in his style of writing and published a series of articles that dealt with the “poverty of wine-growers in the Moselle valley”.[9] This set...

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