Virginia Bryant's Reviews > Love and Capital: Karl and Jenny Marx and the Birth of a Revolution

Love and Capital by Mary Gabriel
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's review
Nov 05, 2011

really liked it

This seems an especially appropriate time to review seeds of former revolutions, for in knowledge of history there is wisdom. In the minds of the masses, the ideals and concepts of Marxism have been pretty much destroyed by Lenin and Stalin. No conceptual framework for new forms of living can succeed without a corresponding change in our values toward the the sacral spirit in all life, which is another subject. That said, those with the most power have consistently and successfully sought to spoil the potentials of this theory and related movements by associating them with those that were only too eager to use its rhetoric partially to assume more of the same power themselves.

This is a fascinating story of the price society extracts from those compelled to change it. This is a wonderfully historic and personal view of europe and england in the 1800's, which were very hard times to live in indeed, with horrible living conditions for most.. "Das Kapital" was the first searing indictment of capitalism and its crimes against nature, made much more comprehensible with inclusions of the well researched personal lives of Karl & Jenny Marx and their children.

From "Capital" Marx wrote, "Capital is dead labor, that, vampire like, only lives by sucking living labor, and lives the more, the more labor it sucks."
From his beginnings as a Hegelian philosopher, through constant battles with various repressive presses, to the start and growth of the communist party, (which is nothing so malevolent as we've been led to believe) through labour activism and how his children carried that on, and especially his partnerships with his patron Engels, this is a great look at a unique individual and his effect on history.

"Freedom consists in converting the state from an organ superimposed upon society into one completely subordinate to it" and, on "revolutionary transformation".... "a political transition period in which the state can be nothing but (highlighted in the text) the revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat". Is this not similar to what we are still struggling to achieve? We can only hope it is possible!

Throughout this work, Marx's solidarity with the proletariat is highlighted again and again, though it is true he tried to position his daughters in a more conventional position, having no desire to have them experience the agonies of poverty he had experienced as a result of commitment to revolutionary ideals.

I had tried to slog through "CAPITAL" and it was agonizingly difficult. I was glad to get a more humanly understandable take on his work through this book. Highly recommend.
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