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     Volume 4 Issue 52 | July 1, 2005 |

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A Little About Marxism

1.Part of Marx's basic understanding of the world was that the development of anything in the material universe, be it an organism, an idea, or a society, is driven by the struggle between opposing forces contained within it. What was the name given to this idea?
*Surplus value
2.The "direct theoretical premise" of Marx's ideas on development and change was the work of another philosopher, though Marx had to turn this philosopher's ideas "right side up" in order to apply them to material reality. What was this philosopher's name?
3.The struggle between which two opposing forces did Marx say was the main contradiction within capitalist society?
*the bourgeoisie and the proletariat
*the workers and the peasants
*Christianity and Atheism
*unionised workers and non-unionised workers
4.Complete this sentence from one of Marx's early works: "The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways;____________"
*the standpoint of the new is human society, or socialised humanity.
*but the human essence is no abstraction inherent in each single individual.
*the dispute over the reality or non-reality of thinking isolated from practice is a purely scholastic question.
*the point, however, is to change it.

5.Marx was the first to rigorously examine the workings of the capitalist system and uncover the mechanics of exploitation. Marx discovered that workers are only paid for a portion of what they produce--basically enough for them to survive and work another day. The rest of what they produce is appropriated by the capitalist. What is this appropriated amount called?
*labour power
*surplus value
*socially necessary labour
6.Complete the following: "The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of ___________"
*ceaseless oppression
*class struggle
*uninterrupted progress
*the works of great men
7.Which famous text, authored by Marx with Frederick Engels, begins with the sentence, "A spectre is haunting Europe--the spectre of Communism"?
*The Manifesto of the Communist Party
*Theses on Feuerbach
*The Civil War in France
8.True or false: Marx felt that capitalists could eventually come to an agreement with workers to pay them "a fair day's wage for a fair day's work," an arrangement that would satisfy all parties.
9.True or false: Marx thoroughly analysed imperialism as the main enemy of the working class.
10.The communist revolution, which Marx held was the key to the liberation of humanity, represented and required "radical ruptures" with what two kinds of traditions?
*family values and elections
*religion and democracy
*traditional property relations and traditional ideas
*patriarchy and the state


As Mao later summed it up, "Marxist philosophy holds that the law of the unity of opposites is the fundamental law of the universe. This law operates universally, whether in the natural world, in human society, or in man's thinking."
The difference between Hegel's view and that of Marx is that to Hegel, matter is an imperfect manifestation of the perfect (divine) ideal, whereas for Marx, ideas arise in the minds of humans through their interaction with material reality. Hence Marx's theory came to be known as "materialist dialectics" to distinguish it from Hegel's "idealist" dialectics.
3.the bourgeoisie and the proletariat
The bourgeoisie and the proletariat have fundamentally different interests. The bourgeoisie favours maintaining the inherently unequal and exploitative conditions of a capitalist system, and the interests of the proletariat are in overturning that system.
4.the point, however, is to change it.
Marx was no armchair philosopher. He acted to transform the unjust conditions of the working classes, and urged others to do so. All of the above quotes are from the short and very pithy "Theses on Feuerbach".
5.surplus value
he surplus value is what the capitalist sticks in his pocket after he's paid the worker.
6.class struggle
Marxist thought rejects the notion that "great men" are the makers of history--instead, Marxism holds that it is the masses of the people, in their struggle against the oppressing classes, who make history.
7.The Manifesto of the Communist Party
Published in 1848 in English, French, German, Italian, Flemish, and Danish. It is also the source for the quote, ""The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggle."
Marx understood that the very workings of capitalism compelled capitalists to always seek the lowest cost in all their materials, including labour, and that the only way out of such a set up for the proletariat was the revolutionary overthrow of capitalism itself.
Not really. Imperialism as we now understand it didn't exist yet. During Marx's life, capitalism was still marked by competition between smaller-scale exploiters. It was not until nearly the turn of the twentieth century that the relatively robust competition between smaller capitalists enterprises turned into its opposite, monopoly capitalism, or imperialism, which gobbled up all smaller competitors. This, as Lenin analysed, represented an entirely new stage of capitalism--but that's another quiz altogether.
10.traditional property relations and traditional ideas
Correctly understood, the other answers partially answer the question, but in the fullest sense, the liberation of the working class, taken up by the workers themselves, requires an intense wrangling with ideas in a scientific way. In order to do that, all old, dogmatic ways of thinking and ways of relating to each other must be criticised, and all oppressive systems need to be tossed out.

Source: Funtrivia.com

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