Influences on Karl Marx

Influences On Karl Marx

Influences on Karl Marx

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Influences on Karl Marx are commonly referred to as deriving from three sources: German idealist philosophy, French socialism, and English & Scottish political economy. Although this "three sources" model is an oversimplification, it still has some measure of truth.

German philosophy

Immanuel Kant

Immanuel Kant is believed to have had the greatest influence of any philosopher of modern times. Kantian philosophy was the basis on which the structure of Marxism was built - particularly as it was developed by Hegel. Hegel's dialectical method, which was taken up by Karl Marx, was an extension of the method of reasoning by “antinomies” that Kant used.

G. W. F. Hegel

G. W. F. Hegel, by the time of his death, was the most prominent philosopher in Germany. His views were widely taught, and his students were highly regarded. His followers soon divided into right-wing and left-wing Hegelians. Theologically and politically the right-wing Hegelians offered a conservative interpretation of his work. They emphasized the compatibility between Hegel's philosophy and Christianity. Politically, they were orthodox. The left-wing Hegelians eventually moved to an atheistic position. In politics, many of them became revolutionaries. This historically important left-wing group included Ludwig Feuerbach, Bruno Bauer, Friedrich Engels, and Marx. They were often referred to as the Young Hegelians.

Marx's view of history, which...
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