Marx & Friends in their own words
Giving you all the quotations that Marxists hope you never hear about
Saturday, April 30, 2005
I have now finished the quotes from Marx that I wanted to put up but I still have a few quotes about Marx from others that may be of interest:
EVEN MARX'S KINDLY FATHER SUSPECTED THAT KARL WAS NOT MUCH OF A HUMAN BEING
Written when Karl was still only 19. Heinrich seems to have been a decent and generous guy. It must have pained him greatly to see how his son turned out.
Letter from Heinrich Marx to son Karl, written in Trier, March 2, 1837: "It is remarkable that I, who am by nature a lazy writer, become quite inexhaustible when I have to write to you. I will not and cannot conceal my weakness for you. At times my heart delights in thinking of you and your future. And yet at times I cannot rid myself of ideas which arouse in me sad forebodings and fear when I am struck as if by lightning by the thought: is your heart in accord with your head, your talents? Has it room for the earthly but gentler sentiments which in this vale of sorrow are so essentially consoling for a man of feeling? And since that heart is obviously animated and governed by a demon not granted to all men, is that demon heavenly or Faustian? Will you ever -- and that is not the least painful doubt of my heart -- will you ever be capable of truly human, domestic happiness? Will -- and this doubt has no less tortured me recently since I have come to love a certain person [Jenny von Westfalen] like my own child -- will you ever be capable of imparting happiness to those immediately around you?
Friday, April 29, 2005
ENGELS ADVOCATES THAT GERMANY DEFEAT FRANCE BY ANY MEANS POSSIBLE
Engels to August Bebel In Berlin, 19 September, 1891: "In any case we must declare that since 1871 we have always been ready for a peaceful understanding with France, that as soon as our Party comes to power it will be unable to exercise that power unless Alsace-Lorraine freely determines its own future, but that if war is forced upon us, and moreover a war in alliance with Russia, we must regard this as an attack on our existence and defend ourselves by every method, utilising all positions at our disposal and therefore Metz and Strasbourg also..... so our army will have to lead and sustain the main push.... So much seems certain to me: if we are beaten, every barrier to chauvinism and a war of revenge in Europe will be thrown down for years hence. If we are victorious our Party will come into power. The victory of Germany is therefore the victory of the revolution, and if it comes to war we must not only desire victory but further it by every means...."
Thursday, April 28, 2005
ENGELS FORESAW AND WELCOMED WORLD WAR
Engels, London, December 15, 1887: “. . . No war is any longer possible for Prussia-Germany except a world war and a world war indeed of an extent and violence hitherto undreamt of. Eight to ten millions of soldiers will massacre one another and in doing so devour the whole of Eurepe until they have stripped it barer than any swarm of locusts has ever done. The devastations of the Thirty Years’ War compressed into three or four years, and spread over the whole Continent; famine, pestilence, general demoralisation both of the armies and of the mass of the people produced by acute distress; hopeless confusion of our artificial machinery in trade, industry and credit, ending in general bankruptcy; collapse of the old states and their traditional state wisdom to such an extent that crowns will roll by dozens on the pavement and there will be no body to pick them up; absolute impossibility of foreseeing how it will all end and who will come out of the struggle as victor; only one result is absolutely certain: general exhaustion and the establishment of the conditions for the ultimate victory of the working class.
Some context here
Wednesday, April 27, 2005
MARX SAW FUTURE WARS AS RACE WARS
And Hitler again waged exactly the war that Marx predicted
Marx, SECOND ADDRESS On The War To the Members of the International Working-Men’s Association, 1870: "If the fortune of her arms, the arrogance of success, and dynastic intrigue lead Germany to a spoliation of French territory, there will then only remain two courses open to her. She must at all risks become the avowed tool of Russian aggrandisement, or, after some short respite, make again ready for another “defensive” war, not one of those new-fangled “localised” wars, but a war of races — a war with the combined Slavonian and Roman races".
Tuesday, April 26, 2005
MARX: GERMANS SHOULD THRASH THE FRENCH
I guess Hitler got that message too
Marx to Engels, July 20, 1870: "The French need a thrashing. If the Prussians win, the centralisation of the state power will be useful for the centralisation of the German working class. German predominance would also transfer the centre of gravity of the workers' movement in Western Europe from France to Germany, and one has only to compare the movement in the two countries from 1866 till now to see that the German working class is superior to the French both theoretically and organisationally. Their predominance over the French on the world stage would also mean the predominance of our theory over Proudhon's, etc."
Monday, April 25, 2005
WAR AGAINST RUSSIA A GOOD THING FOR GERMANY
And Hitler carried it out
Neue Rheinische Zeitung No. 42, July 12, 1848: "Only a war against Russia would be a war of revolutionary Germany, a war by which she could cleanse herself of her past sins, could take courage, defeat her own autocrats, spread civilisation by the sacrifice of her own sons as becomes a people that is shaking off the chains of long, indolent slavery"
It is not clear whether it was Marx or Engels that wrote this. Context here
Sunday, April 24, 2005
MARX THOUGHT WAR WAS A GOOD THING
As did many others in the 19th and early 20th centuries -- including Mussolini, Hitler and "Progressive" U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt
Marx, Sept 24, 1855: "The redeeming feature of war is that it puts a nation to the test. As exposure to the atmosphere reduces all mummies to instant dissolution, so war passes supreme judgment upon social systems that have outlived their vitality".
(Full context for this quote does not appear to be available online but it is mentioned in various places on the net -- e.g. here. See also Collected Works, vol. 14, p. 516)
Saturday, April 23, 2005
ENGELS MAKES IT CLEAR WHAT HE MEANS BY "NIGGER"
Marx's second daughter, Laura, married Paul Lafargue who, Engels said, had "one eighth or one twelfth Nigger blood". In 1887, Paul was a candidate for the Paris Municipal Council, in a district which contained the Jardin des Plantes and the Zoo. In a letter to Laura (April 26, 1887), Engels referred to:
"Paul, the candidate of the Jardin des Plantes - and the animals" and added: "Being in his quality as a nigger a degree nearer to the rest of the animal kingdom than the rest of us, he is undoubtedly the most appropriate representative of that district."
This letter (in German translation) is in Marx & Engels Werke vol. 36, 1967, p. 645. It is not online but is mentioned here
Friday, April 22, 2005
ENGELS WAS CONTEMPTUOUS OF "NIGGERS"
Letter from Engels to Marx, October 2, 1866: "I have arrived at the conviction that there is nothing to his [Tremaux's] theory if for no other reason than because he neither understands geology nor is capable of the most ordinary literary historical criticism. One could laugh oneself sick about his stories of the nigger Santa Maria and of the transmutations of the whites into Negroes. Especially, that the traditions of the Senegal niggers deserve absolute credulity, just because the rascals cannot write! . . . Perhaps this man will prove in the second volume, how he explains the fact, that we Rhinelanders have not long ago turned into idiots and niggers on our own Devonian Transition rocks . . . Or perhaps he will maintain that we are real niggers."
(Not fully online. Source: Quoted by Diane Paul, "'In the Interests of Civilization': Marxist Views of Race and Culture in the Nineteenth Century", Journal of the History of Ideas, Jan-March 1981, p 123. [Werke, Vol. 31, p 256.])
Note that Engels uses both the neutral term "negroes" and the derogatory "nigger". So he clearly knew what the different implications of the two terms were. "Nigger" was not as verboten in the 19th century as it is now but it was still derogatory -- and it is presumably because of that aspect of the word that both Marx and Engels used what is after all an English word in their German writings.
To undersrtand what Engels was talking about, one needs to realize that both Marx and Engels were Lamarckians -- they believed that acquired characteristics could be inherited. That fact is no doubt part of the reason why Stalin so heavily sponsored the ideas of the Lamarckian Trofim Lysenko right into the 20th century -- long after Lamarckian theories had been generally discredited in the West. And the particular strand of Lamarckian thinking that appealed most strongly to both Marx and Engels was that the type of soil and landscape in which a nation grew up could influence their national character. Just what the relationship between geology and national characteristics was, however, they did not fully agree. The following commentary on the matter may also be helpful:
To cite one final anecdote, the scholarly literature frequently cites Marx's great enthusiasm (until the more scientifically savvy Engels set him straight) for a curious book, published in 1865 by the now (and deservedly) unknown French explorer and ethnologist Pierre Tremaux, Origine et transformations de l'homme et des autres etres (Origin and transformation of man and other beings). Marx professed ardent admiration for this work, proclaiming it "einen Fortschritt uber Darwin" (an advance over Darwin). The more sober Engels bought the book at Marx's urging, but then dampened his friend's ardor by writing: "I have arrived at the conclusion that there is nothing to his theory if for no other reason than because he neither understands geology nor is capable of the most ordinary literary historical criticism."
Thursday, April 21, 2005
MARX SUPPORTED BLACK SLAVERY IN AMERICA
Letter from Marx to Pavel Vasilyevich Annenkov, 1846: "As for slavery, there is no need for me to speak of its bad aspects. The only thing requiring explanation is the good side of slavery. I do not mean indirect slavery, the slavery of proletariat; I mean direct slavery, the slavery of the Blacks in Surinam, in Brazil, in the southern regions of North America.
Wednesday, April 20, 2005
ENGELS APPROVES OF ANTISEMITISM
Engels to Paul Lafargue, July 22, 1892: "I begin to understand French anti-Semitism when I see how many Jews of Polish origin and with German names intrude themselves everywhere, arrogate everything to themselves and push themselves forward to the point of creating public opinion in the ville lumiere [Paris], of which the Paris philistine is so proud and which he believes to be the supreme power in the universe."
(Not online but found in Frederick Engels, Paul and Laura Lafargue, Correspondence, Vol iii, Moscow. p 184.)
Tuesday, April 19, 2005
ENGELS: POLISH JEWS GET A BLAST
Engels, The Condition of the Working Class in England, 1886 Appendix to the American Edition: "The pettifogging business-tricks of the Polish Jew, the representative in Europe of commerce in its lowest stage, those tricks that serve him so well in his own country, and are generally practiced there, he finds to be out of date and out of place when he comes to Hamburg or Berlin"
Monday, April 18, 2005
MARX SUPPORTED BRITISH RULE OVER INDIA
Marx, New-York Daily Tribune, June 25, 1853: "England, it is true, in causing a social revolution in Hindoostan, was actuated only by the vilest interests, and was stupid in her manner of enforcing them. But that is not the question. The question is, can mankind fulfil its destiny without a fundamental revolution in the social state of Asia? If not, whatever may have been the crimes of England she was the unconscious tool of history in bringing about that revolution".
Sunday, April 17, 2005
ENGELS CELEBRATED THE CONQUEST OF NORTH AFRICAN ARABS BY THE FRENCH
For once I think he was right
Engels in The Northern Star January 22, 1848: "Upon the whole it is, in our opinion, very fortunate that the Arabian chief has been taken. The struggle of the Bedouins was a hopeless one, and though the manner in which brutal soldiers, like Bugeaud, have carried on the war is highly blamable, the conquest of Algeria is an important and fortunate fact for the progress of civilisation. The piracies of the Barbaresque states, never interfered with by the English government as long as they did not disturb their ships, could not be put down but by the conquest of one of these states. And the conquest of Algeria has already forced the Beys of Tunis and Tripoli, and even the Emperor of Morocco, to enter upon the road of civilisation. They were obliged to find other employment for their people than piracy, and other means of filling their exchequer than tributes paid to them by the smaller states of Europe. And if we may regret that the liberty of the Bedouins of the desert has been destroyed, we must not forget that these same Bedouins were a nation of robbers, — whose principal means of living consisted of making excursions either upon each other, or upon the settled villagers, taking what they found, slaughtering all those who resisted, and selling the remaining prisoners as slaves. All these nations of free barbarians look very proud, noble and glorious at a distance, but only come near them and you will find that they, as well as the more civilised nations, are ruled by the lust of gain"
Saturday, April 16, 2005
MARX: SLANDERING BOTH JEWS AND NEGROES IN ONE BREATH
I excerpt the statement below from a comment in Front Page Magazine:
Marx, as we all know, was as rabid a foe of Judaism and Christianity as were his spiritual godfathers, Voltaire and the other Enlightenment philosophers.... Marx remains the greatest advocate of the "naturalistic worldview" in modern times. He was a true "bright"; a child of the "Enlightenment". In this passage from a letter written to Engels in 1862, he criticized his political opponent, the French Socialist Ferdinand LaSalle:
I now see clearly that he is descended, as the shape of his head and his hair clearly indicate, from the Negroes who were joined to the Jews at the time of the exodus from Egypt ( unless it was his mother or paternal grandmother who mated with a Negro). But this mixture of Judaism and Germanism with a negro substance as a base was bound to yield a most curious product. The importunity of the man also is negroid...One of the great discoveries of this Negro, which he confided to me, is that the Pelasgians are descended from the Semites. His main proof is that, according to the Book of Maccabees, the Jews sent messenger to Greece to ask for help and appealed to their tribal relationship..."
The above passage is interesting in three respects; it unmasks Marx's prejudices, it shows he was well within the mainstream of the "scientific" racists of his day, and also shows his willingness to slander and vilify a political opponent. This says much about one of the greatest, if not the greatest, propagandists for the "naturalistic worldview". .... You continue to evade the fact that the United States of America was founded upon Judeo-Christian values, and the liberty you so cherish is the gift of the Judeo-Christian culture you, like Voltaire and Marx, despise. The U.S is not, I repeat not, a nation with a "naturalistic worldview". That distinction is reserved for places like the former USSR, the PRC, Cuba, etc. Frankly, since Cuba is only 90 miles from our shores I wonder you and your ilk don't go there.
Context for the Marx quote above is here -- at the end of the letter to Engels and in a postscript to the letter. The translations differ slightly, however.
Friday, April 15, 2005
MARX: NEGROES A DEGENERATE TYPE
Marx-Engels Correspondence 1866: "For certain questions, such as nationality, etc., only here has a basis in nature been found. E.g., he [Tremaux] corrects the Pole Duchinski, whose version of the geological differences between Russia and the Western Slav lands he does incidentally confirm, by saying not that the Russians are Tartars rather than Slavs, etc., as the latter believes, but that on the surface-formation predominant in Russia the Slav has been tartarised and mongolised; likewise (he spent a long time in Africa) he shows that the common negro type is only a degeneration of a far higher one".
Thursday, April 14, 2005
MARX THOUGHT THAT RUSSIANS WERE REALLY ASIATIC AND SHOULD BE CHASED OUT OF RUSSIA
And Hitler tried to do it. Like Hitler, Marx saw race as a criterion of entitlement
Marx to Engels, 1865: "It has ditto been shown geologically and hydrographically that a great ‘Asiatic’ difference occurs east of the Dnieper, compared with what lies to the west of it, and that (as Murchison has already maintained) the Urals by no means constitute a dividing line. Result as obtained by Duchinski: Russia is a name usurped by the Muscovites. They are not Slavs; they do not belong to the Indo-Germanic race at all, they are des intrus [intruders], who must be chased back across the Dnieper, etc."
Wednesday, April 13, 2005
ENGELS WAS PRO-AMERICAN
Marx, Engels and Hitler were all favourably disposed towards their "racial brethren" in Britain and the USA. It was Slavs whom they really despised. So it is a considerable irony that a Slavic nation was the first to take up Marxism in a big way and that it was primarily the same Slavic nation that defeated Hitler
Engels in Deutsche-Brüsseler-Zeitung 1848: "In America we have witnessed the conquest of Mexico and have rejoiced at it. It is also an advance when a country which has hitherto been exclusively wrapped up in its own affairs, perpetually rent with civil wars, and completely hindered in its development, a country whose best prospect had been to become industrially subject to Britain — when such a country is forcibly drawn into the historical process. It is to the interest of its own development that Mexico will in future be placed under the tutelage of the United States. The evolution of the whole of America will profit by the fact that the United States, by the possession of California, obtains command of the Pacific"
Tuesday, April 12, 2005
MARX: CONTEMPT FOR INDIANS
But he thought British were superior and that their rule was a good thing
Marx, New-York Daily Tribune, August 8, 1853: "Indian society has no history at all, at least no known history. What we call its history, is but the history of the successive intruders who founded their empires on the passive basis of that unresisting and unchanging society. The question, therefore, is not whether the English had a right to conquer India, but whether we are to prefer India conquered by the Turk, by the Persian, by the Russian, to India conquered by the Briton.....
Monday, April 11, 2005
NO PAST AND NO FUTURE FOR THE SLAVS
Engels in Neue Rheinische Zeitung No. 222, February 1849: "We repeat: apart from the Poles, the Russians, and at most the Turkish Slavs, no Slav people has a future, for the simple reason that all the other Slavs lack the primary historical, geographical, political and industrial conditions for independence and viability. Peoples which have never had a history of their own, which from the time when they achieved the first, most elementary stage of civilization already came under foreign sway, or which were forced to attain the first stage of civilization only by means of a foreign yoke, are not viable and will never be able to achieve any kind of independence. And that has been the fate of the Austrian Slavs. The Czechs, among whom we would include the Moravians and Slovaks, although they differ in respect of language and history, have never had a history of their own"
Sunday, April 10, 2005
BOTH MARX AND ENGELS THOUGHT THAT THE CHINESE SUFFERED FROM HEREDITARY STUPIDITY
I guess Chairman Mao did not read these bits!
Marx, "Revolution in China and in Europe" (May 20, 1853): "It is almost needless to observe that, in the same measure in which opium has obtained the sovereignty over the Chinese, the Emperor and his staff of pedantic mandarins have become dispossessed of their own sovereignty. It would seem as though history had first to make this whole people drunk before it could rouse them out of their hereditary stupidity".
Context for the quote from Marx is here
The latter part of the quote from Engels is online here but the rest is not freely online. See Marx & Engels On Colonialism, 6th printing, Moscow, 1976, pp. 120 & 124.
Saturday, April 09, 2005
OUR HATE-FILLED ENGELS DESPISED THE IRISH TOO
(At least Engels had TWO master races in his thinking: Germans and Hungarians ("Magyars"))
Engels: The condition of the working class in England, 1892 "The southern facile character of the Irishman, his crudity, which places him but little above the savage, his contempt for all humane enjoyments, in which his very crudeness makes him incapable of sharing, his filth and poverty, all favour drunkeness. . . . the pressure of this race has done much to depress wages and lower the working-class. . . . That poverty manifests itself in Ireland thus and not otherwise, is owing to the character of the people, and to their historical development. The Irish are a people related in their whole character to the Latin nations, to the French, and especially to the Italians.... With the Irish, feeling and passion predominate; reason must bow before them. Their sensuous, excitable nature prevents reflection and quiet, persevering activity from reaching development -- such a nation is utterly unfit for manufacture as now conducted. . . . Irish distress cannot be removed by any Act of Repeal. Such an Act would, however, at once lay bare the fact that the cause of Irish misery, which now seems to come from abroad is really to be found at home"
Friday, April 08, 2005
ENGELS: CONTEMPT FOR SCANDINAVIANS TOO
Engels in Neue Rheinische Zeitung September 1848; "Scandinavianism is enthusiasm for the brutal, sordid, piratical, Old Norse national traits, for that profound inner life which is unable to express its exuberant ideas and sentiments in words, but can express them only in deeds, namely, in rudeness towards women, perpetual drunkenness and the wild frenzy of the Berserker alternating with tearful sentimentality".
Thursday, April 07, 2005
ENGELS DESPISED THE WHOLE OF THE BALKANS -- INCLUDING THE GREEKS
Engels to August Bebel, November 17, 1885. "These wretched, ruined fragments of one-time nations, the Serbs, Bulgars, Greeks, and other robber bands, or, behalf of which the liberal philistine waxes enthusiastic in the interests of Russia, are unwilling to grant each other the air they breathe, and feel obliged to cut each other's greedy throats... the lousy Balkan peoples . . . ".
(Not online. From Marx-Engels, Briefe an A. Bebel, W. Liebknecht, K. Kautsky und Andere, Moscow, 1933, pp 411, 412; translation by Bertram D. Wolfe, Marxism, 1967, p 68.)
Wednesday, April 06, 2005
ENGELS: SLAVS ARE INFERIOR AND DESERVE TO BE OPPRESSED BY GERMANS AND THE AUSTRO-HUNGARIAN EMPIRE
Neue Rheinische Zeitung February 1849: "And if during eight centuries the "eight million Slavs" have had to suffer the yoke imposed on them by the four million Magyars, that alone sufficiently proves which was the more viable and vigorous, the many Slavs or the few Magyars! .... what a "crime" it is, what a "damnable policy" that at a time when, in Europe in general, big monarchies had become a "historical necessity", the Germans and Magyars untied all these small, stunted and impotent little nations into a single big state and thereby enabled them to take part in a historical development from which, left to themselves, they would have remained completely aloof! Of course, matters of this kind cannot be accomplished without many a tender national blossom being forcibly broken. But in history nothing is achieved without violence and implacable ruthlessness... In short, it turns out these "crimes" of the Germans and Magyars against the said Slavs are among the best and most praiseworthy deeds which our and the Magyar people can boast in their history".
Tuesday, April 05, 2005
MORE TALK OF INFERIOR RACES
Marx, "British Politics" (April 7, 1853), Collected Works, Vol. 112, p.7: "The real point at issue always is, Turkey in Europe--the great peninsula to the south of the Save and Danube. This splendid territory has the misfortune to be inhabited by a conglomerate of different races and nationalities, of which it is hard to say which is the least fit for progress and civilization."
Monday, April 04, 2005
MARX ON GERMAN NATIONAL SUPERIORITY
Marx, 1852. "Revolution and counter-revolution in Germany". Collected Works vol. 11, pp. 47, 71: "Neither Bohemia nor Croatia was strong enough to exist as a nation by herself. Their respective nationalities, gradually undermined by the action of historical causes that inevitably absorbs into a more energetic stock, could only hope to be restored to anything like independence by an alliance with other Slavonic nations.....
Context here and here.
Sunday, April 03, 2005
ENGELS DESPISED THE RUSSIANS
Engels. "Democratic Pan-Slavism" (NRZ February 16. 1849), Collected Works, Vol. 8 p 378. ". . . hatred of Russia was and still is the primary revolutionary passion among Germans; that since the revolution, hatred of Czechs and Croats has been added, and that only by the most determined use of terror against these Slav peoples can we, jointly with the Poles and Magyars, safeguard the revolution."
(No Marxist seems to have put this online. I can't imagine why!)
Saturday, April 02, 2005
RACES EXIST NATURALLY BUT EUGENICS CAN AND SHOULD ABOLISH THEM
Marx & Engels, "The German Ideology", Chap. 3: "He has not the slightest idea that the ability of children to develop depends on the development of their parents and that all this crippling under existing social relations has arisen historically, and in the same way can be abolished again in the course of historical development. Even naturally evolved differences within the species, such as racial differences, etc., which Sancho does not mention at all, can and must be abolished in the course of historical development. Sancho — who in this connection casts a stealthy glance at zoology and so makes the discovery that “innate limited intellects” form the most numerous class not only among sheep and oxen, but also among polyps and infusoria, which have no heads at all — has perhaps heard that it is possible to improve races of animals and by cross-breeding to create entirely new, more perfect varieties both for human enjoyment and for their own self-enjoyment.. “Why should not” Sancho be able to draw a conclusion from this in relation to people as well?"
Friday, April 01, 2005
ENGELS: RACE A DETERMINING FACTOR IN HISTORICAL DEVELOPMENT
Engels: (Marx and Engels, Selected Works, Vol. 3, p. 502.): "We regard economic conditions as the factor which ultimately determines historical development. But race is itself an economic factor".
German reference: "Brief an W. Borgius" 25.1.1894. MEW, Bd. 39, S. 205. (Not apparently online).