What would be the thesis statement of The Communist Manifesto?Where in the book?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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There could be a number of things that would serve as a thesis statement for this work.  I will identify two of them here.

First, there is the beginning of the work.  It reads

The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles.

This can be seen as the thesis of the work because it gives the Marxist view of all of history.  Marx believed that all of human history was a story of classes in conflict with another.  This would continue until communism was finally established.

A second possibility comes at the end of the first chapter of the work.  There, Marx says that

What the bourgeoisie therefore produces, above all, are its own grave-diggers. Its fall and the victory of the proletariat are equally inevitable.

We can say that this is the thesis statement because it gives the most relevant idea of the book for our own time.  Capitalism is the system that exists in our own time and we are interested in what will happen to it.  According to Marx, it will fall and the proletariat will rise, eventually creating communism.

You can make an argument for either of these being the thesis of the work.


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