‘Marx, Engels and America, Part One: Attitude Toward America in the Early Period’ by Avrom Landy from The Communist. Vol. 6 No. 5. July, 1927.

Avrom Landy takes full advantage of the newly opened Marx-Engels Institute for this invaluable deep dive into primary sources for Marx and Engels’ early thinking on the United States in this first part of a series guiding readers through Marx and Engels’ U.S. focused writings.

‘Marx, Engels and America, Part One: Attitude Toward America in the Early Period’ by Avrom Landy from The Communist. Vol. 6 No. 5. July, 1927.

THE numerous references to America in the different writings of Marx and Engels have hitherto failed to stimulate American marxists to make a special study of this subject. (1) Even Spargo, the sole American “biographer” of Marx, failed to pay more than cursory attention to this aspect of Marx’ and Engels’ activity. His biography shows clearly that he did not recognize its importance as a biographical contribution nor its value to the American movement—although this would have constituted the only original and contributive part of the entire volume. (2)

True, the state of marxian research, not quite favorable to an exhaustive study of the subject even today, was still less so in 1910, the year in which Spargo’s biography was published. But what, for example, can be said for an American

biographer who lacked the curiosity, not to speak of the scientific thoroughness, to investigate first hand Marx’ relation to the New York Tribune, repeating in a meager paragraph the meager information of Eleanor Marx Aveling? (3) It is true that Marx and the Civil War received a little more consideration. But Spargo never recognized its real importance in the development of Marx’ outlook. Instead of developing Marx’ real view concerning slavery and the Civil War; instead of utilizing the numerous remarks in the first volume of “Capital’’, which is dominated by the cross-Atlantic event and which does not fail to make clear Marx’ working-class position, Spargo dispatched the matter in a truly liberal, democratic spirit. In this way he points to the role of the British working class in preventing war against the American Union; and sees the entire significance of Marx’ interest in American affairs at this time in the fact that Marx was a great admirer of Abraham Lincoln—a fact which, standing by itself, is utterly misleading, not to say-meaningless. Spargo’s deficiencies in these respects, however, were not merely a matter of scientific neglect; they proceeded from a philistine, social-patriotic conception of marxism. The future fascist, ignoring the point of view of the labor movement and the proletarian revolution, did not see the political importance and the revolutionary character of Marx’ and Engels’ writings bearing on America.

The question of the reason for Marx’ and Engels’ interest in this country cannot be avoided. In general, it must be stressed that their activity was always animated by one central interest; the Social Revolution. It was the progress of the revolution that led them from country to country, including America. It was the Social Revolution developing within the structure of bourgeois society that unified their apparently diverse interests. The world in which they lived was a single unit, dominated by capitalist Europe and held together by the ties of a world market; a microcosm in which England, the classic home of capitalism, was for long the industrial sun, and the remainder of the world beyond the limits of Europe, China, America, etc., colonial satellites. It was as part of this closed system that Marx and Engels looked upon America; it was only as it affected the development of the Social Revolution that America occupied their attention.

In this respect, the “Communist Manifesto” is especially interesting. In 1847, Marx attributed an extremely vital place to America (4) in world economy. At that time, it not only absorbed European capital and surplus proletarian elements, but acted as a sort of agrarian hinterland to capitalist Europe, furnishing English industry with raw material, like cotton and corn, and importing all kinds of industrial products from the other side of the Atlantic. The predominance of England on the world market and basic role of cotton in its production ed Marx to conclude that commerce and modern civilization rested upon slavery and the production of cotton in North America. “This,” Engels said in a footnote to the second German edition of Marx’ “Poverty of Philosophy” published in 1892, “was perfectly correct for the year 1847. At that time the world trade of the United States was limited mainly to the importation of immigrants and industrial products and to the export of cotton and tobacco, hence of products of southern slave-labor. The northern states produced chiefly corn and meat for the slave states…’ (5)

Under these circumstances, America played no role in the proletarian movement and seemed to have no direct importance for the Social Revolution in Europe. It could only be considered as a powerful prop of the established order. For this reason it found no place in the “Communist Manifesto, as Marx and Engels pointed out in their joint preface to the second Russian translation of the Manifesto which appeared in 1882. (6) “The first Russian edition of the ‘Manifesto of the Communist Party,’ in Bakunin’s translation,” they wrote, “appeared at the beginning of the sixties in the printing establishment of the ‘Kolokol.’ At that time, a Russian edition of this work had for the West, at the most, the significance of a literary curiosity. Today such a view is no longer possible. The limited extent of the sphere of the proletarian movement at the time of the first publication of the Manifesto (January, 1848) is best shown by the last chapter: ‘Position of the Communists in Relation to the Various Opposition Par- ties.’ Here, primarily Russia and the United States are missing. It was the time when Russia formed the last great reserve of the European reaction, and when the emigration to the United States absorbed the surplus forces of the European proletariat. Both countries supplied Europe with raw mate- rial and at the same time served as markets for the sale of its industrial products. Both, therefore, appeared, in this or that manner, as props of the European social order.

“How different all this is today! Precisely the European emigration has made possible the colossal development of North American agriculture, which, by its competition, has shaken the very foundation of the large, as well as the small, landed property in Europe. At the same time, it has given the United States the possibility of proceeding to exploit its abundant industrial resources, and indeed, with such energy and on such a scale, that, in a short time, it will put an end to the industrial monopoly of western Europe. And both these circumstances are also reacting upon America in a revolutionary direction. The small and medium landed property of the self-working farmer, the basis of the entire political order of America, is succumbing more and more to the competition of the giant farms, while, simultaneously, in the industrial districts, there is being formed, for the first time, a numerous proletariat side by side with a fabulous concentration of capital.”

Two periods are thus distinguished by Marx and Engels with reference to the role of America in the social revolution. During the first, America is essentially a European colony, without a large proletariat, in reality a prop of the established order, and a negative factor on the side of the proletarian revolution. In the second, it has begun to lose its colonial character, developing a native proletariat together with a powerful bourgeoisie which threatened to rob England of its industrial and commercial supremacy. During the first period, therefore, the revolution is limited to Europe, and America acts in the capacity of a complicating factor with regard to developments in Europe; in the second, the sphere of the social revolution is extended to America which acquires new importance in accord with its new role in world economy. The first period is characterized by the absence of a labor movement in America and the international organization of those movements already in existence; the second, by the developments of an American movement of promising proportions following the Civil War, and the founding of the first International, the International Workingmen’s Association. The connection between these different facts is not unimportant. For the present, however, we shall limit ourselves to the first period.

During the summer of 1843, Marx prepared to leave Germany for Paris after his marriage to Jenny von Westphalen. He was then twenty-five years old and sedulously occupied with his studies in French, German and English history. “In Paris,” says Riazanov in taking up the question of Marx’ reading, “Marx continued to work on the history of France, and, for a time, even had the intention of writing a history of the Convention. At the same time, however, he also read much on the history of the United States and England, and studied the socialists and the economists, Ricardo and MacCulloch.” (7)

Engels, too, had manifested an interest in the United States at this time, although the reason for this interest is more obvious in his case than in the case of Marx. In 1843 his acquaintance with Marx had not yet ripened into the friendship of a year later, resting on the first formulation of a common outlook. His residence in England had brought him into contact with the communism of Robert Owen who was just then engaged in founding a communist colony in America. From a letter to Marx in 1844, we know that Engels had not only followed the communist experiments in America during the early forties, having undoubtedly read the contributions concerning these in ““The New Moral World”, (an Owenite organ to which he himself had contributed several articles, in the autumn of 1843, on the progress of social reform on the Continent) (8) but even thought of writing a book about them.

This book, as far as we know, was never written. During the next year, however, Engels published his volume on “The Condition of the Working Class in England in 1844”, indicating that his interest in America has not been limited to its communist colonies. At that time, he saw in the United States a growing industrial nation and the country most likely to supersede Great Britain in its industrial monopoly. ‘“Meanwhile, let us review once more the chance of the English bourgeosies,” he wrote. “In the worst case, foreign manufacture, especially that of America, may succeed in withstanding English competition, even after the repeal of the Corn Laws, inevitable in the course of a few years. German manufacture is now making great efforts, and that of America has developed with giant strides. America, with its inexhaustible resources, with its unmeasured coal and iron fields, with its unexampled wealth of water-power and its navigable rivers, but especially with its energetic, active population, in com- parison with which the English are phlegmatic dawdlers,— America has in less than ten years created a manufacture which already competes with England in the coarser cotton goods, has excluded the English from the markets of North and South America, and holds its own in China, side by side with England. If any country is adapted to holding a monopoly of manufacture, it is America. Should English manufacture be thus vanquished—and in the course of the next twenty years, if the present conditions remain unchanged, this is inevitable—the majority of the proletariat must become forever superfluous, and has no other choice than to starve or rebel. Does the English bourgeoisie reflect upon this contingency? On the contrary; its favorite economist, MacCulloch, teaches from his student’s desk, that a country so young as America, which is not even properly populated, cannot carry on manufacture successfully or dream of competing with an old manufacturing country like England. It were madness in the Americans to make the attempt, for they could only lose by it; better far for them to stick to their agriculture, and when they have brought their whole territory under the plough, a time may perhaps come for carrying on manufacture with a profit. So says the wise economist, and the whole bourgeoisie worships him, while the Americans take possession of one market after another, while a daring American speculator recently even sent a shipment of American cotton goods to England, where they were sold for re-exportation!” (9)

The prophecy which Engels made with such “youthful ardor” in 1844 is now a pregnant reality. It acquires further interest, however, when embodied in a volume which was written shortly after the publication of Engels’ study of England in 1845, but which failed to be published during their life-time. The Bolshevik Revolution and Lenin’s little book on the marxian teaching on the state called forth the attempt (10) to prove that, while Marx and Engels taught the necessity of the dictatorship of the proletariat, they considered the democratic republic, that is, the bourgeois republic, as its special form. In proof of this contention, we are referred to Engels’ criticism of the draft of the Erfurt Program in which he speaks of the democratic republic as “the specific form for the dictatorship of the proletariat.” (11)

This is not the place to prove the utter perversion of such an assertion in detail. Marx’ and Engels’ early statements, however, are illuminating in this respect. We have seen that Engels looked upon America as the country most likely to become the leading capitalist nation of the world. In the “German Ideology”, (12) which proves that Marx and Engels formulated their theory of historical materialism not later than the autumn of 1845, they consider America in its character as a state. “The most perfect example of the modern state,” they write, “is North America. The more recent French, English and North American writers all assert that the state exists only for the sake of private property, so that this has also gone over into the personal consciousness of people.” The North American republic, the highest form of the modern state, does not go beyond the limits of private property! Indeed, it is “the most perfect example” of the bourgeois dictatorship. For the modern state is “nothing more than the form of organization which the bourgeois necessarily give themselves, internally as well as externally, for the mutual guarantee of their property and their interests.” Or, as Marx and Engels stated in the same place, the state is the form “in which the individuals of a ruling class realize (geltend machen) their common interests and the entire bourgeois society of an epoch is epitomized.” Instead of being the specific form of the proletarian dictatorship, which rests upon the abolition of bourgeois property-relations the expropriation of the expropriators, the “democratic republic” turns out to be the specific form of its very opposite, the bourgeois dictatorship, resting upon bourgeois property-relations.—But then this is only the young Marx and the still younger Engels!

In disregarding the year 1847, which has been touched upon in another place, we come to the febrile days of February, 1848. The revolutionary wave failed to bring victory to the working class. In its stead, it brought a period of prosperity for the bourgeois. Far from declining, capitalism found itself at the beginning of an ascending curve. New markets were developed at an increasing rate and world trade became an actual fact.

This development was graphically described by Engels in 1892. “The revival of trade, after the crisis of 1847,” he wrote, “was the dawn of a new industrial epoch. The repeal of the Corn Laws and the financial reform subsequent thereon, gave to English industry and commerce all the elbow room they had asked for. The discovery of the California and Austrian gold-fields followed in rapid succession. The colonial markets developed at an increasing rate their capacity for absorbing English manufactured goods. In India millions of hand-weavers were finally crushed out by the Lancashire power-loom. China was more and more being opened up. Above all, the United States—then, commercially speaking, a mere colonial market, but by far the biggest of them all—underwent an economic development astounding even for that rapidly progressive country. And, finally, the new means of communication introduced at the close of the preceding period —railways and ocean steamers—were now worked out on an international scale; they realized actually what had hitherto existed only potentially, a world market. This world market, at first, was composed of a number of chiefly or entirely agricultural countries grouped around one manufacturing center —England—which consumed the greater part of their surplus raw produce, and supplied them in return with the greater part of their requirements in manufactured articles. No wonder England’s industrial progress was colossal and unparalleled, and such that the status of 1844 now appears to us as comparatively primitive and insignificant.” (13)

In this upward movement of bourgeois society, the United States had not only had its share, but an essential part of capitalist economy, had even played the role of a stimulating factor. Indeed, the developments in America had impressed Marx and Engels to such an extent that they spoke of the discovery of gold in California as more important than the February Revolution and promising much more magnificent results than even the discovery of America. California gold, the development of regular steamship lines, the opening of the Pacific, they maintained, not only extended the scope of bourgeois society, drawing entire barbarian tribes into the vortex of world trade, but promised to transfer to the Pacific the role now held by the Atlantic. “We now come to America,” Marx and Engels wrote in their review of January, 1850. (14) “The most important event that has occurred here, more important even than the February Revolution, is the discovery of the California gold mines. Even now, scarcely eighteen months later, it can be foreseen that this discovery will have much more magnificent results than even the discovery of America. For three hundred and thirty years, the entire trade of Europe to the Pacific Ocean was conducted with the most touching patience around the Cape of Good Hope or Cape Horn. All proposals for cutting through the Isthmus of Panama came to naught because of the stupid jealousy of the trading nations. The Californian gold mines have been discovered for eighteen months now, and the Yankees have already begun a railroad, a great highway, a canal from the Gulf of Mexico; already steamboats are plying regularly from New York to Chagres, from Panama to San Francisco; already the trade of the Pacific Ocean is concentrating in Panama and the voyage around Cape Horn is antiquated. A Coast thirty degrees latitude long, one of the most beautiful and fruitful in the world, hitherto as good as uninhabited, is transformed at sight into a rich, civilized land, thickly populated by people of all races, from the Yankee to the Chinaman, from the Negro to the Indian and Malayan, from the Creole and Mestizo to the European. California gold pours out in streams over America and the Asiatic coast of the Pacific Ocean, and sweeps the obstinate barbarian peoples into world trade, into civilization. For the second time, world trade receives a new direction. What Tyre, Carthage and Alexandria were in antiquity, Venice and Genoa in the Middle Ages, what hitherto London and Liverpool have been, emporiums of world trade, New York and San Francisco, San Juan de Nicaragua and Leon, Chagres and Panama are becoming now. The center of gravity of world commerce, in the Middle Ages Italy, in more recent times England, is now the southern half of the North American Peninsula. The industry and trade of old Europe must make a tremendous exertion if it does not wish to fall into the same decay as the industry and trade of Italy since the sixteenth century, if England and France are not to become the same as Venice, Genoa and Holland are today. In a few years, we shall have a regular steam-packet line from England to Chagres, from Chagres and San Francisco to Sidney, Canton and Singapore. Thanks to Californian gold and the indefatigable energy of the Yankees, both coasts of the Pacific Ocean will soon be just as populated, just as open for trade, just as industrial as is now the coast from Boston to New Orleans. Then the Pacific Ocean will play the same role that now the Atlantic plays, and in antiquity the Mediterranean Sea—the role of the great water-highway of world commerce; and the Atlantic Ocean will sink to the role of an inland sea as is now played by the Mediterranean. The only chance, then, for the European civilized countries not to fall into the same industrial, commercial and political dependence in which Italy, Spain and Portugal now find themselves, lies in a social revolution which, as long as there is still time, transforms the method of production and distribution in accord with the needs of production itself proceeding from the modern productive forces, and thereby makes possible the creation of new productive forces which secure the superiority of European industry and thus equalize the disadvantages of its geographical position.”

In their review of May to October, Marx and Engels returned to the question of America, dwelling on the significance of the Californian gold-discovery for the world market and the development of steamship lines. “We now come to the United States of North America,” they wrote. (15) “The crisis of 1836, which first broke out here and raged most violently, lasted almost uninterruptedly till 1842 and was followed by a complete transformation of the American credit system. The trade of the United States recovered on this more solid basis; to be sure, very slowly at the beginning with 1844 and 1845, increased substantially here, too. The famine as well as the revolutions in Europe were for America only sources of gain. From 1845 to 1847, it gained by the enormous corn export and by the increased cotton prices of 1846. It was only slightly touched by the crisis of 1847. In the year 1849, it had the greatest cotton yield it had yet had, and in the year 1850 it gained about twenty million dollars as a result of the failure of the cotton crop which coincided with the new boom in the European cotton industry. The Revolutions of 1848 were followed by a great emigration of European capital to the United States, part of which arrived with the emigrants themselves, part of which was invested in United States bonds in Europe. This increased demand for American bonds has raised their price to such an extent that a short time since, the speculators in New York threw themselves upon them with great eagerness. We therefore continue to maintain, in spite of all assurance to the contrary from the reactionary bourgeois press, that the only state-form in which our European capitalists have confidence is the bourgeois republic. There is altogether only one expression for bourgeois confidence in any state-form whatever: its quotation on the stock exchange.

“The prosperity of the United States, nevertheless, increased still more as a result of other causes. The inhabited territory, the market of the North American Union, expanded in two directions with surprising rapidity. The increase of the population through reproduction in the interior, as well as through the continually augmented immigration, led to the reclamation of whole states and territories. Wisconsin and Iowa were in a few years relatively thickly populated and all the states of the Upper Mississippi territory received important additions of immigrants. The exploitation of the mines near Lake Superior and the increasing corn production of the entire lake area gave trade and shipping on this system of great inland lakes a new impulse which will be enhanced still more through an act of the last Congressional session in which trade with Canada and Nova Scotia are offered great facilities. Thus, while the Northwestern States have achieved an entirely new importance, Oregon has been colonized in a few years, Texas and New Mexico annexed, California conquered. The discovery of the California gold mines was the crowning point of American prosperity. Already in the second number, we have called attention, before any other European journal, to the importance of this discovery and its necessary consequences for the entire world trade. This importance does not lie in the increase in the amount of gold through the newly discovered mines, although even this increase in the means of exchange could in no way remain without favorable influence upon the general trade. It lies in the spur which the mineral wealth of California gave to the capitals on the entire world market, in the activity in which the entire American west coast and the Asiatic east coast were involved, in the new market for the sale of goods which was created in California and all countries touched by the influence of California. The Californian market in itself is important; a year ago there were a hundred thousand, now there are at least three hundred thousand people there who produce almost nothing but gold and take in exchange for this gold all their necessaries of life from the foreign markets. But the Californian market is insignificant in comparison with the continual expansion of all markets on the Pacific Ocean, in comparison with the striking rise in trade in Chili and Peru, in western Mexico, on the Sandwich Islands, and in comparison with the suddenly arisen commerce of Asia and Australia with California. Through California, entire new world-highways have become necessary, world- highways which must shortly surpass all others in importance. The chief trade-route to the Pacific Ocean which has only now been actually opened and is becoming the most important Ocean of the world, passes, from now on, across the Isthmus of Panama. The creation of connections on this Isthmus through highways, railroads, canals, has now become the most urgent need of world trade, and in places has already begun. The railroad from Chagres to Panama is already being built. An American company has had the river basin of San Juan de Nicaragua surveyed in order to connect the two oceans at this place, to begin with, by an overland route and then by a canal. Other routes, the one across the Isthmus of Darien, the Atrato- Route in new Granada, the one across the Isthmus of Tehuantepec are being discussed in English and American papers. With the ignorance, now suddenly revealed, in which the entire civilized world finds itself concerning the nature of the terrain of Central America, it is impossible to determine which route is the most advantageous for a great canal; according to the few known facts, the Atrato-Route and the road across Panama offer the most opportunities.

“In connection with the communications across the Isthmus, the rapid expansion of oceanic shipping has become equally pressing. Already boats are sailing between Southampton and Chagres, New York and Chagres, Valpairaiso, Lima, Panama, Acapulco and San Francisco; but these few lines with their small number of steamers are by far insufficient. The increase of shipping between Europe and Chagres is becoming more necessary from day to day, and the growing commerce between Asia, Australia and America demands new, vast steamship lines from Panama and San Francisco to Canton, Singapore, Sydney, New Zealand and the most important station of the Pacific Ocean, the Sandwich Islands. Australia and New Zealand especially have improved most as a result of the rapid progress of colonization as well as of the influence of California, and do not want to be separated from the civilized world a moment longer by a four to six month sail. The total population of the Australian colonies (except New Zealand) rose from 170,676 (1839) to 333,764 in the year 1848, hence increased by 9514% in nine years. England itself cannot leave these colonies without steamboat communications; at this moment, the Government is negotiating about a line in connection with the East Indian overland post; and whether these are realized or not, the need for steamship communications with America and especially California, where 35,000 emigrants went last year from Australia, will soon afford its own relief. One can really say that only now is the world beginning to get round, since the existence of the need for this universal oceanic shipping.

“This impending expansion of steam-shipping will be increased still more through the opening, already mentioned, of the Dutch Colonies and through the increase of screw steamships with which, as proves more and more to be the case, emigrants can be transported more quickly, relatively more cheaply and more advantageously than on sailboats. Besides the screw steamers which are already travelling from Glasgow, and Liverpool to New York, new ones are to be added to the line, and a line between Rotterdam and New York is to be established. The extent to which capital, at present, has the general tendency to throw itself on oceanic steamshipping is shown by the continual increase in the competing steamers traveling between Liverpool and New York, the establishment of entirely new lines from England to the Cape and from New York to Havre, a whole series of similar projects which are now being hawked about in New York. ‘

“In this turning of capital to overseas steamshipping and to the canalization of the American Isthmus, the basis is already laid for over-speculation in this field; the center of this speculation is necessarily New York which receives the greatest mass of California gold, which has already drawn the chief trade with California to itself and in general plays the same role for America as London for Europe. New York is already the center of the entire trans-Atlantic shipping; all the steamboats of the Pacific coast belong to New York companies, and almost all the new projects in this branch proceed from New York. The speculation in overseas steamship lines has already begun in New York; the Nicaragua Company, proceeding from New York, is likewise the beginning of speculation in the Isthmus canals. Over-speculation will very soon develop, and al- though English capital enters en masse in all such enterprises, although the London bourse will be glutted with similar projects of all kinds, this time New York will remain the center of the entire swindle and will be, as in 1836, the first to experience its collapse. Numerous projects will be ruined, but as in 1845 the English railway system, this time at least the outline of a universal steamshipping will result from the over-speculation. No matter how many companies fail, the steamboats, which are doubling the Atlantic commerce, which are opening up the Pacific Ocean, which are connecting Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, China with America and are reducing the voyage around the world to the duration of four months, will remain.

“The prosperity of England and America soon reacted upon the European Continent…”

Under such circumstances, a new revolution was out of the question, at least for the time being. And that was the conclusion to which Marx and Engels came in their famous review of 1850. As long as there was no conflict between the productive forces and the productive relations, a real revolution was impossible. “With this general prosperity in which the productive forces of bourgeois society are developing so luxuriantly, as much as this is at all possible within the limits of bourgeois relations,” they wrote, “there can be no question of a real revolution. Such a revolution is only possible in those periods where these two factors, the modern productive forces and the bourgeois forms of production, come into contradiction with one another… A new revolution is only possible in consequence of a new crisis. It, however, is just as certain as the latter.”’

(To be continued)


1. The difficulty of a foreign language and the inaccessibility of many of Marx’ and Engels’ writings are natural obstacles with which American marxists cannot really cope. Even where the difficulty of the foreign language does not exist, the problem of obtaining the necessary works still remains. A systematic survey of the different libraries in America would probably reveal much valuable material. In this respect, the Herman Schlueter Collection, given to the Library of the University of Wisconsin by William English Walling, and containing numerous first editions, is of considerable interest.

2. That is, if we exclude Spargo’s extensive photographic reproductions, as it is, the chief merit of the book.

3. Karl Marx: His Life and Work. By John Spargo. New York, B.W. Huebsch. 1910. p. 187. Compare: “‘Revolution and Counter-Revolution etc. by Karl Marx.” Edited by Eleanor Marx Aveling. London, 1896. Note By the Editor; also: “The Eastern Question etc.” By Karl Marx. Edited by Eleanor Marx Aveling and Edward Aveling. London, 1897, The Introduction.

4. Compare: “La Misere de la Philosophie” by Marx. Paris, 1847. p. 102-103. Also “The Communist’, April, 1927. p. 95.

5. Das Elend der Philosophie. Von Karl Marx. Deutsch von, E. Bernstein u. K. Kautsky. Mit Vorwort und Noten von Fr. Engels. Zweite Auflage. Stuttgart 1892. p. 93-94.

6. “Das Kommunistische Manifest.” 4. autorisirte deutsche Ausgabe. Mit einem neuen Vorwort von Friedrich Engels. London, 1890. p. 5. The Russian foreword, which is reprinted here, is dated London, January 21, 1882.

7. Introduction to the first part of Marx’ and Engels’ manuscript, “Die deutsche Ideologie’. In: Marx-Engels-Archiv. Hrsg. von D. Riazanov. I. Bd. (1925). p. 212-213.

8. These articles appeared on November 4th and 18th, 1843, and will probably be reprinted in these columns at some future date.

9. Engels, F.: The Condition of the Working Class in England in 1844. With Appendix written 1886, and Preface 1887. Translated by Florence Kelley Wischnewetzky. New York, 1887. p. 196-197. In this Appendix, written more than forty years later, Engels says: “I have taken care not to strike out of the text the many prophecies, amongst others that of an imminent social revolution in England, which my youthful ardor induced me to venture upon. The wonder is, not that a good many of them proved wrong, but that so many of them have proved right, and that the critical state of English trade, to be brought on by German and especially American competition, which I then foresaw — though in too short a period—has now actually come to pass.” (ibid. p. v.)

10. Cf. Wilhelm Mautner: Der Bolschewismus. Stuttgart 1922. p. 166; 191.

11. The story connected with this manuscript has an interest all of its own. It’ has been told by Riazanov in his introduction to the first part of the “German Ideology” which he published in the first volume of the Marx-Engels-Archive of which he is the editor. Lack of space forbids its reproduction here. The manuscript, which Riazanov has succeeded in re- constructing, is extremely valuable, however, and deserves to be translated as quickly as possible.

12. Marx und Engels: Die deutsche Ideologie. I. Tiel. Ueber Feuerbach. (1845). In: Marx-Engels-Archiv. I. Bd. p. 299.

13. Engels, F.: The Condition of the Working Class etc. With Preface written in 1892. Transl. by F. K. Wischnewetzky. London, 1892. Preface, p. Vi.

14. In the Neue Rheinische Revue. 1850. Further reference below.

15. Aus dem literarischen Nachlass von Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels und Ferdinand Lassalle. Hrsg. von Franz Mehring. 3. Bd. Stuttgart 1902. p. 443-444. Hereafter referred to as Nachlass.

There were a number of journals with this name in the history of the movement. This ‘The Communist’ was the main theoretical journal of the Communist Party from 1927 until 1944. Its origins lie with the folding of The Liberator, Soviet Russia Pictorial, and Labor Herald together into Workers Monthly as the new unified Communist Party’s official cultural and discussion magazine in November, 1924. Workers Monthly became The Communist in March ,1927 and was also published monthly. The Communist contains the most thorough archive of the Communist Party’s positions and thinking during its run. The New Masses became the main cultural vehicle for the CP and the Communist, though it began with with more vibrancy and discussion, became increasingly an organ of Comintern and CP program. Over its run the tagline went from “A Theoretical Magazine for the Discussion of Revolutionary Problems” to “A Magazine of the Theory and Practice of Marxism-Leninism” to “A Marxist Magazine Devoted to Advancement of Democratic Thought and Action.” The aesthetic of the journal also changed dramatically over its years. Editors included Earl Browder, Alex Bittelman, Max Bedacht, and Bertram D. Wolfe.

PDF of full issue: https://www.marxists.org/history/usa/pubs/communist/v06n05-jul-1927-communist.pdf

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s