Why did Marx believe that capitalism is destined to self-destruct?
Karl Marx was a German philosopher, economist and socialist. His theories on society, politics and economy formed Marxism; a collective name for the beliefs and ideals that Marx believed in. Marx produced many literary works during his lifetime such as Das Kommunistische Manifest (The Communist Manifesto) and The Capital (Manifest der Kommunistischen Partei) which outlined and explained the problems that capitalism posed upon itself and the population. He believed that capitalism was a flawed governing system which socialism would eventually replace and that it would prove to be the cause of its own destruction for a number of reasons. This included: the alienation and exploitation of the proletariat for the profit of the wealth, the industrial cycles that it created and the contradictory nature of capitalism. Within this essay I shall explore the concepts and propositions of Marxism to understand why Marx believed that capitalism was designed to self-destruct.
After growing up in the town of Trier in the Russian Rhineland, Marx relocated to Berlin in 1836 for the duration of five years where influences such as Hegel began to shape his left-wing philosophies. Shortly afterwards, he gained a journalistic position at the Cologne newspaper Rheinische Zeitung (Rhenish Newspaper) where he was able to express his radical liberalism to the public. However, it is much later in Marx's life that his ideas were to become organised within The Communist Manifesto of 1848. With the aid of close friend and socialist ex-military man Friedrich Engles, Marx was able to recognise and convey the importance of self-consciousness and freedom. This is portrayed through the famous aphorism[1: Elster, J. An Introduction to Karl Marx (Cambridge: 1999) p. 7 ][2: Laski, H.J. Introduction to the Communist Manifesto (New Delhi: 1999) p.