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melbourne

How does history change?

4:30am Sun 17 Apr
melbourne

About this session

Theories abound concerning why society changes. Some reduce it to the actions of 'great men'. Others assert that there is a natural tendency towards progress and enlightenment. Yet as capitalism plunges deeper into chaos and crisis, neither of these are very convincing.

This session will draw out the materialist philosophy which underpins Marxism. Marx and Engels constructed an enormous challenge to the theorists of their day, bringing to light for the first time the significance of the material basis of society, and of classes and class struggle, in shaping social development. It was this theoretical framework which enabled their groundbreaking analysis of capitalism, and of the potential of revolutionary struggles by the working class to bring to life a society without exploitation and oppression.

Recommended Reading

The Communist Manifestoby Marx and Engels
The Revolutionary Ideas of Karl Marx, Chapter Five: History and class struggleby Alex Callinicos
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