Letter on Marx’s Capital

Sir, I am writing to thank you for highlighting the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the publication of Vol. 1 of `Das Capital’ which was a landmark publication. Karl Marx, the founder of modern dialectical materialism and the theory of class struggle continued his work and did not live to see the publication after completion of Vols. 2 and 3.

It is particularly important to note the importance of both the work as well as the life of Marx. It was Marx who showed that one should not buckle to the pressures of the leading theories of the day and should use one’s mind and the natural thirst for knowledge and truth to go beyond what are the obvious limitations of the theories of the day. Just as in 1867, in the year 2017 we are still seeing the worldwide domination of the capitalist system and all the theories that surround it and praise it and apologise for its obvious failures, rather than to actually expose the system thoroughly and show that it is an outdated and dying and crisis prone system that has brought nothing but war and pestilence and destruction for the vast majority of humankind in the centuries that it was established and has been carrying on since.

In particular, at the time of Marx there were many paradoxes that bourgeois economists and thinkers were simply unable to contend with and explain. In particular, it was Marx who discovered the theory of surplus value as inherent to capitalism, and who showed that capitalist system has an inevitable tendency towards monopolization and imperialism, and was also able to explain the boom and bust cycles of capitalism. He was able to show that the bourgeoisie and the working class gather at two irreconcilable poles and it is class struggle that defines the dynamics of society.

His other great contribution was to show that all the philosophy and culture at a certain epoch is a reflection of the existing terms of production. Furthermore, his epoch making discovery was that the political systems that arise also are a reflection of these underlying economic systems. Thus Marx brought great clarity to what was a confusing picture. His conclusion which was valid at that time, and continues to be valid is that the working class is the grave digger of capitalism and will in its place institute socialism and as society progresses towards the elimination of all classes, communism remains the final destination of society.

Thus, today all of us in the revolutionary movement are duty bound to respect this basic tenet and work towards this goal. Let us all work towards that form of society that will end all exploitation and bring communism into a living reality.

S. Nair, Kochi

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