Talk:Karl Marx

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  • Naturally, in America everyone knew that from 1846 to 1861 a free trade system prevailed, and that Representative Morrill carried his protectionist tariff through Congress only in 1861, after the rebellion had already broken out. Secession, therefore, did not take place because the Morrill tariff had gone through Congress, but, at most, the Morrill tariff went through Congress because secession had taken place.

Civil War Quote[edit]

I removed the quote about the American Civil War being a tariff war. That was not Marx's position and he was only paraphrasing his opponents arguments before demolishing them. See

Real Marx quote?[edit]

From Isaac Asimov's Book of Facts: "I do not trust any Russian. As soon as a Russian worms his way in, all hell breaks loose." (apparently written to Friedrich Engels) If this is a true quote it is a very interesting one. Oddly enough there is very little mention of it online (9 google matches). I was thinking it could be added as "Attributed" (with the creation of a sourced/attributed menu) and later moved to "Wrongly attributed" (or deleted) or "Sourced" by someone who can find out. Thoughts? 10:33, 28 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Last words?[edit]

i once read (can't remember where)that these were said after a speech when he was asked if he had any last words, of course he may have said them again on his death bed.

'I am not a Marxist'[edit]

I removed this quote as it is taken out of context and has been shortened in order to manipulate its meaning.

Democracy Is the Road To Socialism[edit]

What is the context of this quote, what is the source?

See the Joseph Schumpeter quote page. Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy p. 220--Oracleofottawa 07:35, 25 July 2010 (UTC)

Second quote under Grundrisse[edit]

Is this the original German quote? I doubt that even colloquial texts of the time would refer to "electric telegraphs". As for "selfacting mules", I don't think anyone would say this English, let alone German. Sorry if I sound pedantic or patronising; I'm just curious.

From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs.[edit]

My understanding is that this quote, while popularized by Marx, originates elsewhere. BD2412 T 02:42, 1 May 2006 (UTC)

JAI: The quote is a paraphrase (really a summation) from the New Testament. Specifically, Acts Chap 4:


   And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled 

together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.


   And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: 

neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.


   And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection 

of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.


   Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as 

were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold,


   And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was 

made unto every man according as he had need.

Quote about Lassalle[edit]

Several times, an anonymous editor has removed the following quote without explanation:

  • It is now quite plain to me — as the shape of his head and the way his hair grows also testify — that he is descended from the negroes who accompanied Moses' flight from Egypt (unless his mother or paternal grandmother interbred with a nigger). Now, this blend of Jewishness and Germanness, on the one hand, and basic negroid stock, on the other, must inevitably give rise to a peculiar product. The fellow's importunity is also nigger-like.

This is a most unpleasant quote by modern standards (which I personally feel are a vast improvement over the attitudes of Marx's time). However, I verified the source, so it does appear to be a legitimate quote. (We should probably track down a hardcopy, though, so we can better source and verify it. I'm particularly wondering whether the bolding was an editorial liberty by the website, which would therefore warrant a normal weight instead.)

Wikiquote's mission is not to present its quotees in either a positive or a negative light, but to provide notable quotes of any type from that person. I imagine that the person adding this quote originally believed it to be a notable example of Marx's beliefs about race, however outrageous by modern standards. (In fact, the notability surely comes from subsequent world events, the very nature of which formed many of these standards.) Because of this, I support its inclusion. I invite discussion on this topic. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 16:15, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

I changed "nigger" to "negro". The original German word is "Neger" [simply wrong! Nigger, niggerhaft and Neger all appear.--Radh 11:13, 19 April 2010 (UTC)] which could be translated as either word. I would remove this quote because it has nothing to do with his works and little to do with his public image. (Example: Lyndon Johnson's article makes no mention of his frequent use of the racial epithet.) In any case, Marx consistently uses the word "negro" in his other works, and given the context of each usage, they do not imply a racial slur. Bolding is unnecessary.

[this is obviously not true: Marx used Neger, but also niggerhafte Zudringlichkeit (L. an ass-kisser) and, more than once, Nigger in this letter: der jüdische Nigger L. etc. - this obviously is viciously anti-Lassalleian, strongly antisemitic and plain racist.--Radh 11:04, 19 April 2010 (UTC)]

I agree pretty much with the above and would not include the quote on this page. Engels very graciously made available all of Marx's letters (the link to that particular quote does not work, however, but it does exist) and it is indeed true that Marx had those views. But it is also true that Marx was an abolitionist and an anti-racist, if you read his work. Nonetheless, he did make such comments, and others, which can be read here. But as the latter article points out, it would be absurd to include this quote on this page as it only serves to unfairly discredit Marx, at least without proper context. jonna

Can someone please find a real citation for the two quotes under "other"? They seem to me to be either highly out of context or poorly translated. The first one about the Mexicans especially seems out of context, expecially as it seems to have been posted in attempt to show Marx to have been a racist with cases other than his opposition to Lasalle.-Koba

Are we stalinist's or are we scholars? You cannot expect every second of any man's life to constantly "reflect favorably". Let the bare naked truth stand "in it's context" as a private and intimate communication between two life long friends. Now back to work..--Oracleofottawa 00:24, 14 September 2009 (UTC)

Great Indian Revolt Of 1857[edit]

"However, infamous the conduct of sepoys, it is only the reflex, in a concentrated form, of England’s own conduct in India, not only during the epoch of the foundation of her Eastern Empire, but even during the last ten years of a long settled rule. The characteristics that rule it suffices to say that torture formed an organic institution of its financial policy. There is something in human history like retribution; and it is a rule of historic retribution that its instrument be forged not by the offended, but by the offender himself." The most famous part of this quote is the last sentence: "There is something in human history like retribution; and it is a rule of historic retribution that its instrument be forged not by the offended, but by the offender himself."

'Alternate translation' of "Religion is the opiate of the people"[edit]

There is no reference for this so I deleted it. In the new annotated version of the Communist Manifesto by Haymarket Books, this is in fact shown to be a distortion. This distortion is even more elaborately explained by John Bellamy Foster, editor of Monthly Review, in the Introduction to How to Read Karl Marx by Ernst Fischer. (Foster's wikipedia page is consistently manipulated by hacks so I do not reference it.) In the Introduction Foster makes note of the many 'anti-introductions' that have been written to Marx's Capital, for instance by the anti-Marxists Samuel H. Beer and A.J.P. Taylor in their 'Introduction' to the Communist Manifesto (Croft Classics and Penguin editions, respectively).jonna

"Landlords, like all other men, love to reap where they never sowed."[edit]

removed this from the unsourced, if he said it he was quoting Adam Smith

Quite right!! The reference is Wealth of Nations..Book I, Chapter VI, pg.60..--Oracleofottawa 00:02, 15 November 2009 (UTC)

MECW has the Blos quote as follows:

"Neither of us cares a straw for popularity. Let me cite one proof of this: such was my aversion to the personality cult that at the time of the International, when plagued by numerous moves — originating from various countries — to accord me public honour, I never allowed one of these to enter the domain of publicity, nor did I ever reply to them, save with an occasional snub. When Engels and I first joined the secret communist society, we did so only on condition that anything conducive to a superstitious belief in authority be eliminated from the Rules."

Rosa Lichtenstein 16:37, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

"Mankind does not pose problems for itself for which it does not already have a solution."[edit]

George Friedman, of STRATFOR, ascribes the above to "Karl Marx, of all people" in his recent book _The Next 100 Years_ (p. 252). Friedman gives no source and I have found no attributions of the sentence to Marx other that people quoting Friedman. Can anyone confirm or disconfirm?

I believe this is the proper quote: "Therefore, mankind always sets itself only such tasks as it can solve."

No social order is ever destroyed before all the productive forces for which it is sufficient have been developed, and new superior relations of production never replace older ones before the material conditions for their existence have matured within the framework of the old society. Mankind thus inevitably sets itself only such tasks as it is able to solve, since closer examination will always show that the problem itself arises only when the material conditions for its solution are already present or at least in the course of formation. [2]
Eine Gesellschaftsformation geht nie unter, bevor alle Produktivkräfte entwickelt sind, für die sie weit genug ist, und neue höhere Produktionsverhältnisse treten nie an die Stelle, bevor die materiellen Existenzbedingungen derselben im Schoß der alten Gesellschaft selbst ausgebrütet worden sind. Daher stellt sich die Menschheit immer nur Aufgaben, die sie lösen kann, denn genauer betrachtet wird sich stets finden, daß die Aufgabe selbst nur entspringt, wo die materiellen Bedingungen ihrer Lösung schon vorhanden oder wenigstens im Prozeß ihres Werdens begriffen sind. [3]

Text used for Capital Volume I[edit]

I have used the 1906 Charles H. Kerr & Company text. Translated by Samuel Moore and Edward Aveling as printed in 1933 by Modern Library Giant no.G26. It by far captures the "bite" of the original German and has a very special "printing history" in America. I know that some purists out there don't agree with everything...but after care full consideration this is the text of choice.. When I can acquire a reading copy of the original three volume set I will continue..--Oracleofottawa 02:09, 16 October 2009 (UTC)

It is done...--Oracleofottawa 07:29, 25 July 2010 (UTC)

"The oppressed are allowed once every few years to decide which particular representatives of the oppressing class shall represent and repress them in parliament."[edit]

This is under 'misattributed' and it says that Lenin actually wrote it in State and Revolution. I've just looked at the online text of State and Revolution at, however, and it says this:

"Marx grasped this essence of capitalist democracy splendidly when, in analyzing the experience of the Commune, he said that the oppressed are allowed once every few years to decide which particular representatives of the oppressing class shall represent and repress them in parliament!" (Chapter 2)

Lenin doesn't give a reference here, so I'm not sure which of Marx's writings he's referring to. Surely it would be misleading to attribute the quote to Lenin, as it's simply a paraphrase of Marx. Obviously the best thing would be to find Marx's original phrasing, but I don't have the time to do that unfortunately.

Marx's original statement was "Instead of deciding once in three or six years which member of the ruling class was to misrepresent the people in Parliament" referring to the commune of Paris in his "The Civil War in France". --Khaled Khalil 18:28, 5 December 2011 (UTC)

(whitewashing) Marx and Anti-Semitism[edit]

Firstly, I have removed a quote attributed to Marx being "What is the secular basis of Judaism? Practical need, self-interest. What is the secular cult of the Jew? Haggling. What is his secular God? Money."

Marx said that, but only as a reply to those very claims made by Bruno Bauer in his work "The Jewish Question" to which Marx replied to with "On the Jewish Question". Marx was using Bauer's own assumptions and claims against him to show him that even with such "qualities", his argument would hold no water at all. What people have done here in and on other websites is take the paraphrased line out of context and copy/paste it to show Marx as being anti-Semitic when the reality is otherwise.

A good reply and clarification on this issue as well as context can be found here:

And the same one as a comment here:

This is a case of out of context quotation, cherry picking purely for defamation.

Secondly, I have also removed another supposed quote that is attributed to Marx, the one excerpt from the “The Russian Loan,” published in the Ne -York Daily Tribune on January 4, 1856. Of course, if we take a look at the actual article in question, no credit or reference is given to Marx. The articles from the newspaper as scans can be found below:

And a readable and enlarged version can be found here: also has a list of articles written by both Marx and Engels, but nowhere can we find an entry by the title "The Russian Loan" or any content related to that entry. The list can be found here:

And this is a case of misquoting for malice or otherwise.


It's Marx Text:

--Inal31 (talk) 22:51, 22 June 2014 (UTC)

There is some disputing of that here:

I don't have much problem with the attribution, but it is seemingly contested. It would be useful to have further confirmation of this, or a possible note on the controversy confirming the quotation's validity.

- -- 18:19, 9 January 2017 (UTC)

I can see no attribution on the paper of this article to Marx: 15:50, 7 July 2017 (UTC)