The Communist Manifesto

Topics: Marxism, Communism, Feminism Pages: 3 (951 words) Published: June 10, 2013
Peetra A. Cartwright

English Composition 121

Lecturer: Dr. Samuel P. Bain

Textual Analysis Essay

Draft 1

“All men are created equal.”In the Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, the writings are closely linked with economic and social domination with class, with little attention to the inequalities linked with gender. Marx did not comment much on the system of gender domination prevalent in his own time and he was not publicly associated with the contemporary movement for the emancipation of women-contrast his silence with the writings of John Stuart Mill, for example (Mill). Feminism and women played an important role in the development of communist institutions. The pattern and treatment of women is still observed today in many communist countries.

Marx and Engels offer criticisms of the bourgeois family and the exploitation of women. “The bourgeois has not even a suspicion that the real point aimed at is to do away with the status of women as mere instruments of production” (Engels sect.1) The critiques provide little insight into the ways gender relations and the social institutions of the family affect the life situations of women. They also failed to identify structural ways in which women were denied access to political positions, economic opportunity and basic components of health assurance. Frederick Engels devoted more extensive attention to issues surrounding sex, gender and the family in his anthropological book, (F. Engels). Engels argued that great historical variety in the sexual and reproductive practices of primates and human groups. He offers a historical hypothesis for the emergence of the paired-couple family: the emergence of private property and slavery. Neither Marx nor Engels offered a coherent statement of socialist feminism and neither offered specific commentary of criticism of the political, social and economic disadvantages by women in nineteenth century Europe.

However, the fundamental...
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