Marx and Engels had sketched out the principles of scientific communism by 1846. Yet it was from his intense involvement in the abortive German Revolution of 1848 that Marx developed a depth of practical understanding he would draw on in Capital and throughout his later career. This volume includes his great call to arms - "The Communist Manifesto" - but also shows how tactical alliances with the bourgeoisie failed, after which Marx became firmly committed to independent workers' organizations and the ideal of permanent revolution. The articles offer trenchant analyses of events in France, Poland, Prague, Berlin and Vienna, while speeches set out changing communist tactics. In a new introduction, the major socialist feminist writer Sheila Rowbotham examines this period of Marx's life and how it shaped his political perspective.
Karl Marx was not only the great theorist of capitalism, he was also a superb journalist, politician and historian. He studied law and philosophy at the universities of Bonn and Berlin, completing his doctorate in 1841. Expelled from Prussia in 1844, he took up residence first in Paris and then in London where, in 1867, he published his magnum opus Capital. A cofounder of the International Workingmen's Association in 1864, Marx died in London in 1883.