Marx, Karl (Heinrich)

Marx, Karl (Heinrich)

biographical name

(born May 5, 1818, Trier, Rhine province, Prussia [Ger.]—died March 14, 1883, London, Eng.) German political philosopher, economic theorist, and revolutionary. He studied humanities at the University of Bonn (1835) and law and philosophy at the University of Berlin (1836–41), where he was exposed to the works of G.W.F. Hegel. Working as a writer in Cologne and Paris (1842–45), he became active in leftist politics. In Paris he met Friedrich Engels, who would become his lifelong collaborator. Expelled from France in 1845, he moved to Brussels, where his political orientation matured and he and Engels made names for themselves through their writings. Marx was invited to join a secret left-wing group in London, for which he and Engels wrote the Communist Manifesto (1848). In that same year, Marx organized the first Rhineland Democratic Congress in Germany and opposed the king of Prussia when he dissolved the Prussian Assembly. Exiled, he moved to London in 1849, where he spent the rest of his life. He worked part-time as a European correspondent for the New York Tribune (1851–62) while writing his major critique of capitalism, Das Kapital (3 vol., 1867–94). He was a leading figure in the First International from 1864 until the defection of Mikhail Bakunin in 1872. See also Marxism; communism; dialectical materialism.

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