Communism is "not a state of the future, but the real movement which destroys the existing state of being."
The German Ideology, by Marx
When Karl Marx came up with his ideology he was probably envisioning George Orwell’s novel 1984 (to be written many years past his time). In a sense at least. Marx talked about socialism and how it came about because of the struggle between the class systems, constantly in contradiction with one another causing rifts and separations. After analyzing this system he came to the conclusion that capitalism brought about the oppression of the working class, or the proletarians that Orwell called them. These people are the ones that make up the majority of the population and are the ones that maintain the upkeep of the economy’s wealth and income.
Althusser, a Marxist philosopher, proposed a new definition of philosophy as class struggle in theory. The struggle of the working class serving, living, creating, slaving, for the well being and selfishness of the upper class. The majority of the population is led to believe that they are happy to do things for the upper class, because the upper class are educated and smarter than they are and know what they are doing; the upper class wants the best for the working class and makes their decisions for them. Although the people in the working class are nothing more than a mere number in the work force, they are still thought about and are cared for…or so they believe. This same thing can be seen in George Orwell’s novel 1984. Big Brother is the big man in charge who makes the decisions for everyone who works for him and does what he says.
But something went wrong in George Orwell’s world in the novel. One man decided to revolt against Big Brother and the people in power because he felt as though he was being cheated in life. Although the character in the book is actually a part of the upper class and is not revolting against the rich because he is not making just as much as they are, he is still revolting for something better. It’s a reversed revolution in the book but is still a revolution for the betterment of the self.
Althusser uses the Marxist theory pertaining to communism and how the class system does not allow for any shifts in status. Either you are poor and in the working class or you are rich and in the upper class. You can not be promoted to the upper from the lower class. In 1984, we see this same ideology put into play. Those who are in the same position as the main character cannot go against Big Brother’s orders and creeds and if they do so and veer away from their positions and into that of the prole’s then they are to be punished. The character realizes that the life he has, has robbed him of his individuality and therefore decides to break away from it all; a sort of revolt if you will.
Word Count: 510