By David Leopold

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The younger Karl Marx is an cutting edge and demanding examine of Marx's early writings. those writings give you the interesting spectacle of a strong and innovative mind wrestling with complicated and demanding concerns, yet additionally they current bold interpretative stumbling blocks to trendy readers. David Leopold indicates how an figuring out in their highbrow and cultural context can light up the political measurement of those works. An erudite but available dialogue of Marx's impacts and ambitions frames the author's serious engagement with Marx's account of the emergence, personality, and (future) alternative of the fashionable nation. this mix of historic and analytical ways ends up in a sympathetic, yet now not uncritical, exploration of such primary issues as alienation, citizenship, group, anti-semitism, and utopianism. The younger Karl Marx is a scholarly and unique paintings which supplies an intensive and persuasive reinterpretation of Marx's advanced and sometimes misunderstood perspectives of German philosophy, glossy politics, and human flourishing.

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Additional info for The Young Karl Marx: German Philosophy, Modern Politics, and Human Flourishing (Ideas in Context)

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32 Despite the wording of this particular formulation, Marx is emphatically not claiming that recent history had bypassed the German states entirely. After all, he elaborates, Germany is not Russia; nor – rehearsing the point with a classical (and obscure) allusion to Anacharsis (and Hegel) – is Germany’s relation to modernity analogous to the position of the Scythians 27 29 30 28 Ibid. 337/133/200 and ‘Kritik: Einleitung’ 381/178/247. ‘Briefwechsel von 1843’ 337/133/199. ‘Kritik: Einleitung’ 381/178/247 and ‘Briefwechsel von 1843’ 337/133/200.

The present work is organised around three central chapters. These are concerned, broadly speaking, with the emergence, character, and (future) replacement of the modern state, respectively. Each chapter seeks to elaborate and illuminate Marx’s account of these topics through an examination of one of the central critical targets of, or formative influences on, the early writings. In Chapter 2, I portray the critical engagement (in the Kritik and elsewhere) with Hegel’s Rechtsphilosophie as providing the frame of reference in which Marx introduces his own understanding of the historical emergence of the modern state.

21 (Generalisations are difficult, but where representative institutions existed, they were typically subordinated to the monarch and nobility, and based on a highly restricted franchise. Voting functioned not as an expression of popular will but as a symbolic affirmation of the established order. 23 Marx reiterates this claim about the political backwardness of ‘actual’ German history in a variety of parallel tropes. In two of the most striking of these characterisations, Germany appears as neophyte and laughingstock.

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