Karl Marx has ratings and 69 reviews. William2 said: Excellent biography. Herr Marx was a nasty motherfucker. If you did not agree with him, he vilif. In this magisterial biography of Karl Marx, “likely to be definitive for many years to come” (John Gray, New York Review of Books), historian Jonathan Sperber. This is not a book about how Karl Marx changed the world. It is not about the revolutions and crimes committed in his name in the 20th century.

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Sperber wants to demystify Marx and in order to do so he draws on all sorts of detailed stories and expert insights.

Trivia About Karl Marx: Paradoxically this results in some myth-making of his own. Then sheds light on the particular subject with his own seemingly objective view. His criticism was a declaration that most economists were living in a completely different intellectual world from the one Marx had inhabited. The Right rages at him to this day as the inveterate foe of the capitalist status quo; the Left venerates the thinker who so effectively highlighted the anarchic and destabilising effects of capitalism.

What to do with these poor? Sperber certainly lives up to his subtitle, portraying Marx in the context of the 19th century.

Karl Marx: A Nineteenth-Century Life by Jonathan Sperber

It is a demystifying mission which does not make Marx any less interesting — certainly an achievement which requires a greatly skilled historian. See all 60 reviews. Indeed, he was a life-long champion of free-trade, feeling that it facilitated the still-comparatively progressive cause of the bourgeoisie over feudalism in Europe.

Marx was idealized as a person and a thinker, and those elements of his thought were highlighted that bore jonathaan relevance to contemporary concerns.


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Follow Telegraph Books on Twitter. The author returns again and again to Marx and Engel’s difficult relationship with their fellow revolutionaries communist, socialist,German, European. They both completed degrees in philosophy and were frustrated in their ambition to attain positions in German universities. At its core was not an epic crisis of capitalism there had been too many false dawns for thatbut the question that David Ricardo and Adam Smith had been wrestling with since the late s: Yet none of these texts provided much materialism for Marx.

Karl Marx: A Nineteenth-Century Life, by Jonathan Sperber, review

He rightly notes, of course, that Marx failed to observe many things that would become especially important in the twentieth century West: The book also shows that the racialization of Jewish people has been a relatively recent occurrence. I would like to thank Diana Siclovan for her thoughtful and eminently sensible review of my biography of Karl Marx. It’s hard to write a book about Marx. Marx breathes in these pages. Pulitzer Prize Nominee for Biography or Autobiography In a new biography of Karl Marx, the historian Jonathan Sperber set out to explain his subject in the context of nineteenth-century circumstances and attitudes.

He perfectly combines the three essential aspects of his life: Phase Two Issue I learned that he wrote much, much more as a journalist than as a theorist; that he was a perfectionist who had to be nagged by Engels and by Jenny to get his work in.

All eyes were then, in retrospect tragically, on Trotsky rather than Stalin. Let me just explain what I was trying to do in those two chapters.

In contrast to Francis Wheen’s raucous account of Marx’s life as hack, brigand and rapscallion, Sperber places the history of ideas at the heart of his study. Try the Kindle edition and experience these great reading features: He looked to the French Revolution, to the philosopher G.


Karl Marx | W. W. Norton & Company

This is an incredibly satisfying biography for anyone interested in an objective view of Marx. Incorrect Page Count ; “Karl Marx: It has for example become common in popular writing on Marx to begin with the claim that his ideas need to sperbre better understood given the most recent crisis of capitalism. Monday 31 December Learn more about Amazon Giveaway.

Also, key aspects of his thought are lost in the failure to consider his ideas and life in the context mrx his times.

He did not want to see his economic writings limited to a ghettoized existence in a labor movement promoting a counterculture to the established bourgeois capitalist world; he had yearned for a public confrontation in the established newspapers, magazines, and scholarly journals of his day, and was frustrated when it failed to materialized.

Deeply researched but highly readable, this is a biography to savor. He traces the development of Marx from his Young Hegelian roots to a theorist influenced by, but in many ways working against, scientific positivism.

How far does Sperber succeed in de-mystifying Marx? Refresh and try again. Engels complained that Marx would get side-tracked for months in the details of Russian peasant labor wage data and make no progress.

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