But was Karl Marx, sometimes in collaboration with friend and political economist, Friedrich Engels (1820-1895) who revolutionized the relationship of material production and the role of human beings within social structures. He devoted a good part of his time to economic studies on the flaws of the capitalist society; and produced some famous works like the ‘Communist Manifesto’ (1848) and ‘Das Capital’ (1867), with one aim: the self-emancipation of the working class. Hegel (1770-1831) and Ludwig Feuerbach (1804 -1872) are two theorists who affected Marx very strongly.
The concept of Historical Materialism: In his ‘Introduction to Theses On Feuerbach’ (1845), Marx commences his own distinctive posit on Materialism, based on Feuerbach’s critique of Hegel’s ‘Theory of the Right’ (1821).His view of history is very different from the others. Marx, states that “it is not the consciousness of men that determines their being, but, on the contrary, their social being that determines their consciousness (Marx and Engels, 1859: pp 503-504). According to Hegel (1821), God created everything from Him, thus ‘God’ was the ‘Absolute Idea’. Then, due to the nature of the material world opposing God, the ‘negation’ or ‘alienation’ from God occurred; this was a dialectic or a clash of opposite forces; until a third stage of the growth of man’s consciousness, would reconcile with the ‘Absolute Idea’ and return to a state of original consciousness. It had at its centre that all events are predetermined by God. Feuerbach (1841) argued that, the faculty of thought, which is the property of human beings, was the ruling principle of existence, and not God, as theorized by Hegel, and love was what united them. Marx, while agreeing with Hegel in part by accepting the ‘clash of opposing forces’ notion, he rejected Hegel’s view of the ‘Absolute Idea’. Marx posited that ‘labour’ was the ‘essence