1. Critical points of Marx’s and Engel’s Communist Manifesto
1.1. Class struggle
One of the most essential premises of Marx’s works is that “The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles” (Marx; Engels 1848: 14). This is a strong assertion to make and it must be understood in the historical context Marx lived in. Europe was a very unstable place at that time and philosophy was a powerful weapon. The industrial revolution promised devastation and alienation and Marx needed to oversimplify history to create a philosophy that would revolutionize society. This Darwinian theory of the formation of society is true but not essential to society, and that’s what Marx failed to notice. The same as Darwin failed to notice that evolution can take place without rivalry or life threats, Marx couldn’t conceive the idea of a society without class struggle. The only solution, according to Marx, was for the proletarians to take over and abolish private property, converting everyone into communists. But the same as post-Darwinian theories started emerging, with symbiosis and coherence as its basic principles, economic theories should get rid of the competition factor as essential to societies.
In post-Darwinian theories, evolution is the result of ontogenetic change -a change in the usage of genetic memory- and not the result of mutations, as in Darwinian theories. In post-Darwinism, the reason of the change is not the environment but the organism itself, and DNA is not the determinant of the structure and behavior of an organism but a thesaurus whose entries can be used according to the needs of the organism. Also the role of sex is not so relevant for evolution in post-Darwinian theories, because the function of sexual reproduction is to create species by forgetting unnecessary genetic memory, and not to provide new genetic variants as in Darwinian theories. Although there are newer theories, such as neo-Darwinism, which resume Darwinian principles, post-Darwinism presents a coherent alternative to Darwinism and it must be taken into account when developing a social theory. The advantages of post-Darwinism over Darwinism are evident: post-Darwinism is not as deterministic as Darwinism and therefore it empowers people and helps them build the society they want rather than submitting themselves to natural laws of society.
Instead of seeing class struggle as a necessary condition of the evolution of society, we can see it simply as a byproduct. This doesn’t affect the goal: The transition towards a society without classes. It simply affects the way: Struggle is no longer needed to achieve this goal. Symbiosis and coherence can replace competition and rivalry in the socio-economic sphere. A revolution is no longer needed but a good analysis of the conditions of change and a conciliation of interests.
This is part of the book: Neo-communism, written by Juan Martin Sanchez.