Karl Marx: His Life and Works
Publisher: Viking Press
Year Published: 1943 First Published: 1928
Resource Type: Book
Cx Number: CX10824
Therewith our appraisement of Marx's personality has likewise been profoundly modified. Whereas persons of the last generation, in view of the opposing nature of their interests, reflected in their ideology, looked upon Marx either as a criminal disturber of the peace and a devil, or else as a saint and as an infallible pope-those of our own generation can admit him to have been a man equipped both with human weaknesses and with human strengths, both with human vices and with human virtues. We are, indeed, compelled to regard him thus, unless we would refuse to apply the materialist interpretation of history to individuals as well as to general processes. Marx had to be an obstinate, pig-headed, intolerant thinker and investigator; had to regard other people's opinions with suspicion; had to be hostile towards every alien trend; had to be cantankerous, dictatorial, fanatically obsessed with the rightness of his own convictions, fiercely opposed to any deviations from, any falsifications of, his ideas. He had to concentrate his genius, his understanding, his creative energy, for decade after decade, upon this one point, upon this one scientific task; had to neglect his calling, his family, his livelihood, his friends.