Special pages :
Remarks On Dr. Johann Plenge’s “Marx and Hegel”. Tübingen, 1911
Source: Lenin Collected Works, 4th Edition, Moscow, 1976, Volume 38, pp. 388-391
Publisher: Progress Publishers
First Published: 1933 in Lenin Miscellany XXII. Published according to the manuscript
DR. JOHANN PLENGE
MARX UND HEGEL
|After a pretentious introduction (How I,
I, I “read” Hegel and Marx) follows an
essay of the Hegelian “doctrine” that is
extremely shallow (idealism is not distin-
guished from “speculation,” very, very few
things have been grasped; still there is
some good in this essay as compared with
Kantianism, etc.). Then, comes a critic-
ism of Marx which is altogether nonsens-
|Marx is being accused of “pure ideology,”
when by “actual” proletarian he meansa representative of a class. (82)
|“Now the strong language of the apos-
tate, who decisively renounced any sort
of idealism ... now the ideal demand of
the political enthusiast—such is the actual-ity of Karl Marx.” (81-82)
|“It is passing strange that this Jewish
radical healer should have known all his
life just one universal remedy for all social
conditions that are in need of cure; critic-ism and political struggle.” (56)
|...Marx’s historical materialism is ac-
tually “nothing but ... a pathetical gesture,”
“an extremely rationalistic doctrine,” “in
its most profound basis an idealist examina-tion of society,” etc., etc. ... (83)
|...“agitational motives”... (84) (id. 86,
92 et al.) (115 et al.)
Marx borrowed “this natural-scientific
empiricism” (88), “Marx naturalises social
...“His” (Marx’s) “path is not that of the
thinker, but ... of the prophet of free-dom....”!!! (94-95)
|Socialist revolution = subjectivist hope
to present it as “an objectively scientific
cognition” is an illusion of an ecstatic
dreamer, an illusion which degenerated intocharlatanry” (p. 110).
|Marx “agitationally whipping up all the
instincts of hatred....” (115)
|“Marxism ... becomes ethics of abstract
negative, fanatical enthusiasm” (just like
Mohammedanism according to Hegel!)....
|...“Temperament of a fanatic” of
Marx (and his “hot head”)—that’s the point.
And more of such vulgar gibberish!
Whence this quotation? The author did
not give chapter and verse.
|—After quoting this passage without
giving its source Plenge continues: “‘The
political integument’ that will be hurled
aside is of course the whole of Marxism.”(129)
|Example of how Plenge criticises
|“By its gross exaggeration it brings to|
|a white heat the hard fact of capitalism
that the urge for profit lowers wages and
|worsens working conditions. But then it
suffers from the elementary mistake of du-
plication of concepts veiled by the termin-
ology used....” (157) .
..“Agitational requirements dictate that
the inflammatory theory of surplus-value
be given the most prominent place in theentire system....” (164)
|...“Marx is a revolutionary Jew of the
nineteenth century who has re-tailored the
garment borrowed from our great philos-
ophy to suit his ends.” (171)
- ↑ Imperialist economists—Lenin’s designation for the opportunists Bukharin, Pyatakov and Bosh in the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party (Bolsheviks) during the First World War. The “imperialist economists” demanded that the Party delete the programmatic statement on the right of nations to self-determination. They also came out against the entire minimum programme of the RSDLP, which envisaged a struggle for democratic reforms that would facilitate the preparation and transition to the socialist revolution. Lenin laid bare the opportunistic essence of the position of Bukharin and those sharing his views, its kinship with “economism”—the opportunistic trend in Russian Social-Democracy at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th. Like the old “economists,” who could not understand the need for the political struggle of the working class under conditions of capitalism, the “imperialist economists” did not understand the significance of the struggle for democratic reforms under conditions of imperialism.
Certain views of the “imperialist economists” were shared by Left Social-Democrats of Holland, America, Poland, etc. That is why Lenin called “imperialist economism” an “international disease” (Vol. 35, letter to Inessa Armand of November 30, 1916).
A number of articles by Lenin are devoted to a criticism of “imperialist economism”: “On the Incipient Trend of ‘Imperialist Economism’” (pres. ed., Vol. 23, pp. 10-15); “A Caricature of Marxism and Imperialist Economism” (pres. ed., Vol. 23, pp. 16-64).
- ↑ just”!!—Ed.
- ↑ hence the ire!!—Ed.
- ↑ See Critical Notes on the Article “The King of Prussia and Social Reform. By a Prussian”, the ¶ beginning: The “Prussian” must choose between....—KCG.
- ↑ The reference is to the Rheinische Zeitung für Politik, Handel und Gewerbe (Rhine Gazette on Problems of Politics, Trade and Industry)—a daily newspaper that appeared in Cologne from January 1, 1842 to March 31, 1843. It was founded by representatives of the Rhineland bourgeoisie who were opposed to Prussian absolutism. Marx joined its staff in April 1842 and became one of its editors in October of the same year. During Marx’s editorship, the revolutionary-democratic character of the newspaper became more and more marked. The newspaper was ultimately banned by the Prussian Government.
- ↑ theory of surplus-value—Ed.