Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels defined, in their work, the Communist Manifesto, the term class conflict as “athe idea that the social order is divided into classes based on conflicting economic interests.” They cited such historical examples as “freeman and slave, patrician and phleban (aristocrat and commoner, in the ancient world), lord and serf, guild-master (master craftsman) and journeyman (who worked for a guild-master), in a word, oppressor and oppressed.”
According to the Manifesto, the State’s role in the class conflict is that of the “bourgeoisie,” the capitalists. It is described as a pitiless, oppressive class, the “leaders of whole industrial armies,” with the executive ot the modern state being “but a committee for managing the common affairs of the whole bourgeoisie.”
The working class, or “proletariat,” as described in the Manifesto, by the control of the bourgeoisie, suffered losses of natural social ties and basic freedoms. They are the “privates of the industrial army,” described as “daily and hourly slaves to the machine,” and were subjected to “naked, shameless, direct, brutal exploitation.”
The Manifesto asserts that capitalist society, despite its power and control, is doomed because of ever increasing numbers of the proletariat, and that, by their evoplving organization and control, they shall become the new dominating class, thys making capitalism incompatible with the (new) society.
I agree with the Manifesto statement,”The ruling class ideas of each age have ever been the ideas of its ruling class.” This is basically because I also believe the Manfesto theory regarding the parallel of the changes in mankind’s consciousness with the changes in his physical and spiritual existence. Above this, I believe that the majority does indeed have the rule. And given the theory of the Manifesto, the statement is logically sound. However, to be literally true, the statement should be: The class with the majority of wealth has the rule.
Despite the genuine intellect of the theory, Karl Marx’s predictions of the Communist Manifesto have not come to pass. I believe there is a multitude of reason for the failure of the predictions, including the overwhelming power and appeal of the capitalist system, man’s diverse phychological makeup within the classes themselves, making the causal basis of the commumist theory to be basically over simplistic.