Karl Marx

Marx was born in the year 1818 on 5th may and deceased on 14th march 1883 in Germany. It is noted that he was born from a wealthy family in Prussian Rhineland given that he was bale to study in universities of Berlin and Bonn where he became introduced in the ideals of the Hegelians. He started working on materialist conceptions of history. he was able to meet Friedrich Engels, with whom he collaborated and befriended. He later exiled into London where he continued with his works on economic and social activities by formulation of various theories on these phenomena. His works have been critical in highlighting that human societies develop because of the struggles between classes. He noted that there was a significant conflict between the ownership class and the laboring class. This has been attributed to his background of a wealthy family and exposure to interactions with individuals from humble backgrounds while he attended university in Germany (Marx, & Kamenka, 1983). He called for elimination of capitalism by the working class to develop a classless society by the laboring class.

He has been termed as critical in understanding social and economic theories. He has been termed as among the primary revolutionaries of modern day social sciences. Karl Marx took up after his father Heinrich Marx who was concerned with the ideas of Immanuel Kant (Ollman, & Anderson, 2012). The classical liberal environment and the calls for social change introduced Karl Marx to the need to change the Prussian society, which was then governed by a monarchy. Through this experiences and exposure, Karl Marx was able to develop critical theoretical models to enable people to understand the differences between capitalism, socialism, and communism (Marx, & Kamenka, 1983). He was able to develop theoretical models and ideas on the most effective strategies of governance, which could ensure the presence of an equal and classless society. Furthermore, his exposure to Hegelians during his study at the university enhanced his desire to explore classical liberalism, which had grown in popularity as well as widespread opposition by the government against this movement.

Michel Foucault

Michel Foucault was born on 15 October 1926 and passed on 25 June 1984. His work has been revered for addressing the interactions between knowledge and power and their respective utilizations as tools for social control. He was born to a wealthy middle class family in Poitiers, France, and educated in various institutions such as École Normale Supérieure and Lycée Henri-IV in France. His works have been critical in demonstration that power is not dependent on authority and material relations rather on discursive networks. The new perspective provided by Foucault has been used to understand issues such as social discipline, image, truth, normative sexuality amongst others.

In Madness and Unreason: History of Madness in the Classical Age, 1961, Foucault eliminated the possibility of separation of reason and madness into two distinctive categories (Foucault, Rabinow, & Faubion, 1997). He undertook this through studying the distinctive features of both madness and sanity. He derived his ideas from Descartes’ work First Meditation in which he accused Descartes of doubting all elements expect his sanity thus eliminating madness from the famous hyperbolic doubt ideology. His work has been critical in analysis of philosophy, which he drew an interest given the societal focus on philosophy as a means of developing theoretical models to solve social and economic problems in modern Europe. His works focused on developing a link between history and philosophy, which critics have termed as irreconcilable. His works have been critical to the structuralist movement and subsequent post-structuralist movements by enabling an understanding between social networks, power, and control.























Foucault, M., Rabinow, P., & Faubion, J. D. (1997). The essential works of Michel Foucault, 1954-1984. New York: New Press.

Marx, K., & Kamenka, E. (1983). The portable Karl Marx. Harmondsworth, Middlesex, England: Penguin Books.

Ollman, B., & Anderson, K. (2012). Karl Marx. Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate.


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