The Communists consider it dishonourable to conceal their views and intentions. They openly declare that their goals can only be achieved by forcibly overthrowing the existing social order in its entirety. Let the ruling classes tremble before the communist revolution! The proletarians have nothing to lose, except their shackles. They can conquer the whole world.
Communist party manifesto (1848)
The economic development of the 19th century emphasized the urgency of addressing social issues. These problems became a breeding ground for the search for idealistic solutions in the form of “utopian socialism” or anarchism. In February 1848 in London the Communist Party Manifesto was published for the first time, its authors being the Trier born Karl Marx (1818 -1883), a trained lawyer, and Friedrich Engels, the son of a factory owner from Barmen. In this manifesto, the German authors described the path to the communist seizure of power, which they described as the supposed revolutionary vanguard of the proletariat. Although it was just a small publication in size, it became the programmatic starting point for radical left wing tendencies. Marxists believed in the necessity of revolutionary changes to society. According to their teachings, the state was the basic political and economic organization of class society, the main means of power of the economically ruling class, protecting the given social order and suppressing the resistance of the exploited classes. After the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat, a classless communist society was to be created. Proponents of Marxism were among the founders of the First International (1864) and the Second International (1889).
Karl Marx (National museum)
A barricade created by the supporters of the Paris Commune in 1871. The three month revolutionary government also appealed to Marxism (photo: Bruno Braquehais / BHVP)
The second Czech edition of the Communist Manifesto (National library of the Czech republic)
In 1878, the Czechoslovak Social Democratic Party was founded in the U Kaštanu pub in Prague’s Břevnov district. The first chairman was Josef Boleslav Pecka, a memorial plaque to whom is located in Prague’s Pohořelec street (photo: Matěj Baťha / Wikimedia)
Picture from the visit of Prime Minister Antonín Zápotocký to an exhibition on the history of the communist party at the Liberation Memorial in Vítkov in 1948 (Antonín Zápotocký is pictured)
(Antonín Zápotocký ve fotografii)