The Communist Manifesto and the Environment

The Communist Manifesto and the Environment,” in Leo Panitch and Colin Leys, ed., The Socialist Register, 1998 (London: Merlin Press), pp. 169-89.

Most of the debate about Marx’s relation to environmental thought has focused on the early philosophical critique of capitalism in his Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844 and on his later economic critique embodied in Capital in the 1860s – since in both of these works he had a great deal to say about human interactions with nature. Nevertheless, the Communist Manifesto has often been invoked as presenting a view that was anti-ecological – some would say the very definition of anti-ecological modernism.

  • Reprinted in Dave Holmes, Terry Townsend, and John Bellamy Foster, Change the System, Not the Planet (pamphlet), Chippendale, Australia: Resistance Books, 2007, 27-43.

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