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Marx And Arendt's Analysis

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Marx and Arendt are two brilliant political theorists who pose different concerns, beliefs and ideals when it comes to the relationship between economics and freedom. Marx defines freedom as creative self- actualization which contrasts Arendt’s definition of freedom as worldly and eruptive action. Marx’s definition is more focused on the individual, which in turn will better society while Arendt is more focused on action as community. Marx believes in a society free from economic oppression by the elite while Arendt believes in one where poverty and politics do not meet. Economics and freedom, according to Marx, are intertwined in such a way that they cannot be separated. Freedom is inherently correlated with economics, which is why Marx believes…show more content…
Freedom, according the Arendt, is worldly, eruptive action. This action often takes the form of revolution. Revolution is the combination of liberation and free although there is a distinct difference between the two. Liberation is over throwing some form of government while freedom is the founding of a new government. Ardent uses the French and American revolutions as examples throughout her writing. She views the French Revolution as an act of liberation. The driving force behind the revolution came from the poor. The needs of the poor were not being met so they overthrew the government without a plan to found a new one. The American revolution was successful because it had the plan to reform government. It was driven by the idea of a new form of government rather than meeting the needs of the poor. Arendt discusses the American revolution and the difference of liberties and freedoms when she writes, “All these liberties, to which we might add our own claims to be free from want and fear, are of course essentially negative; they are the results of liberation but they are by no means the actual content of freedom, which…is participation in public affairs” (Arendt 22). She argues that participation is public affairs is the epitome of freedom. Individuals must partake in politics in order to be free. Arendt sees happiness as a state of rest…show more content…
Both political theorists are extreme in their visions and neither seem entirely attainable but they are both inspiring ideals of what society could achieve. Although Arendt makes a very persuasive argument for economics and freedom as separate from one another, Marx’s argument is more convincing. Socialism presents every individual with the opportunity to live the best life suited for their own creative development. If every individual is creating what they want to create and the benefit of their creation goes towards the entire community than there is no reason for economic classes. The idea of socialism and communism may be slightly unrealistic and challenging to implement but in a utopian society, Marx’s view of the political structure is ideal. Arendt argues that there is no place for poverty in politics but Marx makes the point that poverty must be eliminated first so that politics can flourish. The only way to eliminate poverty is through the political system and the overthrow of the elite. As long as there is economic oppression, freedom is not attainable for every citizen. The separation of economics and freedom is unrealistic because money controls the actions of the people. The poor cannot be free to self-actualize while they are still subject to the bourgeoisie. To Arendt, the poor are not even capable of being free because they are consumed by want. Marx does not see
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