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/edu/ - Education

'The weapon of criticism cannot, of course, replace criticism of the weapon, material force must be overthrown by material force; but theory also becomes a material force as soon as it has gripped the masses.' - Karl Marx
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This article claims that Marx's "Poverty of Philosophy" is just a slanderous book that has nothing to do with Proudhon's real theories.

Marx doesn't properly quote Proudhon or openly strawmans him. His claims about Proudhon being bad economist in the begining of the book sound laughable since Proudhon was respected economist in his time.

>Comparing Marx’s “reply” to what Proudhon actually wrote, it is hard to take the former seriously. Once the various distortions and inventions are corrected, little remains. Proudhon was right to suggest Marx’s work was “a tissue of crudities, slanders, falsifications, and plagiarism.” (Correspondance [Paris: Lacroix, 1875] II: 267-8) Worse, Marx himself twenty years later embraces in Capital most of the positions he attacks Proudhon for holding in 1847.

>The dishonesty of The Poverty of Philosophy has distorted our view of Proudhon’s ideas and the time is long overdue for a revaluation of Proudhon and his contributions to anarchism and the wider socialist movement. This does not mean that Marx does not, occasionally, presents a valid point – most obviously, Proudhon’s opposition to strikes was wrong as subsequent anarchists recognised – it is just that these are frustratingly few in the midst of so much distortion. So, yes, Proudhon’s mutualism – a form of market socialism based on worker-run co-operatives – does need to be critiqued but Marx’s book is simply not that work.

are there any counter arguments to this?


another proudhonist critique of "The poverty of philosophy" but in russian


> Is "The Poverty of Philosophy" full of slander ahd lies?
Just like their work on Stirner and everything they ever wrote about Bakunin.


>Just like their work on Stirner and everything they ever wrote about Bakunin.

yeah, but "The Poverty of Philosophy" is comsidered to be one of the most important works of marxism

is it even worthy to read? the author of the article claims that Marx strawmanned Proudhon's positions


You answered your own question. It's worth reading simply to witness a young Marx at his most polemical. I don't think many marxists today have even read it. Perhaps it might be useful update some of his arguments so as to critique the renewed interest in market socialism we've seen over the past, I don't know, 15 years? For example, Gavin Mueller cited it in his critique of what he called "Digital Proudhonism" in a piece he wrote back in 2018:


Predictably, someone at Center for a Stateless Society ("A Left Wing Market Anarchist Think Tank") responded:



C4SS's reply basically just repeats what was already attacked in the original article by Mueller (which is a good read btw). All this makes me even more sure that The Poverty of Philosophy is not slander.


There is a lot of value in the book. It features:
A clear explanation of the hegelian system
The failures of the hegelian system
Incredibly entertaining polemic (Marx will literally work a joke into the structure of his argument and hit you with it 2 pages later)
Creates a clear refutation of market socialism.
It does contain some straw men of M. Proudhon but it's worth the read regardless.


First thing he does in the video is talking about "muh dictatorship of proletariat is bad because it is dictatorship and not democracy". It is a retarded lib video, not worth wasting your time even watching.


no, he doesn't
he says that MLs are communists and as communists they should support direct democracy (at least somewhere in the future) and not to openly support dictatorship which is what Politsturm did in their article.

also, he isn't a lib but an anarchist


btw, is "The philosophy of Misery" by Proudhon worth of reading?




It’s a polemic, polemics are aggressive.


Soviets are direct democracy, idiot.


Critique of market socialism is important, but a lot of Marxists erroneously believe that because Proudhon thought markets could work that all anarchists also believe that.

Similar situation for the response of Marxists to other anarchists. There's rarely any actual engagement with the criticism. It seems Marxists are at times more interested in "winning the argument" in terms of public opinion rather than arriving at correct answers. Not to get too Great Man about this but it does seem to be a bit of a habit that was legitimized by Marx and picked up from him by his followers. He was malding pretty hard over people like Bakunin and Stirner in particular and was ultimately more influenced by his critics than he would ever dare admit. In the long run it's really just harmful to be this way and be unwilling to deal with theoretical criticism because it gets in the way of improving the movement in the future.


>He was malding pretty hard over people like Bakunin and Stirner
Probably true, though i personally i have not enough knowledge on Marx vs anarchist polemic to really talk about it.

However, i think it is worth pointing out that. despite what people like >>3577 say, Marx did in fact have an important influence on Bakunin and didn't just straw man him:
>As far as learning was concerned, Marx was, and still is, incomparably more advanced than I. I knew nothing at that time of political economy, I had not yet rid myself of my metaphysical observations… He called me a sentimental idealist and he was right; I called him a vain man, perfidious and crafty, and I also was right.

Also as sidenote, did Bakunin ever told Marx to literally go fuck himself? I remember seeing a quote like that some 4/5 years being attributed to him and thought it was pretty funny at the time.


Well yeah Bakunin and most anarchists today (who aren't just liberal larpers) do agree with Marx's critique of capitalism at least in a broad sense. Marx is essential. It's just that he would sometimes make poor criticisms (usually when the people he was criticizing made a good point against him). Most of his criticisms are extremely on point though, including some of anarchists.

IDK about that quote but that sounds funny.


File: 1670848092950.jpg (50.38 KB, 720x736, 20220319_132118.jpg)

Yes there are counter arguments:

Just fucking read the book and stop caring about anarchists, the latter is an effect of the former.

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