more from Karl Marx

Single Idea 5298

[catalogued under 22. Metaethics / A. Ethics Foundations / 2. Source of Ethics / e. Human nature]

Full Idea

The human essence is no abstraction inherent in each single individual; in its reality it is the ensemble of the social relations.

Gist of Idea

The human essence is not found in individuals but in social relations


Karl Marx (Theses on Feuerbach [1846], §VI)

Book Reference

Marx,K./Engels,F.: 'The German Ideology', ed/tr. Arthur,C.J. [Lawrence and Wishart 1985], p.122

A Reaction

This is a key Marxist doctrine, and the central difference from Aristotle. Personally I am more with Aristotle, but the truth obviously lies somewhere in between. Man must be a 'social being', or there wouldn't be any social relations.