Marxism is the political philosophy and economic worldview based upon a materialist interpretation of history, a Marxist analysis of capitalism, a theory of social change, and anatheist view of human liberation derived from the work of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels; three primary aspects of Marxism are:
- The dialectical and materialist concept of history — Humankind's history is fundamentally that of the struggle between social classes. The productive capacity of society is the foundation of society, and as this capacity increases over time the social relations of production, class relations, evolve through this struggle of the classes and pass through definite stages (primitive communism, slavery, feudalism, capitalism). The legal, political, ideological and other aspects (ex. art) of society are derived from these production relations as is the consciousness of the individuals of which the society is composed.
- The critique of capitalism — In capitalist society, an economic minority (the bourgeoisie) dominate and exploit the working class (proletariat) majority. Marx uncovered the interworkings of capitalist exploitation, the specific way in which unpaid labor (surplus value)is extracted from the working class labor theory of value, extending and critiquing the work of earlier political economists value. Although the production process is socialized, ownership remains in the hand of the bourgeosie. This forms the fundamental contradiction of capitalist society. Without the elimination of the fetter of the private ownership of the means of production, human society is unable to achieve further development.
- Advocacy of proletarian revolution — In order to overcome the fetters of private property the working class must seize political power internationally through a social revolution and expropriate the capitalist classes around the world and place the productive capacities of society into collective ownership. Upon this material foundation classes would be abolished and the material basis for all forms of inequality between humankind would dissolve.