The socialist theories of Marx and Engel in this chapter are opposed by Bakunin and Kenafick who advocate for the proletariat to seize political power (29). They demand that the bourgeoisie is destroyed by the proletariat, sharing the power and profits of dominating and managing the countryside proletariat (Bakunin and Kenafick 30). This would be effective according to them, not until the rural proletariat revolts and demolishes all types of class and power serving the State. Bakunin however disputes this idea arguing that seizure of political and economic power and dominance by the proletariat of the towns would only lead to exploitation of the masses represented by the working class living in the countryside (Bakunin and Kenafick 30). He suggests a universal emancipation of the masses represented by the proletariat regardless of their nation and degree of civilization (Bakunin and Kenafick 32). According to him, total emancipation of the masses is represented by liberty and solidarity of the masses guaranteed by eradicating any forms of control propagated by the socialists (Bakunin and Kenafick 33).
According to Marx and Engel, the political situation in any country is subject to the economic condition prevalent. Consequently, the political situation can only improve when the economic condition transforms and improves for the better (Bakunin and Kenafick 30). Bakunin challenges this idea expressing that Marx ignores the role played by religious, political and judicial systems in any economic environment.
While the idea of a complete emancipation of the masses is noble, it is highly unrealistic and unattainable. The idea of eradicating all forms or governance and political laws would be a recipe for chaos and injustice whereby the less fortunate in the society are exploited by those with greater financial and social resources. The ideas of revolutionary anarchists as presented in this chapter would be a threat to the ruling bourgeoisie. As a result the masses would only attain complete emancipation by war or violence; a situation that would be detrimental to the bourgeoisie and the proletariats. However, it is necessary to find a balance between the needs of the bourgeoisie and the proletariats for peace and economic sustainability.
Bakunin, Mikhail A, and K J. Kenafick. Marxism, Freedom, and the State. Whitefish, Mont: Kessinger Pub, 2004.