Marxist Theory of Law (2017) -10Marks
Category : Jurisprudence – I
Marxist Theory of Law
Karl marx- 1818-1883- Fredreich Engels- Both of them were the founders of the greatest social and political movement which began in 19th century and flourished in 20th century as a political philosophy in Eastern Europe which is the erstwhile Soviet Union and influenced all the decolonized colonies of the world and is practised in China’s Political Philosophy. Marx’s view of state and law was co-terminus with the understanding of society and social process. Marx’s originality of thought lies in the fact that he synthesized almost entire philosophical thought from Aristotle to Hegel. The sociological understanding of the society led Marx to pronounce that the desired system would be a Communist Society based on rational planning, cooperative production and equality of distribution and most importantly, liberated from all forms of political and bureaucratic hierarchy. Marx condemned and rejected the state and money as Bourgeois concept and the proletariat has a historical mission of emancipating the society as a whole. Law seems to be nothing than a function of economy without any independent existence. His classification of society into various classesThe capitalists The Wage Labourers The land owners This conflict will eventually have to be resolved. The resolution of the conflict will take the shape of a Proletarian revolution. Once this revolution takes place, it will seize the power of the state and transform the means of production in the first instance into the state property. The earlier state of exploitation and representative of class antagonism will be replaced by a state truly representative of society as a whole which means taking possession of means of production in the name of society is at the same time its last independent act of a state. The interference of the state in social relation becomes superfluous in one’s sphere after another and then ceases off itself. The government of persons is replaced by administration of things and directs the process of production. However, the Proletarian revolution in order to reach the stage of Communism shall have to pass through various stages. 1. Establishment of a Proletarian Dictatorship which is essential to convert the capitalist modes of production to the Proletariat mode of production. 2. Stage of Nationalization of the property and all the capital modes of production. 3. Stage of Socialism as the property is in common ownership, the society at large shall be responsible for the production and distribution of goods. As the production of goods in common ownership, the distribution of commodities will have to follow “from each according to his ability to each according to his needs”. Inequalities will remain and hence, the need to distribute the goods is inevitable. The ultimate stage is that of Communism and this state he imagined in his work called “Critique of Gotha Program-1875”. Communist society will have to develop and emerge from capitalist society and in respect will carry with it some marks of capitalist society. Accordingly, the individual producer recedes back from the society what he gave to it by way of labour. If a labourer has worked for fixed hours of a day, he is entitled to the amount of wages for which he has worked. He receives a certificate from society that he has furnished such and such amount of labour and with this certificate he draws from the social stock of means of consumption as much as costs same amount of labour. Higher Communist State- Concept of power and labour gets vanished. After production force increases, then there will be all round development of individual. This we get from “Communist Manifesto”. In higher form of communist state after enslaving subordination of the individual to the division of labour and anti-thesis between mental and physical labour has vanished after labour has become not only a means of life but life’s prime want, after the productive forces have also increased with the all-round development of individual. And all the springs of the co-operative wealth flows more abundantly. The concept of state is a super structure in a capitalist state to organize and uphold class oppression. The bureaucracy and the executive in a state are for the managing common class and struggle waged by the society against each other. Law is not based on will but once the bourgeois state is overthrown by a proletariat, the proletariat state comes into existence. This state is representative of social will of all the classes. The nexus between safeguarding the private property by a capitalist state is replaced by a proletariat state which has nationalized all the private property. However, state and statecraft remains important and integral in the proletarian society. E. Pashukanis- 1891-1937- he tried to remove the gloss on law and Marxism as experimented by the Marxist state. He believed that proletariat law practised in erstwhile Soviet Union needs alternative general concepts to reinforce Marxist theory of law. Power is collective will as the rule of law is realized in the bourgeois society to the extent that this society represents a market.