Marx on Suicide

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Northwestern University Press, 1999 - Psychology - 147 pages
In 1864 - two years before the publication of The Communist Manifesto and 21 years before the publication of Das Kapital - Karl Marx published an essay titled Peuchet on Suicide. The essay was originally presented as a translation of excerpts from the memoirs of Jacques Peuchet (1758-1830), a leading French police administrator, economist and statistician. Plaut and Anderson reveal that Marx's Peuchet on Suicide is not a straightforward translation, but is an edited version in which Marx adds passages of his own, altering the emphasis of the text from a moral and psychological focus to a profoundly social one. Thus, the essay very strongly reflects Marx's own position on this controversial subject. Sociologist Kevin Anderson provides an extensive introduction situating the essay in the context of Marx's work, especially that on gender; Plaut's essay focuses on the psychological aspects of the work, in particular contrasting Marx's thoughts on suicide with those of Freud and Durkheim.
 

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Contents

Marx on Suicide in the Context of
3
Marx on Suicide in the Context of
29
Peuchet on Suicide
43
vom Selbstmord
77
Du suicide et de ses causes
103
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About the author (1999)

Karl Heinrich Marx, one of the fathers of communism, was born on May 5, 1818 in Trier, Germany. He was educated at a variety of German colleges, including the University of Jena. He was an editor of socialist periodicals and a key figure in the Working Man's Association. Marx co-wrote his best-known work, "The Communist Manifesto" (1848), with his friend, Friedrich Engels. Marx's most important work, however, may be "Das Kapital" (1867), an analysis of the economics of capitalism. He died on March 14, 1883 in London, England.

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