The social question
As the industrial revolution had led to a high unemployment rate and social disparity society increasingly segregated. Capitalism led to the establishment of social classes, social problems and alienation between the poor and the rich. The state profited from industrialisation: new conjunctions between the agrarian economy and the heavy industry as well as the augmentation of the railway system promoted the domestic commerce and boosted the economy. The poor circumstances of the lower social classes brought about new ideas concerning class distinctions. Popular authors and philosophers began publishing their views and thus criticising the capitalistic system.
The social adversity and the misery of those who had to live on the brink of the subsistence minimum were called pauperismPauperism is a term used to describe poverty . The living conditions were disastrous, groceries generally rare and monthly wages so low that the whole family was included in home-work. Peasants had to buy their liberty from their landlords which most could not afford and in consequence worked for their landlords as labourers. This even increased the division of all social classes.
Marxism vs. capitalism
The socialist philosophers Friedrich EngelsFriedrich Engels was a German social scientist and co-authored The Communist Manifesto with Karl Marx and Karl MarxKarl Marx was a German philosopher and revolutionary socialist. His most notable books were The Communist Manifesto (1848) and Das Kapital (1867–1894) held industrialisation liable for mass poverty. Hence they developed a new concept of society and economy as an alternative to capitalism, called Marxism that aimed to overcome class distinctions. According to that a worker’s wages should be determined according to the worker’s accomplishments to prohibit exploitation. Marx and Engels criticised capitalists for treating the working class similar to slaves. Furthermore they explained that private property caused people’s dependency on it, thus leading to social injustice. Essentially they advocated the opinion that no person should reign over another to solve problems connected to poverty.