chapter  6
Marx and Engels and Racialism
Pages 10

While scholars on the Continent have long been aware of the fact that Karl Marx held anti-semitic views, the same cannot generally be said of their colleagues in England and America. Marx was a Jew and when he was growing up in Trier the Jews, although not persecuted, were treated as second-class citizens and excluded from certain professions. No Jew could hold a commission in the Prussian army or practise at the bar. To continue as a member of the legal profession Marx’s father became a Christian and was baptised by a Lutheran army chaplain. As boy Marx realised that he was different from his fellows. He had been baptised, but he was a Jew by race and suffered from the anti-semitism prevalent in Germany in his day. His reaction to the situation was an extraordinary one. He ranged himself with the anti-semites and denounced his own race in a most violent fashion.1