A cartoon book about Marx? Are you sure it's Karl, not Groucho? How can you summarize the work of Karl Marx in cartoons? It took Rius to do it. He's put it all in: the origins of Marxist philosophy, history, economics; of capital, labor, the class struggle, socialism. And there's a biography of "Charlie" Marx besides.
Like the companion volumes in the series, Marx for Beginners is accurate, understandable, and very, very funny.
|Publisher:||Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.50(d)|
About the Author
RIUS is the pseudonym of Eduardo del Rio, the internationally acclaimed Mexican caricaturist and editorial cartoonist whose innovative work established a new field in comic strips: the political and documentary cartoon-book. He was chosen Best Editorial Cartoonist in Mexico in 1959, and in 1968 he received the Grand Prize of the International Salon of Caricature in Montreal. He currently lives and works in Cuernavaca, Mexico.
What People are Saying About This
"A superb little book in a most improbable format....I recommend it unreservedly for anyone who wants the rudiments of Marx from an engaging mentor....Rius on Marx is magnificent. He shows that pictures can amplify ideas, and that simplicity need not forgo subtlety."
New York Times Book Review
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This was a very good read, though confusing, at times, due to it's somewhat comic-book style. It is CLEARLY written from a pro-Marx perspective. On more than one occasion it made some very clear attacks on religion in general, but especially Christianity. If you are searching for a "new philosophy," I would not recommend this, due to it's clear bias. If you are fairly confident, in your ability to objectively analyze information, and discern fact from bias, then I would recommend this. It does seem to give a fairly extensive view of the ideologies behind Marxism, without getting bogged down in the mundane mechanics of it. Ironically, after reading this, I am even more convinced that Marxism cannot work, because it requires you to start with some assumptions about mankind, which I can't agree with, nor do I see any evidence for. All in all, a good read, with some good information.
I bought "Marx for Beginners", a cartoon introduction to Marx written by Mexican political cartoonist Eduardo del Rio ("Rius"), not so much because I needed an introduction to Marxism but to see how the theory can be summarized as pithily and shortly as possible. And indeed, Del Rio has done an admirable job on this. The reader is guided through all aspects of Marx' work as well as biography, even including an extraordinarily rapid overview of the history of philosophy and of the early socialists. Of the economic theories of Marx only the basics are explained, but nevertheless sufficient to get the point of what Marx tried to show in "Capital", if not how he proved it. As far as the political side goes, Del Rio usefully emphasizes the limitations of social-democracy and its inability to get beyond the exploitation of capitalism, as well as many quotations from Marx showing how he opposed this tendency. As criticisms, one could remark that Engels gets short shrift in this book - admittedly it is titled "Marx for beginners", but one wonders why not "Marx & Engels for beginners"? Also, Del Rio seems to take the connection between Marx and Lenin as a natural progression for granted, even including in the (otherwise very handy) vocabulary of terms under Marxism-Leninism: "theory of the proletarian liberation movement". Hardly something uncontested. The drawings are clear and funny, if a bit on the juvenile side compared to the content that he is trying to convey. This might have a good effect on younger people reading it though, making it possibly useful as a high school text on Marx, if there ever is a capitalist country brave enough to allow it. Due to the requirements of Del Rio's purpose, some of the summaries of earlier thinkers are so simple as to be simplistic, but this can't be helped. Overall, a practical and well-done introduction to Marx for the complete novice.
A highly compressed overview of the development of Marx's views, the book is truly just for beginners. It's supposed to be a "documentary comic book" -- but I don't think that it makes use of the comics medium as effectively as it could: It relies less on narrative and more on an illustrated-history-book approach. Nevertheless, it is very good as a brief and quick introduction for those interested in getting a sense of Marx's ideas to study them further. It is quite useful for the introduction to the social, historical and philosophical conditions of and leading up to Marx's time, that makes up in breadth what it lacks in depth. Also very useful is the extensive glossary in the back.
I had to read this book for my Russian studies class, and I have to admit I enjoyed reading about history in this cartoon format. It makes Marxism easier to understand. However, it discusses the ideology and its background in details. Recommended for anyone who does studies in history because Marxism is one of the most important topics in twentieth century history (not only in Russia).