In this podcast, Ben Curry explains the Marxist understanding of the role played by individuals in history – and the role that we must play today.
History is commonly taught as little more than the deeds of great men, who alone possess the ability to make history. Marxism rejects this view, and instead sees the development of society and great events as subject to objective processes, which often act behind the backs of the people taking part in them.
But does this mean that the actions, ideas, and characteristics of individuals play no role at all? And what does this mean for revolutionaries living and fighting today?
Marxism has sometimes been wrongly accused of fatalism: the belief that everything that happens is predetermined and unavoidable. But this raises an important question of how the powerful objective forces of history interact with the conscious acts of individuals.