Monday, January 2, 2012

Love And Capital - Best Book of 2011

The traditions of all the dead generations weighs like a nightmare on the brain of the living.
Karl Marx, MECW, Volume 11, 103-104, 106

The Oracle of Ottawa reads at least a hundred books a year. No Tom Clancy, no John Grisham. Only non-fiction works of science, economics, history and philosophy. He is also very careful of the text he chooses. Only complete unabridged texts will do. He has even been known to do extensive research on the text before he acquires it. The Oracle of Ottawa is on a mission from God. The search for enlightenment is not to be taken lightly.

Karl Marx and daughter Jenny Marx

It is seldom that I come across a real page turner in the non-fiction genre. And even rarer is one that is written by a woman. The year past has been very good to the Oracle of Ottawa indeed. I first saw Love and Capital by Mary Gabriel in a local Chapters retail store. As all my dear readers know the Oracle of Ottawa has developed in to real little Marxian scholar in the last few years. And anything new about Karl Marx is looked into deeply, immediately. Open Love and Capital anywhere and start to read, and it is riveting. The style is like oil, smooth and viscous. And it flows for ever. Bet you can't read just one page!

I have read a few Karl Marx biographies and I have a few more standing by to be read. But I am sure that Mary Gabriel's book will become the modern standard. It is based on the familial level, which I do not believe has ever been attempted before. And it contains some real new revelations which I will not give away here. Having access to the secret Stalin files was surely a help. And it was put to very good use by the author.

There were two theories that I had developed  from my reading of the text of various works of Marx. First the Communist Manifesto was written in bars by a couple of wild young lads with the world by the tail, with unlimited tomorrows. I was right on that one partly. The final editing of the work was done at the kitchen table with the wife Jenny. I did not know that. The second theory that I have developed was the that the turning point of the "young" Marx into the "raging" Marx occurred with the death of his son Edgar on April 6, 1855. This event more than any other in Karl Marx's life started the gestation of Das Kapital. And only a woman could have caught all the nuances and the importance as well as it is related in Love and Capital. Mary Gabriel gave this book years of her life and I am predicting it will surely be one that will live forever.

Another thing I noticed from the text; Jenny Marx, the daughter always is wearing a crucifix! And even when photographed with her "atheist" father Karl Marx! Perhaps another myth bites the dust? And another shocker, Karl Marx and his family celebrated Christmas and New Years just like you and I. That fact wasn't in my high school history book....

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