Chapter

Egalitarian Millennialism

Richard Landes

in Heaven on Earth

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780199753598
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199897445 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199753598.003.0010
Egalitarian Millennialism

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Beginning with a discussion of Babeuf's Communist variant on the (failed) French Revolution, the chapter analyzes Marx as a “rooster” (a secular Joachite) whose prophecies of a world revolution in 1848 proved wrong (compared with Meyerbeer's response), but who spent the rest of his life trying to explain—as roosters so often do—how he was right about the scenario, but wrong about the timing. The chapter addresses the issue of Marx's denial of any millennial component to his thinking, his adoption of the politique du pire, and the broader problem of “secular millennialism,” including the problem of “envy” in the appeal of Communist promises.

Keywords: Marx; Babeuf; Meyerbeer; utopianism; Joachim of Fiore; Revolutions of 1848; Communist Manifesto; historical dialectic; envy; Münster

Chapter.  15411 words. 

Subjects: East Asian Religions

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