Although neither was a historian in a conventional sense, Marx and Engels’s historical writings constitute a substantial opus.2 Moreover, their work as a whole is suffused with historical analysis. For instance, discussions of the transition from feudalism to capitalism reappeared time and again in their popular works (German Ideology, Communist Manifesto, Socialism: Scientific and Utopian). For them the transition was both an index of historical development of their day and a pointer to subsequent world-historical transitions. Even Capital, which is usually conceived of as a work of dense political economy, periodically turns to historical circumstances to bring its analysis of capitalism to life.
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