Marxism and the Struggle for Women's Emancipation
“To alter the position of woman at the root is possible only if all the conditions of social, family, and domestic existence are altered.”
—Leon Trotsky in Women and the Family
Marxism has always been at the forefront of the struggle for women’s emancipation. March 8 (International Women’s Day) is a red letter day for us as it symbolizes the struggle of working-class women against capitalism, oppression, and discrimination throughout the world. This booklet contains a collection of articles by the International Marxist Tendency as well as a reminiscence by the outstanding German revolutionary Clara Zetkin. In them, the authors outline the Marxist position on how we can eliminate inequality between men and women once and for all—through the socialist revolution. These include articles on intersectionality, the history of Marxism and the emancipation of women, and a remarkable conversation between Zetkin and V.I. Lenin.
The root cause of all oppression, whether of women, racial, ethnic, or national minorities, and all other oppressed groups, is ultimately to be found in the enslavement and alienation rooted in the capitalist system. Only when this is abolished, and the conditions of life of the whole of society are transformed, will the family and the state—those twin remnants of barbarity—finally cease to exist. When the old primitive, inhuman psychology born of misery finally recedes into the past, the material conditions will have been established for a new social order in which the last vestiges of external compulsion and coercion will have disappeared and men and women will finally be able to relate to each other as free human beings.
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