Marx Engels on Literature and Art

The Situation, April 23 and 24


Source: Marx Engels on Literature and Art, Progress Publishers, 1976, from Karl Marx, “Notes from Newspapers.” Written in German and French, published according to the typewritten copy;
Transcribed: by Andy Blunden.


Reunion of the Paris artists under the chairmanship of citizen Courbet. Fellows do not want the Vend˘me column to be destroyed. (A completely free discussion.) (Public session.) The Commune has now in fact decided to pull down only Bonaparte and put Freedom in his place. (About 3,000 artists in Paris.)

“All big cities throughout the world envy ours; it is the genius of art which presides over the intelligent labour of our workers and has earned Paris its indisputable and unrivalled reputation” (says the lousy Soir itself) [p. 2, c. 4]. It has been declared that women are to be equal to men, with the right both to vote and to be elected (the Artist Club) [p. 3, c. 1].

Leader: the sale of the column is on the order of the day; the Arc de Triomphe is crumbling [p. 5, c. 4].