Marx, Freud and Judaism Analytical Essay by Nicky

Marx, Freud and Judaism
A look at how Karl Marx and Sigmund Freud viewed their Jewish roots.
# 145043 | 1,632 words | 2 sources | APA | 2010 | US

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This paper examines the complex relationships of Karl Marx and Sigmund Freud with their Jewish heritage. Both men, two of the greatest thinkers of the 19th century, struggled with their connection to their religion, yet on different levels and with different issues. Despite this, the paper cites how the some of the men's outlooks were influenced by Judaism. The paper shows how Marx was antagonistic toward Jewish rights in Germany because he felt all religion should be abolished. Marx's other outlooks on the Jewish situation in Germany are also examined. Unlike Marx, Freud was not an idealist or politically-oriented in his psychoanalytic philosophy. He saw religion as based on superstition, although unlike Marx, Freud never renounced his Judaism. The paper concludes that the similarity between Marx and Freud is that both thinkers see religion as a solution to human powerlessness, either powerlessness against class-based, historical forces, or the powerlessness that is inherent to the human condition regardless of class.

From the Paper:

"Marx saw all states based in religion as inherently exclusive, and therefore rotten to the core: "In wanting to be emancipated from the Christian state, the Jew is demanding that the Christian state should give up its religious prejudice. Does he, the Jew, give up his religious prejudice? Has he, then, the right to demand that someone else should renounce his religion?" Marx ironically sneers that it is 'necessary' for a Christian to be prejudiced against Jewish people, as a condition of Christianity. In other words, all religions, Marx believed, were inherently alienating and exclusionary towards other groups, and to attempt to be inclusive is a denial of religion. The solution to the oppression of the Jews, wrote Marx, was not liberation, but a casting-off of the mass delusion of religion in general by all of society, both Jews and gentiles."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Braungardt, Jurgen. (2001). Freud on religion. Retrieved December 3, 2008
  • Marx, Karl. (1844). On the Jewish question. Retrieved December 3, 2008

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

Marx, Freud and Judaism (2010, October 24) Retrieved February 06, 2023, from

MLA Format

"Marx, Freud and Judaism" 24 October 2010. Web. 06 February. 2023. <>