The present volume consists of a translation of some of Karl Marx's principal writings during the six years 1844-1850.
in philosophy. We are philosophical contemporaries of the present without being its historical contemporaries. German philosophy is the ideal prolongation of German history. If, therefore, we criticize the oeuvres posthumes of our ideal history, philosophy, instead of the oeuvres incomplètes of our real history, our criticism occupies a position among the questions of which the present says: that is the question. That which represents the decaying elements of practical life among the progressive nations with modern State conditions first of all becomes critical decay in the philosophical reflexion of these conditions in Germany, where the conditions themselves do not yet exist.
German juridical and political philosophy is the sole element of German history which stands al pari with the official modern present.
The German people must therefore strike this their dream history against their existing conditions, and subject to criticism not only these co