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Current Issue: Issue 02, 2018
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Sociological Studies is compiled by the Institute of Sociology, the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. The Journal is devoted to the study of sociology and has become one of the leading professional academic journals in social science.
Sociological Studies,2018,Vol 33,No. 02
Starting from the misunderstanding of Marx by Tönnies, this paper examined the moral meaning of communism from the perspective of community theories based on German historicism. The starting point of Marx’s communist doctrine has a very strong affinity with the tradition of German community theories—to protect the integrity of personality—but it is quite different from the latter’s approach. Marx’s solution transcends the latter in terms of moral problems. German community theorists criticize the political and economic institutional design of the Enlightenment rationalism and try to rebuild the community spirit through cultural approaches. They want to sacrifice certain “equality” at the level of political economy to open up space for the “conscientious freedom” with a kind of moral “hierarchy,” in order to preserve the integrity of the personality. This culturally oriented humanitarianism does not give a proper place for the political and economic structure, thus failing to free itself from the cycle of “restoring the community in a society shaped by social forces.” Marx attempts to fundamentally overthrow the political and economic structure that has led to this cycle. The goal is to completely liberate one’ s personality. Marx and Engels hold that it is necessary to open up a new space for moral freedom on the basis of true political and economic equality in order to eliminate the hierarchical differences among human beings and to safeguard the integrity of personality of the human beings, thus transcending German community theories and elevating community to a new level.