A concept central to the Marxian notion of historical progress; the motive force behind change. In each stage of history, society polarizes into two major antagonistic classes which struggle for supremacy. In the capitalist stage, for example, the conflict revolves around the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. Not a popular concept in China today after the horrors of the Cultural Revolution.
the competitive conflict between social classes within a state. Such struggles exist in most states. Sometimes the struggle escalates in violence and becomes a revolt, if unsuccessful, or a revolution, if successful.
In the modern period, conflict between the bourgeoisie (capitalist oppressor) and the proletariat (working oppressed).
conflict between social or economic classes (especially between the capitalist and proletariat classes)
the engine of history; a basic conflict of interests and hostility between various economic groups where the groups are defined by the members' relationship to the means of production. Marx, Manifesto
Generally, the tension between the "haves" and the "have nots". In Marxist theory, class struggle will always intensify as capitalism progresses and workers are ever more exploited.
Class struggle is class conflict looked at from any kind of socialist perspective. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, leading ideologicians of communism, wrote "The [written]The bracketed word reflects the footnote that Engels added later, noting that pre-class societies existed. history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggle"Communist Manifesto, 1848.