Aksjologiczna treść pojęcia sprawiedliwości w poglądach Karola Marksa

Emilia Żyro


The article presents an attempt to reconstruct the axiological contents of Marx’s –concept of justice In the broadest terms, the axiological content of Marx’s concept of justice consists, in the author’s opinion, in the eternal conviction of man that it is just to render unto man what is rightfully due to him, while to deprive man of his due rights is a wrong. Accordingly, every man, by reason of his work or merits, rightly deserves the use and enjoyment of the material goods he has produced, or of the good reputation he has won, etc. That formulation, however, does not exhaust the full sense of Marx’s idea of ‚justice’. Man in his capacity as a human being rightfully deserves over and above all that, a chance to draw on the full stock of human achievement, in order to develop and satisfy his manifold needs, inclinations and talents.

Thus, the author contends, we are confronted with two different concepts of justice in Marx. In a narrower sense, he sees justice as the rendering unto man of all that is rightfully due to him on account of his various contributions to the common weal; and in a broader sense, as the granting to each individual of all due rights irrespective of any contribution on his part.

The article discusses the problem of the implementing of ‚justice’ according to Marx; also, of the relativization of Marx’s postulates of justice to a definite period constituting a definite stage in the evolution of society, as well as Marx’s views on justice in the distributive and retributive sense.

Marx does not approve ‚justice’ being reduced to a mere distributing of material goods, although he is also far from denying validity to the postulate of justice according to the distributive principle, ‚to each according to his work’. But he is positively against the private-property-begotten conception of justice in the retributive sense. He understands, however, that in societies ridden by antagonisms and conflicts, a complete elimination of retribution is impossible.

The concluding part of the article brings an examination of the question of the mutual relation of ‚justice’ and ‚morality’ in the ethical views of Marx.