In vivid detail, Francis Wheen tells the story of Das Kapital
and Karl Marx’s twenty-year struggle to complete his unfinished masterpiece. Born in a tworoom flat in London
amid political squabbles and personal tragedy, the first volume of Das Kapital
was published in 1867, to muted praise. But after Marx’s death, the book went on to influence thinkers, writers, and revolutionaries, from George Bernard Shaw to V. I. Lenin, changing the direction of twentiethcentury history.
Wheen’s captivating, accessible book shows that, far from being a dry economic treatise, Das Kapital
is like a vast Gothic novel whose heroes are enslaved by the monster they created: capitalism. Furthermore, Wheen argues, as long as capitalism endures, Das Kapital
demands to be read and understood.