Karl Marx statue monument

The Karl Marx Statue



cast (2) splendor revolution
gift outskirt knickknack
attract abuse (2) bodes well
slogan wing (3) alternative
voter populist xenophobic
invoke wave (3) human rights
blame block (2) hometown
rival arch (2) pilgrimage
warn relevant demonstrator
tense deck out monument
doubt deck (3) leave no doubt
victim sculptor relationship
left (3) fascism standard (2)
clash pretty (2) concerned
honor authority delegation
accord made up guest of state
prefer cool (3) kowtow (2)
apply response capital (3)
mayor press (2) in terms of
etc objective fundamental
deputy portrait ambassador
accuse challenge take on (2)
pride right (4) appreciate
era part of hidden away
worth souvenir for all it’s worth
seedy milk (2) all kinds of
bronze republic bicentennial
bill (2) assume brilliant (3)
ironic mind (2) do away with
theory recipient right-wing
version distract memorabilia
end up quote (3) commercialism
handle isolated presumably






Karl Marx and all his revolutionary splendor, the father of communism cast in bronze.

It’s a birthday gift from the People’s Republic of China to the people of Trier.

Wu Wieshan, Sculptor: “This is a symbol that bodes well for the friendship between Germany and China.”

Not everybody’s feeling so friendly: the right-wing populist Alternative For Germany protested, though silently this time. The same party that has used xenophobic slogans to attract voters now invoked human rights, giving Karl Marx the blame for all the victims of communism.

Just three blocks over, their arch-rivals, the socialists, communists and Marxists waving the red flag, and warning that the revolution is coming. Again.

Socialist demonstrator: “Of course I think Marx’s system and beliefs are more relevant today than ever.”

And the monument was soon decked out with the flags of communist movements, leaving no doubt that the relationship between Marx and his hometown was still tense.

AFD demonstrator: “There will be a place for pilgrimage for communists; it’s already started here today.”

Socialist Demonstrator: “I don’t want any fascism from the right or the left. And your AFD is pretty close to it.”

The Chinese seemed thoroughly unconcerned by these clashes. The city authorities received the delegation with all the honors accorded to guests of state, and were accused of kowtowing to the visitors.

Some would have preferred a cooler welcome in response to China’s human rights abuses.

Wolfram Leibe, Trier Mayor: “If we apply our German standards and only communicate with states that live up to them in terms of freedom of the press, etc, then we’ll end up fairly isolated in the world.”

A portrait of Marx made up of his quotes. Germany’s return gift might be something of a challenge for its recipients.

Guo Weimin, Chinese Deputy Minister of Information: “To appreciate this, we need people who understand Karl Marx.”

Trier’s mayor is interviewed by Chinese State Television, partly because of his pride in his city’s famous son.

Chinese State Television Journalist: “Is Trier the new Karl Marx Stadt as the East German city of Chemnitz was called during the Communist Era.

Wolfram Leibe, Trier Mayor: “Trier is not the new Karl Marx Stadt. Trier is two-thousand (2,000) years old; it’s Germany’s oldest city — but Karl Marx is part of Trier.”

Trier has long had a Karl Marx Street, even if it is hidden away in a rather seedy area in the outskirts of town.

Trier businesses are milking the Marx Bicentennial for all it’s worth: souvenir shops are now selling all kinds of knickknacks with his image.

Norbert Kathler, Trier Tourism and Marketing Agency: “A brilliant example is our zero-euro bill. Marx said he just assumed we’d do away with money because he himself was not very good at handling it.

So now this zero euro bill is an ironic take on Marx and his theory on money.”

It’s doubtful that Marx ever made much capital out of Das Kapital, unlike the souvenir version and all the memorabilia the Chinese guests seem a little distracted by all the commercialism.

Shi Mingde, Chinese Ambassador: “Our development objective is a fundamental modernization of capital — I mean communism — by 2035.”

Would Marx have minded?

This one made in China, presumably wouldn’t.


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1. A sculpture of Karl Marx was made by a German artist and presented to the city of Berlin. True or false? Why was it erected in Trier?

2. Why did China give the statue as a present to Trier, Germany?

3. Everyone in Germany is pleased with the statue of Marx. Is this right or wrong? Is Marx and Marxism very controversial?

4. Do socialists think Marx and Marxism are obsolete and irrelevant?

5. Were Chinese officials present during the unveiling of the statue? How were they received (welcomed) by Trier officials? Did everyone agree with that?

6. Is the city of Trier only known for being the birthplace of Karl Marx? Does the Karl Marx Street run through the center of Trier?

7. “Trier businesses are milking the Marx Bicentennial for all it’s worth.” What does this mean? Give examples.

8. Marx was a very shrewd businessman and very careful with money. Is this correct or incorrect?


A. Have you studied Marx, Marxism, Fascism, Socialism, Capitalism and Communism in school?

B. What do people where you live think of Karl Marx and Marxism?

C. Have there been prominent Marxists or socialists or communist organizations in your country?

D. What will happen in the future?

E. What should people and governments do?

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