The Housing Question - Frederick Engels

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During the 1870s, a major polemical debate unfolded in Germany’s press on the shortage of housing available in major industrial centres. The influx and increase of the productivity created a housing crisis.

On June 26 1872, Engels contributed the first of a series of articles entitled The Housing Question.

Engels’ central point was that the revolutionary class policy of the workers cannot be replaced by a policy of reforms, because “it is not that the solution of the housing question simultaneously solves the social question, but that only by the solution of the social question, that is, by the change of the capitalist mode of production, is the solution of the housing question made possible.


  • nature of the State
  • the eradication of the antithesis between town and country
  • the solution of the agrarian problem
  • forms of the socialist reconstruction of society
  • the tasks of a workers party.

Friedrich Engels, anglicised as Frederick Engels (1820 – 1895), was a German a philosopher, economist, historian, political theorist and socialist. He was also a merchant, journalist and political activist, whose father was an owner of large textile factories in Lancashire, England and Wuppertal, Germany.