MARXISM has a two-fold bearing on science. In the first place Marxists study science among other human activities. They show how the scientific activities of any society depend on its changing needs, and so in the long run on its productive methods, and how science changes the productive methods, and therefore the whole society. This analysis is needed for any scientific approach to history, and even non-Marxists are now accepting parts of it.
But secondly Marx and Engels were not content to analyse the changes in society. In dialectics they saw the science of the general laws of change, not only in society and in human thought, but in the external world which is mirrored by human thought. That is to say it can be applied to problems of "pure" science as well as to the social relations of science.
Scientists are becoming familiar with the application of Marxist ideas to the place of science in society. Some accept it in whole or in part, others fight against it vigorously, and say that they are pursuing pure knowledge for its own sake. But many of them are unaware that Marxism has any bearing on scientific problems considered out of their relation to society, for example to the problems of tautomerism in chemistry or individuality in biology. And certain Marxists are inclined to regard the study of such scientific and philosophical problems as unimportant. Yet they have before them the example of Lenin.
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