Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels coined the word in the 1840s and used it to refer to the unthinking lower strata of society exploited by reactionary and counter-revolutionary forces, particularly in the context of the revolutions of 1848. They dismissed the revolutionary potential of the Lumpenproletariat and contrasted it with the proletariat.
the most spontaneous and the most radically revolutionary forces of a colonized people
1 Elsewhere in the garden
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