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In this quote, Karl Marx is discussing the relationship between writing and money. He acknowledges that writers need to earn income through their work in order to support themselves financially and have the means to continue writing.
However, he argues that writers should not approach their craft with the sole aim of maximizing monetary profits. Rather, Marx suggests the purpose of writing should be the creative expression itself and any money earned should be a byproduct, not the primary goal or motivation.
In essence, the quote distinguishes between writing to make a living versus writing solely for commercial gain. Marx believes artistic integrity is best served when financial concerns do not dominate or dictate the content, style or direction of the writing.