Rosa Luxemburg in Action: For Revolution and Democracy, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Rosa Luxemburg in Action

For Revolution and Democracy, 1st Edition

By Rosemary H. T. O'Kane


166 pages

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Neither a work concerned only with her Marxist writings nor a personal biography concerned with her private life, this book examines Rosa Luxemburg’s ideas on revolution and democracy and how the two are bound together by her views on the importance of political action. Stretching, historically, from 1863 to the present, this book covers in great detail the history and developments within the German SPD during her time, the 1905 and 1917 Russian Revolutions, the German Revolution, the outbreak of World War I and the imperialism that fuelled it. It then moves on to consider political and historical developments after her death and examines her arguments on revolution and democracy in the light of the post-revolutionary government in Nicaragua: the one violent revolution that sought to establish social democracy (but failed). Also covered are aspects of Rosa Luxemburg’s life, her important writings and actions, the relevant Marxist debates in which she was involved, including, for example Bernstein’s arguments on social democracy through reform and, with Lenin, on revolutionary organization.

A welcomed and timely collection presenting an important examination of the political and social context in which Luxemburg developed her activities and views and a complete understanding of the history of social democracy, the revolutionary times of a century ago and the relevance of their events and ideas for more recent revolutions for democracy in the twenty-first century.

Table of Contents

Selected Contents: 1. Setting The Stage: Electoral Democracy, Imperial Germany and the SPD 2. Preparing The Actor: For International Socialism 3. The Revolutionary Movement: Vote-getting, Party Organization and the General Strike 4. Revolution In Russia, 1905-6: The Living Political School 5. Elections, Imperialism And War: Objective Investigation 6. War, Revolutions And Freedom: From Behind Prison Walls 7. Into The German Revolution: On Through the Weimar Republic 8. After The Russian Revolution: Through Past 1945 9. With The Eagles Flying Onward: To Socialist Democracy

About the Author

Rosemary H.T. O'Kane is Emeritus Professor of Comparative Political Theory at Keele University. Her book The Revolutionary Reign of Terror: The Role of Violence in Political Change (1991) won the CHOICE Outstanding Academic Book for 1993.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in Social and Political Thought

This series explores core issues in political philosophy and social theory. Addressing theoretical subjects of both historical and contemporary relevance, the series has broad appeal across the social sciences. Contributions include new studies of major thinkers, key debates and critical concepts.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Ideologies / Democracy
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Ideologies / General