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‘The american worker’ (February 1906)

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Chapter Summary

Karl Kautsky's series of articles on the Russian and American workers was originally written as a reply to the bourgeois sociologist Werner Sombart's famous study Why Is There No Socialism in the United States? Abram Leon also dedicated a whole section of his work on the Jewish question to a refutation of Sombart's thesis, advanced in his book The Jews and Modern Capitalism, to the effect that the Jews were 'the founders of modern capitalism'. Sombart's works, because of their wealth of historical data and the insights he gained from his acquaintance with Marx's work, always remained a subject of deep interest for Marxist theoreticians. Leon Trotsky mentions Kautsky's 'The American Worker' in the 1922 introduction to his book 1905, describing it as one of the works by Kautsky that constituted 'a merciless rejection of Menshevism and a complete theoretical vindication of the subsequent political tactics of the Bolsheviks'.

Keywords: 1905 Russian Revolution; Abram Leon; Kautsky's 'The American Worker'; Leon Trotsky; Marxist theoretician; The Jews and Modern Capitalism; Werner Sombart



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