The most comprehensive collection of letters by Rosa Luxemburg ever published in English, this book includes 190 letters written to leading figures in the European and international labor and socialist movements––Leo Jogiches, Karl Kautsky, Clara Zetkin and Karl Liebknecht––who were among her closest friends, lovers and colleagues. Much of this correspondence appears for the first time in English translation; all of it helps to illuminate the inner life of this iconic revolutionary, who was at once an economic and social theorist, a political activist and a lyrical stylist. Her political concerns are revealed alongside her personal struggles within a socialist movement that was often hostile to independently minded women. This collection will provide readers with a newer and deeper appreciation of Luxemburg as a writer and historical figure.
About the Author
Rosa Luxemburg was a leader of the German Social Democratic Federation and jailed for her opposition to WWI. She was assassinated in 1919.
Annelies Laschitza has produced a number of works on the history of the labor movement in Germany, as well as serving as editor of the Collected Letters of Luxemburg and co-editor of Luxemburg's Collected Writings in German. She is the author of the Rosa Luxemburg biography, Full of Life, Despite Everything, and The Liebknechts, Karl and Sophie: Politics and Family. She lives in Germany.
“Intrepid, incorruptible, passionate and gentle. Imagine as you read between the lines of what she wrote, the expression of her eyes. She loved workers and birds. She danced with a limp. Everything about her fascinates and rings true. One of the immortals.”—John Berger
"One cannot read the writings of Rosa Luxemburg, even at this distance, without an acute yet mournful awareness of what Perry Anderson once termed ‘the history of possibility.’"—Christopher Hitchens, Atlantic
"She emerges as one of the most emotionally intelligent socialists in modern history, a radical of luminous dimension whose intellect is informed by sensibility, and whose largeness of spirit places her in the company of the truly impressive."—Vivian Gornick, Nation
"Wonderful ... The self-portrait in these pages is that of a professional revolutionary whose vocation is, if you'll pardon the expression, spiritual. Reading ... this book, I could not help falling in love with you, dear Rosa."—Scott McLemee, Bookforum
"Transports us directly into the private world of a woman who has never lost her inspirational power as an original thinker and courageous activist."—Sheila Rowbotham, Guardian
"The Letters of Rosa Luxemburg come as near as anything to the way this extraordinary woman talked with loved ones and friend ... a wonderfully compelling record, both poignant and timely."—Observer
"Rosa Luxemburg’s letters, with all their exquisite details, read as well as any novel ... Personal or political, they are beautiful, powerful, and succinct."—Idiom
"The Letters of Rosa Luxemburg is a ... kind of memorial, a kind of sliver of one woman’s life bound together in one place ... Rosa Luxemburg comes alive in these pages ... if you love or admire or are just fascinated by her, then you’ve no excuse not to buy this excellent book."—PopMatters