The Crisis of German Social Democracy
Rosa Luxemburg was the most eloquent voice of the left wing of German Social Democracy and a constant advocate of radical action. She spent much of the war in jail, where she wrote and then smuggled out this pamphlet. Published under the name “Junius”, a pseudonym used by an influential English pamphleteer in the 18th century, but perhaps also a reference to Lucius Junius Brutus, a legendary republican hero of ancient Rome, the pamphlet became the guiding statement for the International Group, which became the Spartacus League and ultimately the Communist Party of Germany (January 1, 1919). Luxemburg was instrumental in these developments and, along with Karl Liebknecht (1871-1919), led the Spartacists until their assasination by the German government on January 15, 1919.
See also Lenin's comments on the Junius pamphlet.
Written: February–April 1915 (while in prison).
First Published: In Zurich, February 1916, and illegally distributed in Germany.
Source: Politische Schriften, pp.229-43, pp.357-72.
Translated: (from German) by Dave Hollis.
Transcription/Markup: Dave Hollis, Brian Baggins, Einde O’Callaghan.
Copyleft: Luxemburg Internet Archive (marxists.org) 1996, 1999, 2003.
Marxist.com version: Proofread/edited November 2019.