The Quest for Evolutionary Socialism uses Eduard Bernstein's life and works as the basis for an examination of the interactions between European social democratic politics and socialist political ideas. It is thus a timely response to the need for a new, comprehensive biography of Bernstein, the German 'Father of Marxist Revisionism'. Professor Steger incorporates recent academic developments and addresses current debates on the 'End of Socialism' resulting from the collapse of Marxism-Leninism and the chronic ailments of European social democracy. This study is set within the historical context of the European labour movement and thus Steger interprets Bernstein's 'Evolutionary Socialism' as an ethically motivated quest for liberty, solidarity and distributive justice. Steger stresses that the future of social democracy depends on its ability to heed Bernstein's call for critical self-reflection and to reorientate towards more liberal ideals.Read more
- Only current biography of Eduard Bernstein available in English
- Combines an in-depth history of pre-World War II Germany's labour movement with an exploration of socialist theory and liberal thought
- Includes a discussion of post-1989 events relating to the collapse of Communism
Reviews & endorsements
'His book is well researched, exploits a wide range of contemporary Socialist journals and newspapers, and is solidly based on the private archives of several SPD leaders … This book is a welcome and up-to-date addition to the rather short list of Bernstein biographies.' English Historical Review
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- Date Published: March 2006
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9780521025058
- length: 304 pages
- dimensions: 230 x 151 x 20 mm
- weight: 0.476kg
- contains: 3 b/w illus.
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
Introduction: the nature of Bernstein's quest
Part I. Preparation:
1. The making of a social democrat
2. Persecution and exile
3. The 'Revisionist Controversy'
Part II. Vision:
4. The meaning of socialism
5. Evolutionary socialism as 'organized liberalism': rethinking economics, state and democracy
Part III. Disappointment:
6. Facing the critics
7. The revisionist debate extended
8. The dawn of a new era
9. Bernstein's final battle: confronting socialist instrumentalism
Epilogue: evolutionary socialism at the 'end of socialism'
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