War on war: Debates in the socialist movement on WW1

10:00am Sunday 20 August

About this session

4 August 1914 was a decisive turning point for the socialist movement. The capitulation of the majority of parties of the Second Socialist International to pro-war chauvinism led to a fundamental divide in the movement between reformists and revolutionaries.

This talk will examine the developments in the socialist movement that explain the abandonment of an anti-war standpoint by the leadership of key parties such as the German Social Democratic Party. It will then focus on the debates and arguments amongst revolutionaries such as Lenin, Trotsky, Bukharin and Luxemburg as they attempted to develop a principled anti-war standpoint and lay the basis for a working class movement to end both the war and the capitalist system that breeds wars.

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