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Rosa Luxemburg

Date de naissance: 5. mars 1871
Date de décès: 15. janvier 1919

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Rosa Luxemburg, parfois retranscrit en français Rosa Luxembourg, née le 5 mars 1871 à Zamość en Empire russe et morte le 15 janvier 1919 à Berlin en Allemagne, est une militante socialiste et théoricienne marxiste.

Née sujette polonaise de l'Empire russe, elle prend la nationalité allemande afin de poursuivre en Allemagne son militantisme socialiste. Figure de l'aile gauche de l'Internationale ouvrière, révolutionnaire et partisane de l'internationalisme, elle s'oppose à la Première Guerre mondiale, ce qui lui vaut d'être exclue du SPD. Elle cofonde la Ligue spartakiste, puis le Parti communiste d'Allemagne. Deux semaines après la fondation du Parti communiste, elle meurt assassinée à Berlin le 15 janvier 1919 pendant la révolution allemande, lors de la répression de la révolte spartakiste.

Ses idées ont inspiré des tendances de la gauche communiste et donné naissance, a posteriori, au courant intellectuel connu sous le nom de luxemburgisme. L'héritage de Rosa Luxemburg a cependant été revendiqué, de manière contradictoire, par des mouvances politiques très diverses.

Citations Rosa Luxemburg

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„Freedom only for the members of the government, only for the members of the Party — though they are quite numerous — is no freedom at all. Freedom is always the freedom of dissenters.“

— Rosa Luxemburg
Context: Freedom only for the members of the government, only for the members of the Party — though they are quite numerous — is no freedom at all. Freedom is always the freedom of dissenters. The essence of political freedom depends not on the fanatics of 'justice', but rather on all the invigorating, beneficial, and detergent effects of dissenters. If 'freedom' becomes 'privilege', the workings of political freedom are broken. Die russische Revolution. Eine kritische Würdigung (1920) p. 109 <!-- and in Rosa Luxemburg - Gesammelte Werke Vol. 4, p. 359, Footnote 3, Dietz Verlag Berlin (Ost), 1983 --> This contains probably her most famous statement: Freiheit ist immer Freiheit der Andersdenkenden, translated as "Freedom is always the freedom of dissenters." Variant: Freedom is always and exclusively freedom for the one who thinks differently.

„War unleashes – at the same time as the reactionary forces of the capitalist world – the generating forces of social revolution which ferment in its depths.“

— Rosa Luxemburg
Context: The Russo-Japanese War now gives to all an awareness that even war and peace in Europe – its destiny – isn’t decided between the four walls of the European concert, but outside it, in the gigantic maelstrom of world and colonial politics. And its in this that the real meaning of the current war resides for social-democracy, even if we set aside its immediate effect: the collapse of Russian absolutism. This war brings the gaze of the international proletariat back to the great political and economic connectedness of the world, and violently dissipates in our ranks the particularism, the pettiness of ideas that form in any period of political calm. The war completely rends all the veils which the bourgeois world – this world of economic, political and social fetishism – constantly wraps us in. The war destroys the appearance which leads us to believe in peaceful social evolution; in the omnipotence and the untouchability of bourgeois legality; in national exclusivism; in the stability of political conditions; in the conscious direction of politics by these “statesmen” or parties; in the significance capable of shaking up the world of the squabbles in bourgeois parliaments; in parliamentarism as the so-called center of social existence. War unleashes – at the same time as the reactionary forces of the capitalist world – the generating forces of social revolution which ferment in its depths. [http://www.marxists.org/archive/luxemburg/1904/05/01.htm "In the Storm" in Le Socialiste] as translated by Mitch Abidor (1 - 8 May 1904)

„Socialism in life demands a complete spiritual transformation in the masses degraded by centuries of bourgeois rule.“

— Rosa Luxemburg
Context: Public control is indispensably necessary. Otherwise the exchange of experiences remains only with the closed circle of the officials of the new regime. Corruption becomes inevitable. (Lenin’s words, Bulletin No.29) Socialism in life demands a complete spiritual transformation in the masses degraded by centuries of bourgeois rule. Social instincts in place of egotistical ones, mass initiative in place of inertia, idealism which conquers all suffering, etc., etc. No one knows this better, describes it more penetratingly; repeats it more stubbornly than Lenin. But he is completely mistaken in the means he employs. Decree, dictatorial force of the factory overseer, draconian penalties, rule by terror – all these things are but palliatives. The only way to a rebirth is the school of public life itself, the most unlimited, the broadest democracy and public opinion. It is rule by terror which demoralizes. [http://www.marxists.org/archive/luxemburg/1918/russian-revolution/ch06.htm "The Problem with Dictatorship" in The Russian Revolution] as translated by Bertram Wolfe (1918)

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„Freedom is always and exclusively freedom for the one who thinks differently.“

— Rosa Luxemburg
Context: Freedom only for the supporters of the government, only for the members of one party – however numerous they may be – is no freedom at all. Freedom is always and exclusively freedom for the one who thinks differently. Not because of any fanatical concept of “justice” but because all that is instructive, wholesome and purifying in political freedom depends on this essential characteristic, and its effectiveness vanishes when “freedom” becomes a special privilege. Chapter Six, "The Problem of Dictatorship"

„The modern proletarian class doesn't carry out its struggle according to a plan set out in some book or theory; the modern workers' struggle is a part of history, a part of social progress, and in the middle of history, in the middle of progress, in the middle of the fight, we learn how we must fight...“

— Rosa Luxemburg
Context: The modern proletarian class doesn't carry out its struggle according to a plan set out in some book or theory; the modern workers' struggle is a part of history, a part of social progress, and in the middle of history, in the middle of progress, in the middle of the fight, we learn how we must fight... That's exactly what is laudable about it, that's exactly why this colossal piece of culture, within the modern workers' movement, is epoch-defining: that the great masses of the working people first forge from their own consciousness, from their own belief, and even from their own understanding the weapons of their own liberation. "The Politics of Mass Strikes and Unions"; Collected Works 2 <!-- p. 465 -->

„Bourgeois class domination is undoubtedly an historical necessity, but, so too, the rising of the working class against it.“

— Rosa Luxemburg
Context: Bourgeois class domination is undoubtedly an historical necessity, but, so too, the rising of the working class against it. Capital is an historical necessity, but, so too, its grave digger, the socialist proletariat. [http://www.marxists.org/archive/luxemburg/1915/junius/index.htm The Junius Pamphlet] (1915)

„The Russo-Japanese War now gives to all an awareness that even war and peace in Europe – its destiny – isn’t decided between the four walls of the European concert, but outside it, in the gigantic maelstrom of world and colonial politics.“

— Rosa Luxemburg
Context: The Russo-Japanese War now gives to all an awareness that even war and peace in Europe – its destiny – isn’t decided between the four walls of the European concert, but outside it, in the gigantic maelstrom of world and colonial politics. And its in this that the real meaning of the current war resides for social-democracy, even if we set aside its immediate effect: the collapse of Russian absolutism. This war brings the gaze of the international proletariat back to the great political and economic connectedness of the world, and violently dissipates in our ranks the particularism, the pettiness of ideas that form in any period of political calm. The war completely rends all the veils which the bourgeois world – this world of economic, political and social fetishism – constantly wraps us in. The war destroys the appearance which leads us to believe in peaceful social evolution; in the omnipotence and the untouchability of bourgeois legality; in national exclusivism; in the stability of political conditions; in the conscious direction of politics by these “statesmen” or parties; in the significance capable of shaking up the world of the squabbles in bourgeois parliaments; in parliamentarism as the so-called center of social existence. War unleashes – at the same time as the reactionary forces of the capitalist world – the generating forces of social revolution which ferment in its depths. [http://www.marxists.org/archive/luxemburg/1904/05/01.htm "In the Storm" in Le Socialiste] as translated by Mitch Abidor (1 - 8 May 1904)

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