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The Question of Nationalities and Social Democracy

2000
Author:

Otto Bauer
Ephraim J. Nimni, editor
Translated by Joseph O’Donnell
Foreword by Heinz Fischer

The Question of Nationalities and Social Democracy

The first complete English translation of a classic work on nationalism.

Until now, The Question of Nationalities and Social Democracy was the only remaining work of classical Marxism not fully translated into English. First published in German in 1907, this seminal text has been cited in countless discussions of nationalism, from the writings of Lenin to Benedict Anderson’s Imagined Communities.

Vital to out understanding of both Marxist thought and the theory of nationalism. An historically significant analysis of nations and nationalism. This book includes a number of provocative ideas for addressing contemporary ‘questions of nationalities’.

Nations and Nationalism

Until now, The Question of Nationalities and Social Democracy was the only remaining work of classical Marxism not fully translated into English. First published in German in 1907, this seminal text has been cited in countless discussions of nationalism, from the writings of Lenin to Benedict Anderson’s Imagined Communities.

The issues Bauer addressed almost a century ago still challenge current debates on diversity and minority rights. In this remarkably prophetic text, Bauer foreshadowed current ethnic conflicts in the Balkans and in the former Soviet Union and advocated an early concept of multiculturalism. Attempting to reconcile Marxism with nationalism, Bauer called for a system of self-determination for ethnic communities in which extensive autonomy would be granted within a confederal, multicultural state—in Bauer’s words, a "United States of Europe," with remarkable similarities to the contemporary European Union.

The Question of Nationalities and Social Democracy

A national hero in Austria, Otto Bauer (1881-1938) was a distinguished statesman and the chief theoretician of the Austrian Social Democratic party.

Ephraim J. Nimni is professor of political science at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia.

Joseph O’Donnell is a freelance translator living in Berlin.

Heinz Fischer is speaker of the Austrian Parliament and president of the National Council.

The Question of Nationalities and Social Democracy

Vital to out understanding of both Marxist thought and the theory of nationalism. An historically significant analysis of nations and nationalism. This book includes a number of provocative ideas for addressing contemporary ‘questions of nationalities’.

Nations and Nationalism

Important and impressive.

Millennium

Otto Bauer’s Marxist classic is a very sophisticated analysis of the nation from a historical materialist perspective. A must read for historians, political scientists, social theorists, students, and general readers. Not only is it indispensable for any academic library, but it should be required reading in the courses on nationalism taught today.

Labour/LeTravail

The Question of Nationalities and Social Democracy

Contents

Foreword

Heinz Fischer
Translator's Note

Joseph O'Donnell
Introduction for the English-Reading Audience

EphraimJ. Nimni
Acknowledgments
EphraimJ. Nimni

THE QUESTION OF NATIONALITIES AND SOCIAL DEMOCRACY

Preface to the First Edition
Preface to the Second Edition

1. The Nation The National Character—The Nation as Community of Nature—Community of Nature and Community of Culture—The Germanic National Community of Culture in the Era of Clan Communism— The Cultural Community of the Knights in the Age of Feudalism—Commodity Production and the Beginnings of the Bourgeois Community of Culture—The Cultural Community of the Educated Classes in the Early Capitalist Era—Modern Capitalism and the National Community of Culture—The Realization of the National Community of Culture through Socialism—The Concept of the Nation—National Consciousness and National Sentiment—Critique of National Values—National Politics
2. The Nation-State The Modern State and the Nation—The Principle of Nationality
3. The Multinational State Austria as a German State—The Awakening of the Nonhistorical Nations—Modern Capitalism and National Hatred—The State and the National Struggles—The Working Class and the National Struggles
4. National Autonomy The Territorial Principle—The Personality Principle—National Autonomy for the Jews?
5. The Developmental Tendencies of the National Struggles in Austria The Internal Development of Austria toward National Autonomy— Austria and Hungary
6. The Transformation of the Principle of Nationality National Autonomy and the Principle of Nationality—The Roots of Capitalist Expansionism—The Working Class and Capitalist Expansionism—Imperialism and the Principle of Nationality—Socialism and the Principle of Nationality
7. The Program and Tactics of Austrian Social Democracy The Nationalities Program of the Social Democratic Workers' Party— The Political Organization—The National Question in the Trade Unions—The Tactics of Social Democracy

Notes
Index