The Rosa Luxemburg Reader


This volume, edited by Peter Hudis and Kevin B. Anderson, provides an annotated selection from Luxemburg’s major political and economic works – Accumulation of Capital, the Mass Strike, Reform or Revolution, on nationalism, on Lenin, on the Russian Revolution, etc. — as well as her letters.  Several important Luxemburg texts that have been translated into English for the first time by Ashley Passmore and me: a recently discovered 1911 critique of Lenin on democracy; a study of communal social structures in a variety of non-Western and precapitalist societies – among them India, Inca Peru, the Russian village, and Southern Africa — from her unfinished Introduction to Political Economy; an article on slavery; and all of her articles on gender. The editors have contributed an introduction that argues for Luxemburg as a Marxist for our times.



Hudis and Anderson at the International Conference on Rosa Luxemburg, Wuhan University, 2006

Table Of Contents

Introduction by Peter Hudis and Kevin Anderson

Part I: Political Economy, Imperialism, and Non-Western Societies

1. The Historical Conditions of Accumulation, from The Accumulation of Capital
2. The Dissolution of Primitive Communism: From the Ancient Germans and the Incas to India, Russia, and Southern Africa, from Introduction to Political Economy
3. Slavery
4. Martinique

Part II: The Politics of Revolution: from the Critique of Reformism, Theory of the Mass Strike, Writings on Women

5. Social Reform and Revolution
6. The Mass Strike, the Political Party, and Trade Unions
7. Address to the Fifth Congress of the Russian Social-Democratic Labor Party
8. Theory and Practice
9. Writings on Women 1902-14:

a. A Tactical Question
b. Address to the International Socialist Women’s Conference
c. Women’s Suffrage and Class Struggle
d. The Proletarian Woman

Part III: Spontaneity, Organization, and Democracy in the Disputes with Lenin

10. Organizational Questions of Russian Social Democracy
11. Credo: On the State of Russian Social Democracy
12. The Russian Revolution

Part IV: From Opposition to World War to the Actuality of Revolution

13. The Junius Pamphlet: The Crisis in German Social Democracy
14. Speeches and Letters on War and Revolution, 1918-19

a. The Beginning
b. The Socialization of Society
c. What Does the Spartacus League Want?
d. Our Program and the Political Situation
e. Order Reigns in Berlin

Part V: “Like a Clap of Thunder”

15. Selected Correspondence, 1899-1917


Jennifer Benner, H-Net, March 2005

Kanishka Chowdhury, Science & Society, Vol. 71, No. 1, October 2007


“Rosa Luxemburg travels into the twenty-first century like a great messenger bird, spanning continents, scanning history, to remind us that our present is not new but a continuation of a long human conflict changing only in intensity and scope. Her fiery critical intellect and ardent spirit are as vital for this time as in her own. With meticulous care, including valuable endnotes, editors Hudis and Anderson project her in the fullness of her being and thought.”

— Adrienne Rich

“Thanks, Rosa. You go on being our source of fresh water in thirsty times.”

— Eduardo Galeano

“Intrepid, incorruptible, passionate and gentle. Imagine as you read between the lines of what she wrote, the expression of her eyes. She loved workers and birds. She danced with a limp. Everything about her fascinates and rings true. One of the immortals.”

— John Berger

“Rosa Luxemburg’s writings continue to be relevant … The Rosa Luxemburg reader will aptly serve to introduce her perceptive commentaries to a whole new generation of social and political activists.”

— Paul T. Vogel, The Midwest Book Review

  • Indian edition: Kharagpur: Cornerstone Publications, 2005
  • Persian edition: Tehran: Nika Publishing, 2007
  • Turkish edition: Ankara: Dipnot Yayinlari, 2013.

Persian edition: Translated by Hassan Mortazavi, Nika Publishing, Tehran, 2007