The German Revolution, 1917-1923

A magisterial, definitive account of the upheavals in Germany in the wake of the Russian Revolution. Broue meticulously reconstructs six decisive years, 1917–23, of social struggles in Germany, the defeat of which had profound consequences for the world.

Part of the Historical Materialism Book Series.

About the author

Pierre Broué (1926–2005) was for many years professor of contemporary history at the Institut d'études politiques in Grenoble. A world renowned specialist of the communist and international workers' movements, he is the founder of the Cahiers Léon Trotsky, editor of Leon Trotsky's writings in French, and the author of many books, including Revolution and the Civil War in Spain


“Germany from 1917 to 1923 was the scene of the greatest working class revolutionary upsurge ever in an advanced capitalist country. With the old order disintegrating under the hammer blows of military defeat and economic collapse, parties and groupuscules, trade unions and factory committees, battled employers, the government, and paramilitaries to inaugurate a new proletarian order.

“In his monumental classic, Pierre Broué follows the revolutionary process from the standpoint of the revolutionaries and their multiple organizations, strewn across Europe and Russia, as they struggled to impose conceptual order on the unprecedented cataclysms unfolding before them, to frame strategies and tactics, and to win over the mass movements, in intense competition with their communist, socialist, and anarchist rivals.

“Broué enables us to feel that we are actually living through these epoch-making events, not just by virtue of his brilliant narrative, but, even more so, through his ongoing analysis and critique of the revolutionaries' intra-party debates, sectarian maneuvers, and all too often catastrophic decisions. As an introduction to revolutionary theory and practice, for then and for now, this book is in a class by itself.”
-- Robert Brenner, Professor and Director, UCLA Center for Social Theory and Comparative History