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German Social Democracy, 1905–1917

German Social Democracy, 1905–1917

The Development of the Great Schism

Carl E. Schorske

ISBN 9780674351257

Publication date: 01/01/1983

No political parties of present-day Germany are separated by a wider gulf than the two parties of labor, one democratic and reformist, the other totalitarian and socialist-revolutionary. Social Democrats and Communists today face each other as bitter political enemies across the front lines of the Cold War; yet they share a common origin in the Social Democratic Party of Imperial Germany. How did they come to go separate ways? By what process did the old party break apart? How did the prewar party prepare the ground for the dissolution of the labor movement in World War I, and for the subsequent extension of Leninism into Germany? To answer these questions is the purpose of Carl Schorske’s study.


  • A masterful study! Professor Schorske’s book combines the methodological thoroughness of a scholarly monograph with the breadth of political insight needed to investigate and explain Social Democratic history.

    —Journal of Central European Affairs


  • Carl E. Schorske was Professor of History, Princeton University.

Book Details

  • 374 pages
  • 5-1/4 x 8-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press