Cover: Daniel DeLeon: The Odyssey of an American Marxist, from Harvard University PressCover: Daniel DeLeon in E-DITION

Daniel DeLeon

The Odyssey of an American Marxist

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This is the first authoritative biography of Daniel DeLeon, an enigmatic and compelling figure in the history of American Marxism. He was the leader of the Socialist Labor Party (for years the only active socialist party in America) and he was active in the Knights of Labor and the Industrial Workers of the World. He fought the “pure and simple” trade unionism of Samuel Gompers and founded the Socialist Trade and Labor Alliance as an alternative. He was, L. Glenn Seretan writes, “probably the most gifted and original Marxist intellectual to focus his attention on the problems attending revolution in the advanced capitalist civilization of the United States.”

Seretan sees Deleon’s career centered in several contradictions. He was an avid foe of the Catholic Church, but he pretended to be a Venezuelan Catholic aristocrat descended from Ponce de Leon. He found a theme for his life, Seretan argues, in the legend of the Wandering Jew, and resolved the problem of his social identity by throwing himself into the work of socialism.

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Jacket: The Strategy of Conflict, by Thomas C. Schelling, from Harvard University Press

Schelling the Trailblazer

Books influence us in untold ways, and the ones that influence us the most are often read in childhood. Harvard University Press Senior Editor Julia Kirby is reminded of this on the anniversary of the birth of one of this country’s most celebrated economists. This month would have brought Thomas Schelling’s one-hundredth birthday—and he got closer to seeing it than many mortals. The Nobel laureate economist died just five years ago, after a brilliant career as both a scholar and an advisor to US foreign policy strategists. What better day to dip into his classic work