Karl Marx

Karl MarxFirst published Tue Aug 26, 2003; substantive revision Mon Dec 21, 2020Karl Marx (1818–1883) is often treated as a revolutionary, an activist rather than a philosopher, whose works inspired the foundation of many communist regimes in the twentieth century. It is certainly hard to find many thinkers who can be said to have had […]

Henry Mayers Hyndman

Hyndman, Henry Mayers (1842–1921). Socialist. Born into riches—the West Indian fortune of his grandfather— Hyndman was converted to Marxism by reading Das Kapital on board an Atlantic steamer on a business trip. In 1881 he published a kind of précis of it under the title England for All, which he distributed to delegates at the […]

James Connolly

James Connolly James Connolly was a leading figure in recent Irish history. James Connolly played a leading part in the Easter Uprising of 1916 and his execution outraged many in Ireland. James Connolly was born in June 1868. For a man so linked to Irish history, Connolly was born in Edinburgh, Scotland. The area he […]

Jean-Paul Sartre

Jean-Paul SartreFirst published Thu Apr 22, 2004; substantive revision Mon Dec 5, 2011Sartre (1905–1980) is arguably the best known philosopher of the twentieth century. His indefatigable pursuit of philosophical reflection, literary creativity and, in the second half of his life, active political commitment gained him worldwide renown, if not admiration. He is commonly considered the […]

Existentialism

ExistentialismFirst published Mon Aug 23, 2004; substantive revision Tue Jun 9, 2020Like “rationalism” and “empiricism,” “existentialism” is a term that belongs to intellectual history. Its definition is thus to some extent one of historical convenience. The term was explicitly adopted as a self-description by Jean-Paul Sartre, and through the wide dissemination of the postwar literary […]