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    French socialists before Marx: workers, women and the social question in France

    Pilbeam, Pamela (2000) French socialists before Marx: workers, women and the social question in France. Montreal, Canada: McGill-Queen's University Press. ISBN 9780773521995.

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    Book synopsis: How to put socialism into practice was as fundamental a concern for nineteenth-century socialists as it has been for their successors. In French Socialists before Marx Pamela Pilbeam explores the development of and changes in socialist ideas, revealing how the Fourierists of the 1830s and 1840s changed Fourier's ideas on the family and sexuality, preferring public works programs to model communities. She focuses on the practical contributions of early socialists, including the efforts of working women to run schools, worker associations, and newspapers. French socialism traces its origins to the revolutionary communist Gracchus Babeuf (1760-1797) and for a time during the Second Republic socialists such as Louis Blanc, Etienne Canet, Victor Considérant, Jeanne Deroin, Pauline Roland, Blanqui, and Raspail occupied a prominent place in the attempt to create a reforming social democracy. For Karl Marx, and the dominant academic historians of twentieth-century France who took up his thesis, the early French socialists were worthy only of faint praise or scorn, yet the French parliamentary socialist groups that emerged in the 1880s can be understood only through reference to their predecessors. French Socialists before Marx identifies the major issues for French socialists between 1796 and the 1850s - revolution, religion, education, the status of women, association, and work. Pilbeam demonstrates that the socialists' answer to emerging capitalist competition and social conflict was association, while conservatives, in contrast, defended a liberal economy and united to persecute, prosecute, and deport socialists. French Socialists before Marx fills a significant void in socialist studies, enhancing our understanding of nineteenth-century social thought and strategies. It will be invaluable reading for students of history, politics, gender, French, and European studies.


    Item Type: Book
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Historical Studies
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 15 May 2017 13:48
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:32


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