Ferdinand Bebel was a German social democrat and one of the founders
of the Social Democratic Party of Germany.
He was born on February 22, 1840 in Deutz, near Cologne; he founded
the Sächsische Volkspartei ("Saxon People's Party")
in 1867 together with Wilhelm Liebknecht, and the SDAP (Sozialdemokratische
Arbeiterpartei, Social Democratic Workers' Party of Germany) in
1869, which merged with the ADAV (Allgemeiner Deutscher Arbeiterverein,
"General German Workers' Association") in 1875 to form
the SAPD (Sozialistische Arbeiterpartei Deutschlands, "Socialist
Workers' Party of Germany"), which renamed itself SPD in 1890.
1872, Bebel was convicted in a political lawsuit, the so-called
Leipziger Hochverratsprozess, and sentenced to two years in Festungshaft
("imprisonment in a fortress", a variant of a jail sentence
that was not considered dishonouring), which he spent at the famous
Königstein Fortress. Later in his life, he acted as chairman
of the SPD and member of the Reichstag. Bebel's book, Women and
Socialism was translated into English by Daniel DeLeon of the
Socialist Labor Party of America as Woman under Socialism. It
figured prominently in the Connolly-DeLeon controversy after James
Connolly, then a member of the SLP, denounced it as "a lewd
book" subversive of traditional values.
living in Berlin-Schöneberg for many years, where a commemorative
plaque commemorates him at Hauptstraße 97; he died on March
18, 1913 during a visit to a sanatorium in Switzerland and was
buried in Zürich.
basic laws of a socialist society are:
Enlistment of all able-bodied people, irrespective of sex, to
----- Abolition of Private Ownership of Land
----- Withering Away of the State (utopia)
"The masses demand that something be done…today."
"Anti-Semitism is the socialism of fools."
"...the Imperial Chancellor can rest assured that German
Social Democracy is a sort of preparatory school for militarism",
said to Bismarck in 1892.