Brousse, Paul Louis

Brousse, Paul Louis

 

Born Jan. 23, 1844, in Montpellier; died Apr. 1, 1912, in Paris. French petit-bourgeois socialist, leader of the Possibilists. A physician by profession.

Brousse participated in the Paris Commune of 1871 and after its suppression emigrated first to Spain and then to Switzerland, where he became close to M. A. Bakunin and joined the anarchists; he was one of the leaders of the anarchist organization in Switzerland, the so-called Jura Federation, which was a member of the First International. In 1880 he returned to Paris, joined the Workers’ Party (founded in 1879), and worked for the socialist newspapers Egalité and Prolétaire. Together with B. Malon he became a leader of the Possibilists, who preached a renunciation of the class struggle and advocated actions within the limits of the “possible.” Brousse opposed the Marxist wing of the Workers’ Party, which was headed by J. Guesde, and proposed the theory of municipal socialism. In 1882 he promoted a split in the Workers’ Party and became leader of the party of the Possibilists. In 1905 he joined the United French Socialist Party but did not play an active role in it.

REFERENCES

Engels, F. E. Bernshteinu ot 20 okt. 1882. (Letters.) K. Marx and F. Engels, Soch., 2nd ed., vol. 35.
Engels, F. A. Bebeliu ot 28 okt. 1882. (Letter.) Ibid.
Lenin, V. I. “Predislovie k russkomy perevodu knigi ’Pis’ma I. F. Bekkera, I. Ditsgena, F. Engel’sa, K. Marksa i dr. k F. A. Zorge i dr.’ ” Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 15.
Lefranc, G. Le Mouvement socialiste sous la Troisième République (1875-1940). Paris, 1963.
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