Hardie, James Keir

Hardie, James Keir

Hardie, James Keir (kērˈ härˈdē), 1856–1915, British labor leader and socialist, b. Scotland. A coal miner, he became a union organizer and in 1888 founded the Scottish Labour party. In 1892, Hardie entered Parliament, becoming the first independent workers' representative to secure election. He was a founder (1893) and first president (1893–1900) of the Independent Labour party and was instrumental in forming (1900) the Labour Representation Committee, which became the Labour party.


See biographies by W. Steward (1921), E. Hughes (1956), and K. O. Morgan (1967); H. M. Pelling, Origins of the Labour Party (2d ed. 1965).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Hardie, James Keir


Born Aug. 15, 1856, in Legbrannock, Scotland; died Sept. 26, 1915, in Glasgow. Labor movement figure and reformer in Great Britain.

Hardie went to work in the mines at the age of ten, and in the 1870’s he joined the trade union movement. In the late 1880’s he concluded that it was necessary for the proletariat to be politically independent; however, he thought that this ought to be achieved strictly within the constitutional framework and thus rejected the class struggle. In 1888, Hardie founded the Scottish Labour Party, and in 1893, the Independent Labor Party (ILP). In 1892 he became the first person to be elected to Parliament as an Independent Labor candidate. After the creation of the Labour Party in 1900, in which the ILP was a collective member, Hardie became one of the leaders of the party. Hardie criticized the aggression of the British colonialists in the Boer War (1899–1902), and he was a pacificist at the outbreak of World War I. Later, however, Hardie allied himself with the social chauvinists.


Marx, K., and F. Engels. Soch., 2nd ed., vols. 38–39. (See Index of Names: Hardie.)
Lenin, V. I. Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vols. 26, 28. (See Index of Names: Hardie.)
Vinogradov, V. N. U istokov leiboristskoi partii. Moscow, 1965. (Contains bibliography.)
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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