Marxist Writers: Karl Liebknecht


Karl Liebknecht Internet Archive


“The main enemy is at home!” – Illegal anti-war leaflet, 1915

Karl Liebknecht


The son of Wilhelm Liebknecht, one of the founders of the SPD, Karl Liebknecht trained to be a lawyer and defended many Social Democrats in political trials. He was also a leading figure in the socialist youth movement and thus became a leading figure in the struggle against militarism.

As a deputy in the Reichstag he was one of the first SPD representatives to break party discipline and vote against war credits in December 1914. He became a figurehead for the struggle against the war. His opposition was so successful that his parliamentary immunity was removed and he was imprisoned.

Freed by the November revolution he immediately threw himself into the struggle and became with Rosa Luxemburg one of the founders of the new Communist Party (KPD). Along with Luxemburg he was murdered by military officers with the tacit approval of the leaders of the SPD after the suppression of the so-called “Spartacist Uprising” in January 1919.

See more in MIA Glossary


Militarism and Anti-Militarism, 1907

Where Will Peace Come From?, 1912

German SDP and the War (with Rosa Luxemburg, Franz Mehring and Clara Zetkin), 1914

Liebknecht’s Protest Against the War Credits, 1914

The Main Enemy Is at Home, 1915

Revolutionary Socialism in Germany, 1916

The Future Belongs to the People
Speeches made since the beginning of the War, 1914–1916

To the Workers and Soldiers of the Allied Countries, 1918

Call for Revolution, 1918

A Call to the Workers of the World (with Clara Zetkin, Rosa Luxemburg and Franz Mehring), 1918

In Spite of Everything!, 1919 (Liebknecht’s last article)

Self-Determination of Nations and Self-Defense, date unknown (1915?)

Further reading:

The Junius pamphlet, Rosa Luxemburg, 1915
Rosa Luxemburg Internet Archive
A Letter from Prison by Leo Jogiches 1918
Clara Zetkin Internet Archive


Last updated on: 28 January 2024