MIA: Encyclopedia of Marxism: Glossary of People



Zetkin, Clara (1857-1933)

A prominent figure in the German and international workers' movement, most notably in the struggles womens workers' movement. From 1895, a National Executive member of the German SPD, and on its left-wing; member of the Bookbinders Union in Stuttgart, and active in the Tailors and Seamstresses Union, becoming its provisional International Secretary in 1896, despite the fact that it was illegal for women to be members of trade unions in Germany at that time. As Secretary of the International Bureau of Socialist Women, Zetkin organised the Socialist Women's Conference in March 1915. Along with Alexandre Kollontai, Zetkin fought for unrestricted suffrage, and against the 'bourgeois feminist' position supporting the restriction of the vote by property or income. Zetkin and Rosa Luxemburg led the left-wing and waged a fierce struggle against revisionism as well as the center represented by Kautsky. During the War joined the Spartacists along with Luxemburg and Liebknecht. A founding member of the German Communist Party in 1918 along with comrades including Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg. Became a delegate to the Reichstag from 1920; secretary of the International Women's Secretariat and member of the Executive Committee of the Communist International from 1921, but lived in Russia from 1924 until her death in 1933.

See the Clara Zetkin Archive.


Zetkin, Konstantin (Costia) (b. 1885)

Youngest son of Clara Zetkin. As a young adult became an admirer and lover of Rosa Luxemburg. Worked on his mother's publication Die Gleichheit(Equality)


Zetkin, Maxim (b. 1883)

Oldest son of Clara Zetkin. Became a physician in Germany.


Zeno of Citium (c. 336-264 BCE)

Born in Cyprus. Founder of the Stoic School. Few of his writings survive.


Zeno of Elea (490-430 BCE)

Representative of the Eleatic School of Greek philosophy, famous for his paradoxes. By showing that concept of motion was inherently self-contradictory, and he drew the conclusion that motion was only "seeming". He also "proved" that plurality was impossible and that a faster thing can never overtake a slower thing. Hegel shows that Zeno is right in proving that the concepts are self-contradictory, but wrong in drawing the conclusion that these things cannot be objectively true as a result, but rather that Nature is self-contradictory; that motion exists, and motion is self-contradictory.

See Hegel on Zeno.