KAUTSKY FOUNDATIONS OF CHRISTIANITY PDF

English Karl Kautsky is probably the first Marxist to interest himself both in the movement and the enigmatic personality of the crucified prophet. His book The Foundations of Christianity is a rather impressive attempt at a Marxist analysis. The book is rather original, innovative and has been rranslated into nine languages. Kaustky made his Foundations of Christianity into one of the most popular Marxist theoretical works. Kautsky wanted to interpret early Christianity as a precursor of the contemporary working class socialist movement.

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In it, he attempts to explain the origins of Christianity, and claims that it can best be explained by historical materialism rather than divinity. Publishing history[ edit ] The first edition in English, published in by George Allen and Unwin , followed the eleventh German version. The German text was re-translated into English by Henry F. Mins , and published by Russell and Russell in In , a translation by Jacob W.

Hartmann was published by Monthly Review Press. The edition current in print was published by Resistance in and contains a preface by Michael Lowy. The next dozen chapters are then taken up with a materialist description of the ancient Roman society from which early Christianity sprang. Kautsky then went on to describe the history of the Jewish people, up to the point where Christianity began. Having set the scene, Kautsky described the beginnings of Christianity.

Kautsky contended that Christianity was born out of a group of Jewish proletarians in a decaying Roman empire , who sought to defeat the Romans through a violent insurrection.

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Foundations Of Christianity

Do we not have in the Gospels the most extensive descriptions of the teachings and deeds of Jesus? The example of the falsification of Josephus showed us a character trait of ancient Christian historians, their complete indifference to the truth. It was not the truth, but effectiveness, that they were interested in, and they were not too delicate in the choice of their means. To be fair, it must be granted that they were not alone in their age. Credulousness on the part of the public, sensationalism together with lack of confidence in their own powers, the need to cling to superhuman authority, lack of a sense of reality qualities whose causes we shall soon come to learn , infected all of literature at that time, and the more it left the ground of the traditional the more it was so infected. We shall find numerous proofs of this in the Christian and Jewish literature. But the same tendency appears in the mystical philosophy, which to be sure had an inner affinity to Christianity.

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Karl Kautsky - Foundations of Christianity

In it, he attempts to explain the origins of Christianity, and claims that it can best be explained by historical materialism rather than divinity. Publishing history[ edit ] The first edition in English, published in by George Allen and Unwin , followed the eleventh German version. The German text was re-translated into English by Henry F. Mins , and published by Russell and Russell in In , a translation by Jacob W. Hartmann was published by Monthly Review Press. The edition current in print was published by Resistance in and contains a preface by Michael Lowy.

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Foundations of Christianity

One can not resist a deep feeling of wonder when one thinks of the Christian Church, now almost two thousand years old and still vigorous, more powerful than the governments of many countries. Anything that helps us to understand this colossal phenomenon, including the study of its origin, is of great and immediate practical significance, even though it takes us back thousands of years. This makes researches into the beginnings of Christianity of far greater interest than any other historical question that goes back further than the last two hundred years; it also however makes finding the beginnings even more difficult than it would otherwise be. The Christian Church has become a sovereign organisation serving the needs either of its own rulers or those of other, secular rulers who have been able to gain control over it. Any one who opposes these rulers must oppose the church as well.

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