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James Guillaume: “Karl Marx Pan-German and the International Workers’ Association” (1915)
Article published on 3 November 2017

by Eric Vilain

James Guillaume wrote in 1914 a small book, published in 1915, entitled Karl Marx Pan-German and the International Workers’ Association from 1864 to 1870.

In English-speaking anarchist literature, the qualification of “Pan-Germanist" carried by Bakunin and his friends against Marx often seems to be considered a form of anti-German racism. The only mention of “Pan-Germanism" on the title of Guillaume’s book is apparently enough to qualify it as “Germanophobic", although it has not been translated into English and few English-speaking anarchists have read it.

The opinions concerning the book are often based on second-hand sources hostile to anarchism, or simply on the title of the book without seeking further: the simple mention of Marx as a “pangermanist” is considered a priori a “Germanophobic” attitude – a charge also laid against Bakunin, considered as an “anti- German racist”. Unfortunately, the readers (even anarchist readers) who bear these accusations rarely question Marx and Engels’ ferocious Slavophobia, or ignore the slanderous accusations of “Pan-Slavism” carried on by them against the Russian revolutionary.