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Cornelissen, Christianus Gerardus (1864–1942)

Homme Wedman

Subject History » Political History
Legal and Political » Political Philosophy

Place Low Countries » The Netherlands

Period 1000 - 1999 » 1800-1899

Key-Topics anarchism, bibliography, revolution, socialism

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405184649.2009.00407.x


Christianus Cornelissen, a leading Dutch organizer and theorist of international revolutionary syndicalism, socialism, and anarchism , was born in Hertogenbosch, the son of a impoverished master carpenter. Aided by a state scholarship, he was educated to became a primary school teacher in Middelburg (1888–91). There, he became involved in the the movement for universal suffrage. While engaged politically in the electoral struggle, he became editor of local socialist periodicals and contributed to the socialist paper Recht voor Allen. In January 1892 he became second editor of this paper of the Dutch Social-Democratic Federeration directed by Domela Nieuwenhuis . Cornelissen was a Marxist and in 1892 he published the first Dutch translation of The Communist Manifesto . His interpretation of Marxism was syndicalistic in 1891. In a letter to Nieuwenhuis he stated that because class struggle is economic, the unions must be the troops of the proletariat. In conflicts within Dutch socialism he backed Nieuwenhuis and vehemently opposed the new parliamentary Dutch Social Democratic Labour Party (1894). In 1893 Cornelissen federated several trade unions in the syndicalist Nationaal Arbeids Secretariaat. At the end of 1897 he resigned his posts when Domela Nieuwenhuis left the Socialist Federation and moved with his followers in the direction of individual anarchism. Cornelissen had ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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