Rudolf Hilferding

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Rudolf Hilferding
Hilferding in 1928
Minister of Finance
In office
13 August 1923 – October 1923
Preceded by Andreas Hermes
Succeeded by Hans Luther
In office
29 June 1928 – 21 December 1929
Preceded by Heinrich Köhler
Succeeded by Paul Moldenhauer
Personal details
Born 10 August 1877(1877-08-10)
Leopoldstadt
Died 11 February 1941(1941-02-11) (aged 63)
Paris
Political party Social Democratic Party of Germany
Alma mater University of Vienna
Occupation Politician

Rudolf Hilferding (10 August 1877 – 11 February 1941) was an Austrian-born Marxist economist, leading socialist theorist,[1] politician and chief theoretician[2] for the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) during the Weimar Republic,[3] almost universally recognized as the SPD's foremost theoretician of his century, and a physician.[4]

He was born in Vienna, where he received a doctorate having studied medicine. After becoming a leading journalist for the SPD,[3] he participated in the November Revolution in Germany and was Finance Minister of Germany in 1923 and from 1928 to 1929. In 1933 he fled into exile, living in Zurich and then Paris, where he died in custody of the Gestapo in 1941.[1][5]

Hilferding was a propounder for the "economic" reading of Karl Marx identifying with the "Austro-Marxian" group.[6] He was the first to put forward the theory of organized capitalism.[7] He was the main defender to the challenge to Marx by Austrian School economist and fellow Vienna resident, Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk. Hilferding also participated in the "Crises Debate" – disputing Marx's theory of the instability and eventual breakdown of capitalism on the basis that the concentration of capital is actually stabilizing. He edited leading publications such as Vorwärts, Die Freiheit, and Die Gesellschaft.[3] His most famous work was Das Finanzkapital (Finance capital), one of the most influential and original contributions to Marxist economics[4] with substantial influence on Marxist writers such as Vladimir Lenin [7] and Nikolai Bukharin influencing his writings on imperialism.[2][8]

Publications and further readinig

Notes and references