Leon Blum: Evolution of a Socialist

Leon Blum: Evolution of a Socialist

Leon Blum: Evolution of a Socialist

Leon Blum: Evolution of a Socialist

Excerpt

"Blum was a democratic intellectual, a Socialist on principle." So said Edouard Herriot when he annuonced the news of Blum's death to the National Assembly of France on March 30, 1950. Léon Blum was all of that and something more.

That he was an intellectual is apparent in all of his activities. Brilliant pupil, able critic, astute jurist, learned statesman, he was a formidable opponent in any argument by virtue of his prodigious memory and his capacity for reasoning and logic. Quick to spot a reversal of opinion or an illogical statement, Blum often challenged the intellectual validity of other ideologies. In his analysis of contemporary problems, he could draw upon his extensive knowledge of the literature, history, and philosophy of his native land and of foreign countries. The diversity of his interests and the extent of his learning enabled him to escape the narrow materialism of Marxist philosophy. With his view of life as a tightly knit entity comprising many factors, Blum was a living denial of the charge that Socialism subordinates cultural and intellectual achievements to the pursuit of physical needs.

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