Red Rosa : A Graphic Biography of Rosa Luxemburg
Rosa tells the life story of philosopher, economist, publisher, writer, organizer, political leader, and martyr Rosa Luxemburg, in full-color, graphic form. The story follows Rosa from her family life in Jewish Poland, where she became the leader of a general strike at age fifteen and was exiled from her homeland at eighteen, to her immersion into the then largest radical party in the world, the German Social Democratic Party, to her founding of the German Communist Party and leadership of the German revolution of 1919. This beautifully drawn graphic life gives "Red Rosa" her due as an iconic radical, but also portrays a fascinating woman with a rich love life, struggles with physical disability, and an abiding love of literature and theater. Rosa will contribute to the growing understanding of one of the 20th century's greatest revolutionaries.
- Paperback | 224 pages
- 177 x 254 x 15mm | 367g
- 03 Nov 2015
- Verso Books
- London, United Kingdom
- illustrated throughout
"Utterly brilliant. The best book I've read this year" Steve Bell, Guardian "A courageous leader of the early twentieth-century socialist movement-a woman who dared to question both Marx and Lenin-Luxemburg was also, as Kate Evans reveals in this brilliant graphic biography, a person of deep passions, ecstatic insights, and ultimately, as fascism emerged from the ruins of World War I-heartbreak of historic dimensions. This book is hard to put down and contains a challenge that is impossible to turn away from: We could create a better world-peaceful, egalitarian, even joyful-if we are willing to learn from Red Rosa." Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Living with a Wild God "[Evan's] storytelling is a clever mix of humor, pathos, politics, and the horrors of war...[a] compelling story of a strong, independent woman who never deviated from her beliefs." Booklist "Five stars. The perfect book for [the] socialist-curious ... What Rosa Luxemburg wrote about and predicted is scarily relevant today." John Yohe, Comics Bulletin "A story told with verve, humor, and great art." Trina Robbins, author of Pretty in Ink "Kate Evans deserves our gratitude for telling the tragic tale of this early twentieth-century revolutionary." Sharon Rudahl, author and artist of Dangerous Woman "[Rosa Luxemburg] gets her due in a full-length graphic novel biography ... Red Rosa fits comfortably in this fall theme of feminist representation in graphic novels and comics." Sarah S. Ward, BookRiot "If the bedrock of this biography is its combination of Marxist theory and historical narrative-including but not limited to Luxemburg's participation in the international socialist movement, German politics, and the Russian Revolution of 1905-the motherlode is its touching portrayal of a woman who sacrificed her life for her beliefs." Jan Herman, Arts Journal "We need more political cartoonists like Kate Evans. She is an artist who lives her art and a radical who lives her politics ... she can write about revolution, not as a historical object, but as a real, relevant, living thing, because Kate is herself a revolutionary." Seth Tobocman, author and artist of Disaster and Resistance "Stunningly good." Paul Mason, author of Postcapitalism "If you have ever wanted to learn about Rosa Luxemburg, this book is the perfect entry point ... Kate Evans has made the stirring story of Rosa Luxemburg's legacy accessible to a new generation of readers. No matter how powerful the adversaries or steep the challenge, Luxemburg's passion for social and economic justice remained." Randy Shaw, Beyond Chron "Wonderful. I love the way it incorporates complicated historical details into a moving biographical account." Mary M. Talbot, author of Dotter of Her Father's Eyes "Red Rosa is a wonderfully composed and lively book. The story it tells is compelling, inspirational and fundamentally human. Instructional in its politics and discussions of economics, Red Rosa is also at turns humorous, romantic, and emotional. The decision to write this work in the graphic novel form was a brilliant one; if there is a biography whose multiple dimensions requires more than words to tell it, Rosa Luxembourg's is such a biography." Ron Jacobs, Counterpunch "The book has an infectious quality and an embracing enthusiasm for revolutionary ideas. It's a perfect historic complement to the ongoing radicalisation of the Labour Party. An empowering read for would-be revolutionaries as much as for "old hands." Morning Star "I admire it as an artist. I admire it as a writer. A huge achievement." Molly Crabapple "...in its best moments it does a fine job of telling her story. The prison scenes are particularly good." Rachel Cooke, Observer best graphic novels of 2015 "Evans startles and inspires with her beautiful symbiosis of graphic and text. It is not tragedy that Evans ends with, the tragedy of Rosa's death at the age of forty-seven and the violence of the next decades it portended, but rather the inspiration she left to her comrades and the inspiration she can still bring to those who long for change." Booklet "A stirring and beautiful book ... Red Rosa is of more than biographical or aesthetic interest as an introduction to Rosa Luxembourg's ideas. Its massive appendix, providing lengthy quotations from sour material for every citation in the comic, is an education in itself." Michael Robbins, Chicago Tribune "Luxemburg's journey out of Poland to becoming a leader of the German Communist uprising certainly contains enough excitement to fill the pages of a graphic novel. A lively history of Luxemberg's life and fine blend of Evans' other areas of thematic interests of feminism, class tensions and womanhood." Broadly "If it were a movie, you might call Red Rosa a tour de force, but that would be short-changing it. Red Rosa is a gripping, wonderfully illustrated account of Rosa Luxemburg the person, but more importantly a straightforward and intellectually honest introduction to her politics and her theoretical contributions. It embodies everything implied by the phrase 'Marxismus theorie und praxis.'" Los Angeles Review of Books "A unique format that is as informed and informative as it is absolutely absorbing from beginning to end." - Midwest Book Review "Kate Evans' striking pairing of word and image to tell Luxemburg's story is so perfect that it seems surprising that no-one has thought of it before." - Sophie Mayer, The F Word "Revolutionary in her intellect, viewpoints, and sociosexual life, Luxembourg more than earns her place among women of the past century whose acts were precedent-shattering." - Library Journal
About Kate Evans
Paul Buhle, formerly a senior lecturer at Brown University, produces radical comics, and is a recipient of an Eisner Award, the comics industry's Oscars. He founded the SDS Journal Radical America and the archive Oral History of the American Left and, with Mari Jo Buhle, is coeditor of the Encyclopedia of the American Left. He lives in Madison. Kate Evans is a radical cartoonist, artist, author, and activist. She draws a weekly strip for The Morning Star (UK) and feature-length cartoons in The Spark magazine. She is the author of numerous books, comics and zines including Funny Weather: Everything you Didn't Want to Know About Climate Change but Probably Should Find Out , and The Food of Love.