Erich Mühsam

AZL flag holder TransparentErich Mühsam (6th April 1878 – 10th July 1934) was a Jewish anarchist, poet, playwright and one of the leaders of the Communist seizure of Bavaria. Mühsam was born in Berlin, the third child of Siegfried Seligmann Mühsam, a Jewish pharmacist. In 1896 Mühsam was expelled from the Katharineum-Gymnasium in Lübeck for participating in Communist activities. Mühsam moved to Berlin in 1900, where he became involved in radical Marxist group Neue Gemeinschaft and met Gustav Landauer who schooled him in subversive Marxist techniques. In 1911, Mühsam founded the newspaper, Kain (Cain), as a forum for anarchocommunist ideologies. Mühsam was a key figure in the Communist seizure of Bavaria-the Bayerische Räterepublik (Bavarian Soviet Republic). Lasting 6 days and lead by Marxist Ernst Toller and anarchists Gustav Landauer; initially put down by Freikorps this was only a temporary reprieve as Germany would spend 14 years under the Jewish Weimar Republic. Mühsam was arrested on 28th February 1933 on charges relating to Reichstag fire in Berlin. He committed suicide while in custody at Oranienburg labour camp.

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