Antonio Gramsci

Article

July 5, 2022

|box_width Antonio Gramsci (Italian: Antonio Gramsci; January 22, 1891, Ales, Sardinia - April 27, 1937, Rome) was an Italian revolutionary, Marxist theorist, founder and leader of the Italian Communist Party.

Biography

Childhood and youth

Antonio Gramsci was born on the island of Sardinia and was the fourth of seven children in the family of a petty official Francesco Gramsci (Albanian by origin). Even in his youth, Gramsci showed an interest in literature. Brother Gennaro's earlier fascination with socialism had a significant impact on his further development. In 1897, his father was imprisoned for 5 years on suspicion of abuse of office. Soon after that, his mother moved with the children to Gilartza, where Antonio finished elementary school. At the age of 11, he went to work for two years in the tax office in Hilartz to help his family, which was extremely limited in terms of material. However, he continued to study on his own and eventually returned to school, where his brilliant abilities in most subjects were revealed. Having won a state scholarship, he studied at the University of Turin at the Faculty of Literature, where he specialized in linguistics. His teacher Matteo Bartoli was a supporter of neolinguistics and encouraged Gramsci to collect Sardinian dialects and traditions. Due to health problems and lack of money, Gramsci never finished university.

Political activity

In 1913, he joined the Italian Socialist Party (1892-1994). He contributed to the socialist newspapers "Grido del Popolo" ("Voice of the People") and "Avanti!" ("Forward!"), engaged in educational activities among the workers of Turin. After the anti-war uprising in Turin in August 1917, Gramsci was elected secretary of the city section of the Socialist Party. In the conditions of the post-war revolutionary upsurge in Italy, Gramsci was the initiator of the movement for the creation of factory councils, which became a peculiar form of the Italian workers' struggle for power in 1919-1920. Influenced by the ideas of the French syndicalist Georges Sorel (1847–1922), Gramsci wrote that factory councils helped to unite the working class and allowed workers to understand their place in the production sphere, as well as to acquire the skills necessary to create a new society�