Karl Marx may be one of the most famous left wing names in history. Marx was a historic left wing thinker and foremost socialist academic of his day. His work focused on workers’ rights, class revolution, and establishing a post-capitalist society. His writings in Das Capital establish the basis of Marxism, and he published the Communist Manifesto alongside Frederich Engels.
Leon Trotsky was a revolutionary during the Lenin and Stalin eras. He spent his years following and propagating the words of Karl Marx and arguing that workers around the world needed to achieve revolution to free themselves from the bonds of capitalism. After Lenin’s death, Stalin’s rise to power saw Trotsky exiled from the Soviet Union, eventually seeking refuge in Mexico, where he was assassinated on the orders of Stalin.
Che Guevara is one of the most famous revolutionaries to have ever existed, thanks in part to the famous revolution poster featuring his face that has now been seen around the world. Though born in Argentina, Guevara was instrumental in organising the Cuban Revolution, espousing Marxism to encourage revolutions across Latin America. Guevara was highly critical of the Soviet Union for moving away from Marxist principles.
Clement Atlee may be the most left wing prime minister the United Kingdom has ever had! Atlee won power at the end of World War II, ousting wartime prime minister Winston Churchill. Although he maintained power for just a few years, Atlee pushed through sweeping nationalisation reforms, established the National Health Service and the welfare state, began the rebuilding of London following the Blitz, and reduced the national debt by a whopping 40%.
Helen Keller is most famous for her advocacy for equal rights for disabled people, as well as her own significant disabilities and her inspiring story in overcoming them. Keller developed deafness and near-full blindness as a child, causing immense challenges in communicating with her family and peers. Eventually learning to communicate through sign language and braille, Keller went on to gain prominence as a writer for her accounts of her own struggles with her disabilities. Keller also wrote essays supporting socialism, and was a staunch supporter and member of both the Industrial Workers of the World and the American Socialist Party.
These are just a small handful of the most famous names in left wing history. These figures helped to build and spread the theories and ideologies of socialism, Marxism, and collectivism. We hope to have some designs featuring these figures hitting our lines of socialist t-shirts very soon! Check back soon to see our new additions.