Karl Hjalmar Branting

Picture of Karl Hjalmar Branting

Date of Birth: 11/23/1860

Age: 65

Place of birth: Stockholm

Citizenship: Sweden


After graduating from Uppsala University focused on the study of mathematics and astronomy, in 1882 he became assistant director of the Stockholm Observatory.

While still a student he became an ardent supporter of liberal ideas, was interested in issues of social structure of society. A case where it is from its own funds supported the Stockholm operating institution is experiencing financial difficulties. Turning to the fate of Branting became 1883 - the year when he attended a lecture French socialist Paul Lafargue in Paris and met with Eduard Bernstein in Zurich. In 1884 he finally left the academic career and as an editor of a radical newspaper "Tiden" toured France, Switzerland, Germany and Russia, where he talked with the theoreticians of socialism, and ordinary workers. The result of these talks was the conviction that socialism provides the best solution for all modern problems. In 1885 he became editor in chief of "Tiden", but financial difficulties forced the closing edition a year later. At the same time the leaders of the Swedish Socialist Party Branting offered to take the post of chief editor of another Socialist newspaper - "social democracy." He dedicated this edition `31 his life and turned it into the country`s leading political magazine.

Branting was at the forefront of the Swedish Social Democratic Workers` Party in 1889. From 1907 until his death he was its chairman. In 1896, he - the first representative of the Social Democrats in parliament. By 1917, the Social Democrats rightly be called a third party in addition to the traditional two-party political system in Sweden. In the same year they went to the government by signing a coalition with the Liberal Party and Branting received the portfolio of Minister of Finance. This government has carried out a constitutional reform in 1919, granting the right to vote to all male citizens, without exception. However, the coalition fell apart when the Liberals refused to support the demands of the Social-Democrats on the reform of the tax laws, unemployment insurance and nationalization. After that Branting formed his first government, but without a majority in parliament, its position was fragile. He again became prime minister from 1921 to 1923, but this time he was confronted with a coalition of liberals and conservatives. Only in the 1924 election the Social Democrats won a comfortable majority in parliament and Branting became prime minister for the third time, up until 1925, when for health reasons was forced to resign.

Branting left a bright trace in the international relations of the first quarter of the 20th century. He distinguished himself as a pacifist and advocate of arbitration in the matter obotdelenii Norway from Sweden in 1905, to promote the peaceful settlement of the conflict. In World War I, he sympathized with the Entente, but insisted the country`s neutrality. He fought for the international solidarity of the trade union movement despite national differences; represented Sweden at Parizhckoy Peace Conference of 1919, he campaigned for Sweden`s entry into the League of Nations and represented the country in the League in 1923. He participated in the International Committee on Disarmament in 1924 and 1920-1921.

He was "constitutionally pacifist" - the enemy the use of military force as a coercive measure and guarantee the implementation of the League of Nations decisions. Arbitration, in his opinion, was the perfect way to solve international conflicts. Therefore, he took part in the development of the Geneva Protocol on international arbitration.

Proceedings: Socialdemokratiens Arhundrade. Stockholm: Aktiebolaget Ljus, 1904-1906.