- Croce, Benedetto
- (1866–1952)Born in Percasseroli, southern Italy, Croce was a leading philosopher and active in Italian politics. Greatly influenced by the philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, he in turn was a major influence on the great Marxist thinker and activist Antonio Gramsci. He wrote prolifically, producing some 70 books, including his Filosofia dello Spirito (Philosophy of Spirit) in four volumes on aesthetics (1909), logic (1917), ethics (1915), and philosophy of history (1921), Ariosto, Shakespeare, and Corneille (1920) and History of Europe in the Nineteenth Century (1932). Croce also founded the journal La Critica, which he edited for some 40 years and in which he published many of his writings. In his writings he elaborated a humanist philosophy which sought to provide a secular substitute for the beliefs of religion, with a commitment to a concept of human creative power at its center. His writings on Karl Marx praised his separation of ethical and political considerations, and criticized Friedrich Engels’ interpretation of Marx.Croce served as minister of education in 1920–21 and again after World War II, and also as a senator in the Italian government. An opponent of Fascism he was liberal and conservative in political outlook, and stands as an influence on the Marxist tradition rather than an advocate of it.
Historical dictionary of Marxism. David Walker and Daniel Gray . 2014.