British historian Eric J. Hobsbawn, a prolific writer who studied the labor movements of the 19th century, died on Monday in London at the age of 95. The cause of death was pneumonia. Hobsbawn was a leading historian within Britain’s Communist Party who sought to highlight the contributions of the average workers and agitators within capitalist societies. Born in Egypt, Hobsbawn became a communist at a young age and stuck with the party even after the Soviet Union decimated the Hungarian uprising in 1956. He eventually let his membership lapse after the fall of the Berlin Wall.
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