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General Workers' Union of Germany (German: Allgemeine Arbeiter-Union Deutschlands; AAUD), was the name of factory organisations formed following the German Revolution of 1918–1919 in opposition to the traditional trade unions. The AAUD was formed by the left communists in the Communist Workers' Party of Germany (KAPD) who considered organising based on trades as being an outmoded form of organisation and instead advocated organising workers based on factories, thus forming the AAUD. They were influenced by the industrial unionism of the Industrial Workers of the World.[1] The council communists organised these factory organisations as the basis for region-wide workers' councils.[2]

A section of the AAUD led by Otto Rühle, based in Essen, split from the AAUD, forming the Essen tendency of the AAUD, Allgemeine Arbeiter-Union – Einheitsorganisation.[3]


  1. ^ "Vor 80 Jahren". Trend. Redaktion trend bzw. "Arbeitskreis Kapitalismus aufheben". Retrieved 29 August 2016.
  2. ^ Bernhard Reichenbach, The KAPD in Retrospect: An Interview with a Member of the Communist Workers Party of Germany
  3. ^ The German-Dutch Communist Left - Philippe Bourrinet

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