Victor d'Hupay

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Joseph Alexandre Victor d'Hupay (1746–1818) was a French writer and philosopher. He is best known as the first theorician of modern communism.

Portrait of Victor d'Hupay (ca.1790)

Life and works[edit]

In 1746 Victor d'Hupay was born into an aristocratic family in the village of La Tour-d'Aigues in the Luberon, Provence.

While still young he wrote texts on agriculture and economics, expressing his wish to share his land with his neighbours, thus transforming the ideals of the Enlightenment philosophers into practice. His first book, Projet de communauté philosophe, published in 1777, advocated the idea of living in a sort of commune. In 1785, just before the French revolution, he was referred to as a communist in a book review by Restif de la Bretonne; according to some sources, this was the first time that the word "communism" was used in print in its modern sense.

During his life, Victor d'Hupay divided his time between La Tour-d'Aigues, Aix-en-Provence and the neighbouring village of Fuveau, to the south of Montagne Sainte-Victoire, where he died in 1818. The restored family bastide in Fuveau was run according to his principles.


Further reading[edit]

  • Nicolas Flippe, Victor d'Hupay, auteur communiste au XVIIIe siècle (to be published).

External links[edit]