Baran, Paul Alexander (1910–1964)
Paul Baran, the eminent Marxist economist, was born on 8 December 1910 in Nikolaev, Russia, the son of a medical doctor who was a member of the Menshevik branch of the Russian revolutionary movement. After the October Revolution the family moved to Germany, where Baran’s formal education began. In 1925 the father was offered a position in Moscow and returned to the USSR. Baran began his studies in economics at the University of Moscow the following year. Both his ideas and his politics were deeply and permanently influenced by the intense debates and struggles within the Communist Party in the late 1920s. Offered a research assignment at the Agricultural Academy in Berlin in late 1928, he enrolled in the University of Berlin, and when his assignment at the Agricultural Academy ended he accepted an assistantship at the famous Institute for Social Research in Frankfurt. This experience too had a lasting influence on his intellectual development.