Revolt Library : Revolutionary Materials from the Past
Welcome to RevoltLib! Here you will find an archive of materials from the past that once helped people to abolish the state, fight capitalism, end sexism, demolish imperialism, and eliminate all forms of social domination. Information is power -- arm yourself!
This archive contains 3,189 texts, with 10,891,046 words or 67,592,462 characters.
A collection of historic materials detailing Anarchism, Libertarianism, and Anti-Authoritarianism. By understanding more about the past, we can better apply the principles we discover today.
"...there is no revolution without the masses..." -- Mikhail Bakunin
I. THE PLACE OF THE COMMUNE IN SOCIALIST EVOLUTION On March 18, 1871, the people of Paris rose against a despised and detested government, and proclaimed the city independent free, belonging to itself. This overthrow of the central power took place without the usual stage effects of revolution, without the firing of guns, without the shedding of blood upon barricades. When the armed people came out into the streets, the rulers fled away, the troops evacuated the town, the civil functionaries hurriedly retreated to Versailles carrying everything they could with them. The government evaporated like a pond of stagnant water in a spring breeze, and on the nineteenth the great city of Paris found herself free from the impurity which had defiled her, with the loss of scarcely a drop of her children's blood. Yet the change thus accomplished began a new era in that long series of revolutions whereby the peoples are marching from slavery to freedo... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
FROM THE DEATH HOUSE OF MASSACHUSETTS STATE PRISON - AUGUST 21, 1927 MY DEAR DANTE: I still hope, and we will fight until the last moment, to revindicate our right to live and be free, but all the forces of the State and of the Money and reaction are deadly against us because we are libertarians or anarchists. I write little of this because you are now a yet too little boy to understand these things and other things of which I would like to reason with you. But if you do well, you will grow and understand your father's and my case and your father's and my principles, for which we will soon be put to death. I tell you that for and of all I know of your father, he is not a criminal, but one of the bravest men I ever knew. One day you will understand what I am about to tell you: That your father has sacrificed everything dear and sa... (From : Signature.Pair.com.)
From: G.P. Maximoff, Syndicalists in the Russian Revolution The Author GREGORI PETROVICH MAXIMOFF was born on November 10, 1893, in the Russian village of Mitushino, province of Smolensk. After studying for the priesthood, he realized this was not his vocation and went to St. Petersburg, where he graduated as an agronomist at the Agricultural Academy in 1915. He joined the revolutionary movement, while a student, was an active propagandist and, after the 1917 revolution, joined the Red Army. When the Bolsheviks used the Army for police work and for disarming the workers, he refused to obey orders and was sentenced to death. The solidarity of the steelworkers' union saved his life. He edited the Anarcho-Syndicalist papers Golos Trouda (Voice of Labor) and Novy Golos Trouda (New Voice of Labor). Arrested on March 8, 1921, during the Kronstadt revolt, he was held with other comrades in the Taganka Prison, Moscow. Four months... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
Why do you clothe me with scarlet of shame? Why do you point with your finger of scorn? What is the crime that you hissingly name When you sneer in my ears, "Thou bastard born?" Am I not as the rest of you, With a hope to reach, and a dream to live? With a soul to suffer, a heart to know The pangs that the thrusts of the heartless give?" I am no monster! Look at me -- Straight in my eyes, that they do not shrink! Is there aught in them you can see To merit this hemlock you make me drink? This poison that scorches my soul like fire, That burns and burns until love is dry, And I shrivel with hate, as hot as a pyre, A corpse, while its smoke curls up to the sky? Will you touch my hand? It is flesh like yours; Perhaps a little more brown and grimed, For it could not be white while the drawers' and hewers', My brothers, were callouse... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
From: Bakunin's Writings, Guy A. Aldred Modern Publishers, Indore Kraus Reprint co. New York 1947 POLITICS AND THE STATE We have repelled energetically every alliance with bourgeois politics, even of the most radical nature. It has been pretended, foolishly and slanderously, that we repudiated all such Political connivance because we were indifferent to the great question of Liberty, and considered only the economic or material side of the problem. It has been declared that, consequently, we placed ourselves in the ranks of the reaction. A German delegate at the Congress of Basle gave classic expression to this view, when he dared to state that, who ever did not recognize, with the German Socialists Democracy, "that the conquest of political rights (power) was the preliminary condition of social emancipation," was, consciously or unconsciously an ally, of the Ceasars! These critics gr... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
About the people and individuals of the past who have made up revolutions, whether they were active revolutionaries or brilliant theoreticians. If we know how they lived in the past, we might know what's possible to do today.
"If you let a single ray of light through the shutter, it will go on diffusing itself without limit till it enlighten the world; but the shadow that was never so wide at first, as rapidly contracts till it comes to naught." -- Henry David Thoreau
(1896 - 1936) ~ Heart of the Anarchist Soldiers and Anarcho-Syndicalism During the Spanish Civil War : On the 15 Durruti arrived with a force of 1800 men to reinforce the defense of Madrid, where they went inmediately to the toughest section and on the 19 he was struck by a bullet as he walked by a supposedly secure area. (From : Communiello Bio.)
• "The emancipation of the working class requires the complete destruction of capitalism and we can't stop our revolutionary efforts until that happens." (From : "Durruti," by Abel Paz, part 1, chapter 1.)
• "We have the right and obligation to force the negative to clash with the positive and cause the spark. Is that adventurism? Then I say that all revolutions have been triggered by adventurists." (From : "Durruti," by Abel Paz, part 1, chapter 10.)
• "Socialism is either active or isn't Socialism." (From : "Durruti," by Abel Paz, part 1, chapter 1.)
(1888 - 1934) ~ Anarchist Leader of the Anti-Bolshevik, Anti-Capitalist Partisans of the Ukraine : Nestor Makhno was the leader of a libertarian peasant and worker army and insurrection in the Ukraine which successfully fought Ukrainian nationalists, the Whites, the Bolsheviks and the bourgeoisie and put anarchism into practice in the years following the Russian Revolution. (From : Intro to Struggle Against the State.)
• "The more a man becomes aware, through reflection, of his servile condition, the more indignant he becomes, the more the anarchist spirit of freedom, determination and action waxes inside him. That is true of every individual, man or woman, even though they may never have heard the word 'anarchism' before." (From : "The ABC of the Revolutionary Anarchist," by Nesto....)
• "The first of May is the symbol of a new era in the life and struggle of the toilers, an era that each year offers the toilers fresh, increasingly tough and decisive battles against the bourgeoisie, for the freedom and independence wrested from them, for their social ideal." (From : "The First of May," by Nestor Makhno, First Publis....)
• "As an individual, man gets back to his authentic personality when he rejects false thinking about life and reduces it to ashes, thereby recovering his real rights. It is through this dual operation of rejection and affirmation that the individual becomes a revolutionary anarchist and a conscious communist." (From : "The ABC of the Revolutionary Anarchist," by Nesto....)
(1895 - 1978) ~ CNT Radical, Anarcho-Syndicalist, and Spanish Civil War Historian : He was a French anarchist during the Spanish Civil War and was the son of a French Communard. Leval, himself was a French anarcho-syndicalist militant and a participant in the foundation congress of the Red International of Labor Unions from June-August 1921. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "The methodical police terror, the [Bolshevik] Party's tightening grip upon the whole of social life, the systematic annihilation of all non-Bolshevik currents, the no less systematic extermination of all revolutionaries who thought along lines different from those of the new masters, and indeed the eradication of every hint of dissent within the Party all proved that we were on the road to a new despotism that was not merely political but also intellectual, mental and moral, reminiscent of the darkest days of the Middle Ages." (From : "Anarchists Behind Bars," by Gaston Leval, Summer,....)
• "...the Spanish Libertarian workers co-ordinate and rationalize production in a much more satisfactory way than Capitalism had done. And I lay special stress on the disappearance of small unhealthy and costly workshops and factories, besides the correct use of machinery for the work most suited to it." (From : "Collectives in Spain," by Gaston Leval, 1945.)
• "...the means of production remained unused in the barns of the rich, whilst the poor peasants worked the land with roman plows drawn by worn out donkeys and mules!" (From : "Collectives in Spain," by Gaston Leval, 1945.)
(1808 - 1887) ~ Individualist Anarchist and Unitarian Christian Abolitionist : The greatest natural rights thinker of the 19th century was the American lawyer and maverick individualist Lysander Spooner. He responded to the tumultuous events of his era, including the Panic of 1837 and the Civil War, with pamphlets about natural rights, slavery, money, trial by jury and other timely subjects. (From : Jim Powell Bio.)
• "Again, the doctrine that the minority ought to submit to the will of the majority proceeds, not upon the principle that government is formed by voluntary association and for an agreed purpose on the part of all who contribute to its support, but upon the presumption that all government must be practically a state of war and plunder between opposing parties..." (From : "Free Political Institutions," by Lysander Spooner.)
• "There is no particle of truth in the notion that the majority have a right to rule, or exercise arbitrary power over, the minority simply because the former are more numerous than the latter. Two men have no more natural right to rule one than one has to rule two." (From : "Free Political Institutions," by Lysander Spooner.)
• "The doctrine that the majority have a right to rule proceeds upon the principle that minorities have no right in the government; for certainly the minority cannot be said to have any rights in a government so long as the majority alone determine what their rights shall be." (From : "Free Political Institutions," by Lysander Spooner.)
(1891 - 1927) ~ Italian Anarchist Activist and Martyr of the State : Sacco and Vanzetti feared the draft during World War I and in objection fled to Mexico with Sacco's family. When the war ended both returned to their homes. After they returned the two became more active in the anarchist community. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "So I turn over towards the soldiers and I said, 'Brothers, you will not fire on your own brothers, because they tell you to fire; no, brothers, remember that everyone of us has has mother and child, and you know that we fight for the freedom which is your freedom.'" (From : Letters of Sacco and Vanzetti.)
• "It is very true indeed, what you are saying -- that we can never be good and well again for the future -- as we want to be. No, I guess not: we can never get back that old young energy again, because of these dolorous long years of confinement..." (From : Letters of Sacco and Vanzetti.)
• "...when a man remains all day long back of these sad bars you feel your mind sometime very tired and exhausted of ideas..." (From : Letters of Sacco and Vanzetti.)