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 3,177 texts, with 10,844,800 words or 67,594,800 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.
"'But,' it is usually asked, 'What will there be instead of Governments?' There will be nothing. Something that has long been useless, and therefore superfluous and bad, will be abolished. An organ that, being unnecessary, has become harmful, will be abolished." -- Leo Tolstoy
FRIEND AND FOE. A MAN condemned to lifelong imprisonment had escaped from his confinement and was seeking safety in headlong flight. His pursuers were close at his heels. He was running with all his might, and the distance between him and them was becoming steadily greater. Suddenly he sees before him a stream with precipitous banks, a narrow but deep torrent, . . . . and he cannot swim. But the stream is bridged by a thin plank, half-rotten with age. The fugitive has already one foot upon it. And there, by chance, stand his dearest friend and his bitterest foe. The enemy uttered no sound, and merely folded his arms. The friend, on the contrary, cried out at the top of his voice: "For God's sake, consider, foolhardy man, wh... (From : AnarchyArchives.)
Bakunin to Nechayev on the role of secret revolutionary societies
Bakunin to Nechayev on the role of secret revolutionary societies June 2, 1870 This text is from Spunk press, the original source is the June 2, 1870 letter to Nechayev (published in pamphlet form under the title Bakunin on Violence by the Anarchist Switchboard, NYC--the original is in the Herzen archives). Nechayev was a young Russian revolutionary who had a close relationship with Bakunin for a while in Switzerland in the late 1860's. There is some speculation that they may have been lovers. In any case Nechayev was the author of the 'Catechism of the Revolutionary', an authoritarian manual for the formation of secret societies. Some have suggested Bakunin was also involved in drafting this but as the quotes below... (From : flag.blackened.net.)
WHAT IS ANARCHISM? To the Editor of "Freedom." DEAR COMRADE,-A number of the members of the Socialist League here, are greatly interested in the discussion that bag recently appeared in Commonweal concerning the difference between the principles of Anarchist Communism and those of unqualified Communism or Socialism. We have long been anxious to understand clearly and definitively what that difference is. The statement of principles contained in the two letters of William Morris (May 18 and August 17) appears to us to fully embrace all the communism and liberty that is needful and indeed possible among men. Knowing, however, that there are many brave and highly gifted men who call themselves Anarchist Communists in distincti... (From : AnarchyArchives.)
Does God Exist?12 Proofs of the Non-Existence of God Sebastian Faure There are two ways of studying and trying to solve the problem of the inexistence of God. One way is that of eliminating the hypothesis God from the field of plausible and necessary conjectures by a clear precise explanation through the exposition of a positive system of the universe, its origin, its successive evolutions and its final scope. But such an exposition would make the idea of God useless and would destroy beforehand the whole metaphysical edifice upon which it has been placed by spiritual philosophers and theologians. However, taking in consideration the present status of human knowledge and duly confining ourselves to that which is demonstrable an... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
JUSTICE IN ENGLAND. THE Home Secretary, whose private judgment, or the lack of it, is arbiter of life or death for accused Englishmen, has triumphantly vindicated the majesty of the law by causing a Jewish lad to be publicly murdered. The unhappy youth had fled from the horrors of Russian conscription to the worse misery of an exile's life of semi-starvation in London. His brain reeled amid the wretchedness of his lot; he meditated suicide; in reckless despair he is said to have killed a poor woman who balked his desperate search for a few shillings. Victims both of the horrible injustice of society, of the inhuman despotism of the Czar, and the equally inhuman greed of English monopolists ... (From : AnarchyArchives.)
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.
"Civilization, therefore, or that which is so-called, has operated two ways: to make one part of society more affluent, and the other more wretched, than would have been the lot of either in a natural state." -- Thomas Paine
(1854 - 1929) ~ British-American Anarchist and Magonista Editor : William C. Owen was a British-born Anarchist who was active in California with Ricardo Flores Magón.
William Charles Owen (1854–1929) was a British–American anarchist best known for his activism during the Mexican Revolution and English-language translations of Mexican anarchist Ricardo Flores Magón. (From : Wikipedia.org.)
(1844 - 1916) ~ Leader of the Anarchist Section of the First International : He later became one of the leading members of the Jura Federation, the Anarchist wing, of the First International. He met Bakunin in 1869, and adopted much of his anarcho-collectivist ideas. Both Guillaume and Bakunin were expelled from the International at the Hague Congress in 1872. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "The truth cannot be decided by vote; it verifies and imposes itself by the mighty power of its own evidence." (From : "Ideas on Social Organization," by James Guillaume....)
• "It is not with decrees, with words written on paper, that the Revolution will emancipate the people but with deeds." (From : "Ideas on Social Organization," by James Guillaume....)
• "When abundant food is available and free for all, civilization in general will have taken a giant step forward." (From : "Ideas on Social Organization," by James Guillaume....)
(1812 - 1886) ~ American Individualist Anarchist, Abolitionist, and Labor Union Activist : He moved to New York, where he became interested in linguistics, and later equitable commerce. He established a utopian community in New York City called Unity Home, and it was during this time that he began to formulate his philosophy of universology. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "The whole of that legislation which establishes or tolerates that form of human bondage which is called slavery is at this moment undergoing the most determined and vigorous onset of public opinion which any false and tyrannical institution of Government was ever called upon to endure. The full and final abolition of slavery can not but be regarded, by every reflecting mind, as prospectively certain." (From : "The True Constitution Of Government In The Sovere....)
• "Under the old order of things, government interfered to determine the trade or occupation of the Individual, to settle his religious faith, to regulate his locomotion, to prescribe his hours of relaxation and retiremeut, the length of his beard, the cut of his apparel, his relative rank, the mode of his social intercourse, and so on continuously, until government was in fact every thing, and the Individual nothing." (From : "The True Constitution Of Government In The Sovere....)
• "Government still deals with criminals by the old-fashioned process of punishment, but both science and philanthropy concur in pronouncing that the grand remedial agency for crime is prevention, and not cure." (From : "The True Constitution Of Government In The Sovere....)
(1886 - 1963) ~ Scottish Bakuninist and Anarcho-Communist from Glasgow : Guy Alfred Aldred had worked ceaselessly at his propaganda, writing, publishing and public speaking, he took on injustices wherever he saw it. He had spoken at every May Day for 60 years except the years he spent in prison. (From : Glasgow Caledonian University.)
• "Anti-Parliamentarism is now the recognized Socialism of the Proletariat." (From : Socialism and Parliament.)
• "To dream of a society not founded on the 'law of constructive murder,' of a social state in which all are brethren and peace and good fellowship prevail, of a society founded on truth and freedom, is to become an enemy of the society that is, and to be regarded as a dreamer of the most fanatical type." (From : Studies in Communism.)
• "It is only the effect of this menace, only the fear of the power of the revolutionary agitator outside parliament, that persuades the capitalist class to tolerate the presence of Labor members inside." (From : Socialism and Parliament.)
(1854 - 1939) ~ American Father of Individualist Anarchism : An individualist Anarchist, Tucker (1854Ð1939) was a person of intellect rather than of action, focusing on the development of his ideas and on the publication of books and journals, especially the journal Liberty: Not the Daughter but the Mother of Order... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "But although, viewing the divine hierarchy as a contradiction of Anarchy, they do not believe in it, the Anarchists none the less firmly believe in the liberty to believe in it. Any denial of religious freedom they squarely oppose." (From : "State Socialism and Anarchism," by Benjamin R. Tu....)
• "It has ever been the tendency of power to add to itself, to enlarge its sphere, to encroach beyond the limits set for it..." (From : "State Socialism and Anarchism," by Benjamin R. Tu....)
• "...Anarchism, which may be described as the doctrine that all the affairs of men should be managed by individuals or voluntary associations, and that the State should be abolished." (From : "State Socialism and Anarchism," by Benjamin R. Tu....)