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 3,590 texts, with 12,635,021 words or 78,639,647 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.
"It has cost mankind much time and blood to secure what little it has gained so far from kings, czars and governments." -- Emma Goldman
It has been the fashion, especially among orthodox Marxists, to hold in contempt any theory of politics which did not justify itself in action, and this emphasis on action has often led to a confusion of means and ends the means too often overshadowing the ends and becoming a substitute for them. The dictatorship of the proletariat, for example, at first put forward as a means towards the classless society, becomes stabilized in Russia as the sovereignty of a new class. Anarchism does not confuse means and ends, theory and practice. As a theory it relies on reason alone, and if the conception of society which it thus arrives at seems utopian and even chimerical, it does not matter, for what is established by right reasoning cannot be surrendered to expediency. Our practical activity may be a gradual approximation towards the ideal, or it may be a sudden revolutionary realization of that ideal, but it must never be a compromise. Proudhon was often ac... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Last Essay: "1967" This is Bertrand Russell's last manuscript. Untitled, it was annotated "1967" by Russell, at the age of 95, two or three years before he died. Ray Monk published it first in The Independent of London on the 25th anniversary of the Russell Archives. The essay's politics are uncannily prescient. The time has come to review my life as a whole, and to ask whether it has served any useful purpose or has been wholly concerned in futility. Unfortunately, no answer is possible for anyone who does not know the future. Modern weapons make it practically certain that the next serious war will exterminate the human race. This is admitted by all competent authorities, and I shall not waste time in proving it. Any man who cares what the future may have in store therefore has to choose between nothingness and conciliation, not once, but throughout future ages until the sun grows cold. (From : mcmaster.ca.)
Table of Contents Introduction Inalienable Tenets of Anarchism The Class Struggle Organization and Anarchism The Role of an Anarchist in an Authoritarian Society Bringing About the New Society The Marxist Criticism of Anarchism The Social-Democratic Critique of Anarchism The Liberal-Democratic Objection to Anarchism The Fascist Objection to Anarchism The Average Person's Objection to Anarchism Introduction The Historical Background to Anarchism It is not without interest that what might be called the anarchist approach goes back into antiquity; nor that there is an anarchism of sorts in the peasant movements that struggled against State oppression over the centuries. But the modern anarchist movement could not claim such precursors of revolt as its own more than the other modern working class... (From : Hack.org.)
Translated from the French by Robert Helms "La Mort du Chien" originally appeared in the monarchist paper Le Galois under the pen name Henry Lys on August 23, 1884, about a year before the author's conversion to anarchism. Although most of Mirbeau's work remains untranslated, he is now regarded by French critics as one of the most important writers of his period, and his 1903 play Business is Business made a triumphant return to the Paris stage in 1995. He is best known to anglophone posterity for his novels The Torture Garden and Diary of a Chambermaid . His master called him Turk. He was thin, yellow, and sad, with a pointed snout, a small build, and short, badly cropped ears that were always bleeding. The tail he wore on his rump looked like a scabby question mark. In the summertime, Turk went into the fields to guard the cattle, and into the roads to chase passersby who dea... (From : Mid-Atlantic Infoshop.)
Written: August 1907; Source: Bakunin on Anarchy, translated and edited by Sam Dolgoff, 1971. James Guillaume, Bakunins friend and comrade-in-arms, edited the last five volumes of the six-volume French edition of his collected works. Guillaumes biographical sketch of Bakunin, originally appeared in his introduction to Volume II of that edition. This sketch is a primary source not only on the life of Bakunin, but also on the most significant events in the socialist movement of that period. It incidentally contributes valuable background information for many of the other selections in the present volume. Guillaume, who did not limit himself to recording events but also took part in shaping them, had been inclined toward anarchism even before he met Bakunin in 1869. Earlier, he had been one of the founders of the First International in Switzerland, where it held its first congress, in Geneva, in 1866. He attended all its congres... (From : Marxists.org.)
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.
"The whole left-wing ideology, scientific and Utopian, was evolved by people who had no immediate prospect of attaining power. It was, therefore, an extremist ideology, utterly contemptuous of kings, governments, laws, prisons, police forces, armies, flags, frontiers, patriotism, religion, conventional morality, and, in fact, the whole existing scheme of things." -- George Orwell
(1869 - 1928) ~ Big Bill Haywood, Founder and Leader of the IWW : One of the foremost labor radicals of the American West, "Big Bill" Haywood became a leading figure in labor activities across the United States. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "...I know I owe my life to the workers of the nation, it is to the working class of the nation that I am under obligation, not to any subdivision of that class. That is why I am here now. That is why I am talking working-class solidarity, because I want to see the working class do for themselves what they did for me." (From : ...I know I owe my life to the workers of the nati....)
• "For the revolution to be successful, it will have to result in the ownership and control of the land, shops, mines and railroads by the workers." (From : "Industrial Socialism," by Frank Bohn and William ....)
• "If the workers can organize so that they can stand idle they will then be strong enough so that they can take the factories." (From : c.)
(1858 - 1942) ~ French Freethinker, Secularist, and Proponent of Synthesis Anarchism : In 1927 he led a secession from the national Union Anarchiste, and in 1928 he helped to found the Association des Federalistes Anarchistes and to begin its paper, La Voix Libertaire (Libertarian Voice), which lasted from 1928 until 1939. He was reconciled with the national organization and Le Libertaire in 1934. (From : "Raven," Freedom Press.)
• "All children suffer because of the family, some because they have one, others because they don't." (From : "Libertarian Communism," by Sebastien Faure, 1903.)
• "God is error, and I no longer believe in him; God is a lie and hypocrisy, and I combat him; God is religion, and not only does this not console me, but it is an affliction; not only does it not bring humanity tranquility and joy, but it has written the most painful and bloody pages of history, and this is why I fight against religion." (From : "Libertarian Communism," by Sebastien Faure, 1903.)
• "Love is, by its very nature subject to whims; it's capricious, electric. It is madness to want to submit it to fixed rules applicable to all. Philosophically, liberty is the sole regime to which it can adapt itself." (From : "Libertarian Communism," by Sebastien Faure, 1903.)
(1882 - 1945) ~ Bolshevik-Aligned Leader of the Russian Nabat Anarchists : March of 1920 saw him taken to Moscow, where he would remain prisoner until October, when he and many other anarchists were released by virtue of a treaty between the Soviet Union and Makhno's army. Voline then returned to Kharkov, resuming his old activities... (From : Rudolph Rocker Bio.)
• "Yet there is consolation to be had. The masses learn through all too palpable first hand experience. And the experience is there." (From : "The Unknown Revolution," by Voline.)
• "Socialism, so mighty in Germany, Austria and Italy, has proved powerless. 'Communism', itself very strong, especially in Germany, has proved powerless. The trade unions have proved powerless. How are we to account for this?" (From : "The Unknown Revolution," by Voline.)
• "As we know, there it was an authoritarian state communism (Bolshevism) that scored a stunning and rather easy victory in the events of 1917. Now, these days, nearly seventeen years on from that victory, not only is communism proving powerless to resist fascism abroad, but, where the regime within the USSR itself is concerned, the latter is more and more often being described more and more deliberately as 'red fascism'." (From : "The Unknown Revolution," by Voline.)
(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.)
• "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.)
• "You have to lead the struggle yourselves, without bosses or leaders." (From : "Durruti," by Abel Paz, part 1, chapter 11.)
• "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.)
(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....)
• "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....)
• "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....)