Revolt Library : Revolutionary Materials from the Past
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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 3,717 texts, with 17,667,148 words or 108,422,490 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
Let Him Leave Politics to the Politician and Prayers to the Preacher
Who has stood upon the seashore and watched the weird dash of the ceaseless waves and has not become tired of their monotonous sameness? Still there was occasionally a wave which could attract and fix our attention for the time being by rearing its cap above the rest and thus become conspicuous. Who but a devoted soul in this labor movement does not at times become tireda weary tiredness, verging on a disgust at the apparent sameness and dreary monotony of the wage system as depicted by those engaged in the noble work of exposing the hideous inequalities of the present economic system? Yet, like the waves, there arises amid all this monotony a wrong sometimes as much or more glaring in all its details that not only is our attention attracted but our sympathies are enlisted. Who, surrounded even as we are in the midst of organizations whose mission it is to depict the wrongs to which the propertyless class are subjected, could help but s... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
Foreword to the Second Edition The revolution has come, though I did not expect it this way. War has come, just as I expected; and in that war I soon saw defeat and revolution relentlessly approaching. With a truly profound bitterness I state: it is now clear that I was essentially correct in this Call for Socialism and in articles in my journal The Socialist. A political revolution in Germany had not yet occurred; now it has been completed, and only the revolutionaries inability to construct the new economy, in particular, as well as the new freedom and self-determination, could be held responsible if a reaction should bring about the reestablishment of new privileged powers. All shades of Marxist Social Democratic parties, in all their varieties, are incapable of political practice, of the constitution of humanity and its popular institutions and of establishing a government representing labor and peace, just as they cannot a...
Published by Freiheit Publishing Association New York Among all mental diseases which man has systematically inoculated into his cranium, the religious pest is the most abominable. Like all things else, this disease has a history; it only regrettable that in this case nothing will be found of the development from nonsense to reason, which is generally assumed to be the course of history. Old Zeus and his double, Jupiter, were still quite decent, jolly, we might even say, somewhat enlightened fellows, if compared with the last triplet on the pedigree of gods who, on examination, can safely rival with Vitzliputzli as to brutality and cruelty. We won't argue at all with the pensioned or dethroned gods, for they no longer do any harm. But the more modern, stir officiating cloud-lollers and terrorists of hell we s... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
What is anarchism? Anarchism is the movement for social justice through freedom. It is concrete, democratic and egalitarian. It has existed and developed since the seventeenth century, with a philosophy and a defined outlook that have evolved and grown with time and circumstance. Anarchism began as what it remains today: a direct challenge by the underprivileged to their oppression and exploitation. It opposes both the insidious growth of state power and the pernicious ethos of possessive individualism, which, together or separately, ultimately serve only the interests of the few at the expense of the rest. Anarchism promotes mutual aid, harmony and human solidarity, to achieve a free, classless society a cooperative commonwealth. Anarchism is both a theory and practice of life. Philosophically, it aims for perfect accord between the individual, society and nature. In an anarchist society, mutually respectful sovereign individuals would... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
• "...a mass of people plagued by urgent needs and driven by aspirations - at times passionate but always vague and indeterminate - to a better life, and on the other individuals and parties who have a specific view of the future and of the means to attain it..."
• "The anarchists within the unions should strive to ensure that they remain open to all workers of whatever opinion or party on the sole condition that there is solidarity in the struggle against the bosses. They should oppose the corporatist spirit and any attempt to monopolize labor or organization. They should prevent the Unions from becoming the tools of the politicians for electoral or other authoritarian ends; they should preach and practice direct action, decentralization, autonomy and free initiative. They should strive to help members learn how to participate directly in the life of the organization and to do without leaders and permanent officials. They must, in short, remain anarchists, remain always in close touch with anarchists and remember that the workers' organization is not the end but just one of the means, however important, of preparing the way for the achievement of anarchism."
• "A Union is set up to defend the day to day interests of the workers and to improve their conditions as much as possible before they can be in any position to make the revolution and by it change today's wage-earners into free workers, freely associating for the benefit of all."
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
(1756 - 1836) ~ Respected Anarchist Philosopher and Sociologist of the Enlightenment Era : His most famous work, An Inquiry concerning Political Justice, appeared in 1793, inspired to some extent by the political turbulence and fundamental restructuring of governmental institutions underway in France. Godwin's belief is that governments are fundamentally inimical to the integrity of the human beings living under their strictures... (From : University of Pennsylvania Bio.)
• "Fickleness and instability, your lordship will please to observe, are of the very essence of a real statesman." (From : "Instructions to a Statesman," by William Godwin.)
• "Courts are so encumbered and hedged in with ceremony, that the members of them are always prone to imagine that the form is more essential and indispensable, than the substance." (From : "Instructions to a Statesman," by William Godwin.)
• "Anarchy and darkness will be the original appearance. But light shall spring out of the noon of night; harmony and order shall succeed the chaos." (From : "Instructions to a Statesman," by William Godwin.)
(1905 - 1994) ~ Anarchist Leader of the FAI during the Spanish Civil War : Montseny served as one of the FAI's prominent activists and in November of 1936, she became the first woman in Spanish history to serve as the Minister of Health. One of her most controversial accomplishments in this position was the legalization of abortion... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "...triumph over fascism alone is worth the sacrifice of our lives." (From : "Militant Anarchism and the Reality in Spain," by ....)
• "That is why a fascist victory is impossible. Because it must not be forgotten that this is not only a civil war-a social war is also being waged. It is the war of the common people against the rich, against the militarists, against the politicians-all of whom were responsible for the misery and poverty of the proletariat." (From : "Militant Anarchism and the Reality in Spain," by ....)
• "We need no messiah and no sterile conception of a god menacing us with hell and purgatory. Love, as the basis of life will bind us together." (From : "Militant Anarchism and the Reality in Spain," by ....)
(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.)
• "...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.)
• "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.)
• "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.)
(1830 - 1905) ~ Leader of Paris Commune Partisans and Radical Anarchist Feminist : Michel was a schoolteacher and active in the Paris Commune and the French Revolution of the 1870's -- both in looking after the wounded and fighting. She was transported to New Caledonia, but returned to France after the Communards were granted amnesty. She was much admired among the worker's movement. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "One of the future revenges for the murder of Paris will be that of revealing the customary infamous betrayals of military reaction." (From : "Memories of the Commune," by Louise Michel.)
• "...as I advanced in the tale I came to love reliving this time of struggle for freedom, which was my true existence, and I love losing myself in the memory of this." (From : "Memories of the Commune," by Louise Michel.)
• "Now we go quiet; the fight has begun. There is a hill and I shout as I run forward: To Versailles! To Versailles! Razoua tosses me his sword to rally the men. We shake hands at the top; the sky is on fire, and no one has been wounded." (From : "Memories of the Commune," by Louise Michel.)
(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 immediately 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.)