Browsing Anarchism : Anarchist and Anti-Authoritarianism

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by Nestor Makhno
To be transmitted by telegraph, telephone, or post to all villages, townships, districts, and provinces of the Ukraine. To be read in village assemblies, factories, and workshops. Brother toilers! The Revolutionary, Insurgent Army of the Ukraine (Makhnovists) was called into being as a protest against the oppression of workers and peasants by the bourgeois-landlord authorities on one side and the Bolshevik-Communist dictatorship on the other. Setting itself the goal to fight for the complete liberation of the toilers of the Ukraine from the yoke of this or that power and to create a true soviet socialist order, the Insurgent Army of Makhnovists has fought persistently on several fronts to achieve these objectives and at the present time to finish the struggle against Denikin's army, liberating district after district from every coercive power and every coercive organization. Many peasants and workers have raised the question:... (From :

by Aragorn!, 2007
We would like our relationship with capitalism to be simple; we are against it. But behind the simplicity of taking a firm stance is the tragedy of the anarchist archetype. A fixed stance against capitalism, hierarchy, god, the state, oppression, racism, sexism, homophobia (and more); demonstrating curiosity only to find new things to say “no” to. If anarchism is going to continue being interesting, relevant, or challenging into this century, then our reactionary pose has to be confronted. Let’s establish terms. Let us enclose our understanding of capitalism within an anarchist framework rather than a dictionary definition or being enclosed within it ourselves. Up till now anarchists have defined themselves along the lines of “people who are against all systems of authority” with the systems listed (usually in about this order) being the state, capitalism, the church, civilization, patriarchy, racism, homophobia,... (From :

by Émile Armand, 1910
I. As I write these lines, election season is in full swing. The walls are plastered with posters of every color where people claim to be of every flag, every “color” of opinion. Who doesn’t have his party, his program, his profession of faith? Who is not either a socialist, a radical, a progressive, a liberal, or a “proportionalist” — the newest fad? This abnegation of the self is the great malady of the century. One belongs to an association, a union, a party; one shares the opinions, the convictions, the rule of conduct of another. One is led, a follower, a disciple, a slave, never oneself. It’s true that this is less taxing. To belong to a party, adopting someone else’s program, adjusting to a collective line of conduct, is to avoid thinking, reflecting, creating one’s own ideas. It is to dispense with acting by oneself. It is the triumph of the famous theory of the “least effort,&rdquo... (From :

by Aragorn!, 2009
Inside every cynical person, there is a disappointed idealist. — G. Carlin If publishing is defined as the practice of putting ink onto paper and then getting that into the hands of people, then publishing — and anarchist publishing in particular — is on the ropes. While there are arguably more anarchist books being published than at any time in history, readership is shrinking. Anarchist publications, magazines, newspapers, and journals, are nearly universally diminished. Infrequent publishing schedules and decreased print runs indicate that the time for print may be drawing to a close for anarchist periodicals. The counter to this statement is that there has been a corresponding, if not larger, rise in anarchist publishing on the Internet. But is this actually the case? It depends on what you mean by publishing. On, the largest and longest-running anarchist publi... (From :

~ The Anarchist and Syndicalist Revolution of 1936, by Murray Bookchin, 1994
Preface These essays are less an analysis of the Spanish Revolution and Civil War of 1936-39 than an evocation of the greatest proletarian and peasant revolution to occur over the past two centuries. Although they contain a general overview and evaluation of the Anarchist and Anarchosyndicalist movements (the two should be clearly distinguished) in the three-year struggle at the end of the 1930s, they are not intended to be a full account of those complex events. It is no exaggeration to say that the Spanish Revolution was the farthest-reaching movement that the Left ever produced, for reasons the essays that follow will make clear. The Spanish proletariat and peasantry, led largely by Anarchist militants whose names will never be known to us, strained the limits of what we in the 1930s called "proletarian socialism" and went appreciably beyond them. Far more than the leaders of the Anarchosyndicalist National Confederation of Labor and the Iberian Anarchist...

by Mikhail Bakunin, 1869
First Letter Friends and Brothers, I feel the need, before leaving your mountains, to express to you once again in writing my profound gratitude for the fraternal reception you have accorded me. Is it not a wonderful thing that a man, a Russian, a one-time noble, completely unknown to you when he arrived here, found himself surrounded by hundreds of friends almost the very moment that he set foot in your country? Such miracles no longer happen these days, except at the hands of the International Workingmen’s Association, and that for one simple reason: the International alone represents today the historical life, the creative power of the social and political future. Those who are united by a living body of thought, by a will and a great passion held in common, are truly brothers, even if they do not realize it themselves. There was a time when the bourgeoisie, endowed with the same power of life and exclusively constitutin... (From :

by Élisée Reclus, 1901
This letter was translated by John Clark and appears in Anarchy Archives with his permission To the editors of la Huelga General in Barcelona. Brussels, Dec. 4, 1901. Corresp. III:238-240. Dear comrades, We have an ingrained habit of exaggerating both our strengths and our weakness. During revolutionary periods, it seems that our most minor actions have incalculably great consequences. On the other hand, during times of stagnation, though we may be totally dedicated to our work, our entire lives seem barren and useless, and we may even feel swept away by the winds of reaction. What then should we do to maintain our intellectual vigor, our moral energy, and our faith in the good fight? You come to me hoping to draw on my long experience of people and things. So, as an elderly person I give you the following advice: Do not quarrel or deal in personalities. Listen to other people's arguments... (From : Anarchy Archives.)

by Fernando Tarrida del Mármol, 1897
The Spanish government, by means of terror, falsehoods, and slanders hopes to be able to hide the crimes it doesn’t cease to commit both in the peninsula and in its unfortunate colonies. It is in error if it thinks it can do this, and the hour of expiation is not far off. Even with the support of the clergy and the sinister “Association of Fathers of Families” it will suffice that light be shined and everything will collapse with a thundering noise. I do not claim to attack Spain, but rather those who dishonor it. On the subject of my latest articles a few Spanish newspapers affirmed – with the good intentions that one can imagine – that I insulted my fatherland. On the contrary, I find that it is they who insult it, since they appear to identify it with the wretches I unmasked. Spain is only a victim; those who rule its destiny are its executioners; those who support these executioners are their accomplices. Nor do I clai... (From :

by Nestor Makhno, 1927
Jewish citizens! In my first "Appeal to Jews", published in the French libertarian newspaper, Le Libertaire, I asked Jews in general, which is to say the bourgeois and the socialist ones as well as the 'anarchist' ones like Yanovsky, who have all spoken of me as a pogromist against Jews and labeled as anti-Semitic the liberation movement of the Ukrainian peasants and workers of which I was the leader, to detail to me the specific facts instead of blathering vacuously away: just where and just when did I or the aforementioned movement perpetrate such acts? I had expected that Jews in general would answer my "Appeal" after the manner of people eager to disclose to the civilized world the truth about these blackguards responsible for the massacres of Jews in the Ukraine, or indeed that they might attempt to base their shameful anecdotes about me and the Makhnovist movement upon fairly authentic data in that they involve me in them and peddl... (From :

by Anselme Bellegarrigue, 1848
I am told that it is for my own good that I am governed. Now, since I give my money to be governed, it follows that it is for my own good that I give that money. This is possible, but it nevertheless deserves verification. Moreover, it is a fact that no one may be more familiar than me with the means of making myself happy. I still find it strange, incomprehensible, anti-natural, and extra-human, to devote oneself to the happiness of people that one does not know, and I declare that I have not the honor of being known by the men who govern me. It is therefore fair to say that, from my point of view, they are really too kind, and, in the end, a little indiscreet to preoccupy themselves so much with my felicity, but, more importantly, there is no evidence that I am unable to pursue this felicity myself. I would add that devotion involves disinterestedness, and that one does not have a right to impose caring at... (From :

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