Anarchism : Anarchist and Anti-Authoritarianism
Revolt Library >> Anarchism
Want to know about Anarchism as a theory and a movement throughout history and up to the present? Then you've found the right place.
Whether it is Collectivist Anarchism or Individualist Anarchism, Mutualist Anarchism or Communist Anarchism, every type is given its bit of room for expression here.
This archive contains 3,088 texts, with 10,682,122 words or 66,223,748 characters.
1897 ~ Why I Am an Anarchist, by Voltairine De Cleyre
It was suggested to me by those who were the means of securing me this opportunity of addressing you, that probably the most easy and natural way for me to explain Anarchism would be for me to give the reasons why I myself am an Anarchist. I am not sure that they were altogether right in the matter, because in giving the reasons why I am an Anarchist, I may perhaps infuse too much of my own personality into the subject, giving reasons sufficient unto myself, but which cool reflection might convince me were not particularly striking as reasons why other people should be Anarchists, which is, after all, the object of public speaking on this question. Nevertheless, I have been guided by their judgment, thinking they are perhaps right in this, that one is apt to put much more feeling and freedom into personal reasons than in pure generalizations. The question “Why I am an Anarchist” I could very summarily answer with “because I cann... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
1893 ~ Some Nihilists I Have Met, by Voltairine De Cleyre
An introduction by Robert P. Helms, Philadelphia, May 2013 Voltairine de Cleyre (1866-1912) has drawn plenty of well-deserved attention in recent years by historians of anarchism, of feminism, sex radicalism, and atheism. My research for a book on the early anarchists of Philadelphia has caused me to understand ever more clearly why, during her life, she was considered an intellectual of very high stature, why she was respected by social reformers of many varieties for her body-and-soul dedication to helping and educating the poor, and why she was loved or even revered by fellow anarchists. I spotted a magazine review in the Brooklyn Eagle of Sept. 26, 1893 (p. 4). The October issue of the short-lived Worthington's Illustrated Monthly Magazine was described in summary form, and mid-way through, it read, "'Some Nihilists I have Met' is an interesting paper by Voltairine de Cleyre, who exhibits a specimen of that s... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
1907 ~ McKinley's Assassination from the Anarchist Standpoint, by Voltairine De Cleyre
Six years have passed since William McKinley met his doom at Buffalo and the return stroke of justice took the life of his slayer, Leon Czolgosz. The wild rage that stormed through the brains of the people, following that revolver shot, turning them into temporary madmen, incapable of seeing, hearing, or thinking correctly, has spent itself. Figures are beginning to appear in their true relative proportions, and there is some likelihood that sane words will be sanely listened to. Instead of the wild and savage threats, “Brand the Anarchists with hot iron,” “Boil in oil,” “Hang to the first lamp-post,” “Scourge and shackle,” “Deport to a desert island,” which were the stock phrases during the first few weeks following the tragedy, and were but the froth of the upheaved primitive barbarity of civilized men, torn loose and raging like an unreasoning beast, we now hear an occasional serious inquiry: “But what h... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
1893 ~ A Glance at Communism, by Voltairine De Cleyre
“Cast thy bread upon the waters, Find it after many days.” Two years ago, in a little uptown parlor, the home of a Philadelphia weaver, a group of inquirers after truth were wont to assemble bi-weekly for the discussion of “Communism vs. Individualism.” There were generally present some fifteen Communists and five or six Individualists. Let it be here admitted that while all were earnestly seeking truth, each side was pretty thoroughly convinced that the other was searching in the wrong direction, and as near as I am able to ascertain we are all of the same opinion still. However, in the course of a year some crumbs of the bread floated into sight in the shape of a dialogue presenting the substance of those discussions, which appeared in the TWENTIETH CENTURY. Many more days again passed, and now a new fragment, in the shape of a criticism of the dialogue by M. Zametkin in the “People” of Jul... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
1907 ~ Events Are the True Schoolmasters, by Voltairine De Cleyre
I count it as one of the best fortunes of my life that in my early days as an anarchist it was my privilege to know Dyer D. Lum. These thirteen years he is in his grave, and yet whenever editors and contributors of anarchist journals fall to denouncing the actions of the unwise, the ebullitions of the mass, I hear his voice, as yesterday, saying in his short, brusque way: “Events are the true schoolmasters.” There was in his day, as there is now, a certain percentage of propagandists who think that they possess the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth (a perhaps enviable condition of mind, but certainly an intolerant one). They appear to think that by the application of certain abstract principles they have been able to chalk-line the course of progress, and that if it be strictly adhered to an unquestionable triumph of these principles lies straight ahead. They are essentially reasonable, cool persons, somewhat over-impressed with t... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
From Correspondance de Michel Bakounine, published and prefaced by Michel Dragmanov, 1896, Paris, France, pages 121-124. Letter from Bakunin to Herzen and Ogareff October 3, 1861 San Francisco My dear friends, I was able to escape Siberia and after having traveled for a long time on the Amour and through the coasts and straits of Tartarie, in crossing Japan, I have finally arrived in San Francisco. But during this trip my savings, very modest as they were, have been completely exhausted and if I had not stumbled across a generous man who willingly loaned me 250 dollars to take the train from New York, I would have found myself in a terrible predicament. You, my friends, are too far away, and in this particular city I know no one. I hope to arrive in New York on November 6. If I have calculated correctly, this letter should reach you on the 15th, therefore I would be able to receive your response at the end of this month. I hope... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
I recently happened to come across a French pamphlet (in Italy today , as is known, the non-fascist press cannot freely circulate), with the title 'Organizational Platform of the General Union of Anarchists (Project)'. This is a project for anarchist organization published under the name of a 'Group of Russian Anarchists Abroad' and it seems to be directed particularly at Russian comrades. But it deals with questions of equal interest to all anarchists; and it is, clear, including the language in which it is written, that it seeks the support of comrades worldwide. In any case it is worth examining, for the Russians as for everyone, whether the proposal put forward is in keeping with anarchist principles and whether implementation would truly serve the cause of anarchism. The intentions of the comrades are excellent. They rightly lament the fact that until now the anarchists have not had an influence on political and social events in proportion t... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
Translated from the French by Robert Helms "Avant L'Enterrement" first appeared in the Paris newspaper Gil Blas on April 19, 1887 Mr. Poivret got down from his wagon in front of the shop owned by his son-in-law Pierre Gasselin, tied the horse to a thick iron ring and, after three times checking the tightness of the tether's knot, he entered the butcher shop cracking his horse-whip. "Anyone there?" he yelled. A dog, sleeping with its body stretched across a sunny patch of floor, got up with a low groan and then laid itself out a little farther out of the way. The store was deserted, and since it was Thursday, the meat rack was pretty close to empty. A quarter of nearly black beef lay on the block, covered with flies, and a lamb's heart, split down the middle, was hanging from the ceiling on one of the movable hooks. In a corner, in the bottom of a copper basin, some bloody bones and heaps of yellowing gre... (From : Mid-Atlantic Infoshop.)
1840 ~ An Inquiry into the Principle of Right and of Government
Chapter IV. That Property Is Impossible. The last resort of proprietors, — the overwhelming argument whose invincible potency reassures them, — is that, in their opinion, equality of conditions is impossible. “Equality of conditions is a chimera,” they cry with a knowing air; “distribute wealth equally to-day — to-morrow this equality will have vanished.” To this hackneyed objection, which they repeat everywhere with the most marvelous assurance, they never fail to add the following comment, as a sort of Glory be to the Father: “If all men were equal, nobody would work.” This anthem is sung with variations. “If all were masters, nobody would obey.” “If nobody were rich, who would employ the poor?” And, “If nobody were poor, who would labor for the rich?” But let us have done with invective — w...
IRELAND The battering-ram has been idle on the Vandeleur estates because the police and military have been on duty for the Marquis Clanricarde at Woodford during September. The Woodford men and women have shown good fight and in more than one instance the defense fully equaled in determination and gallantry that made by the Somers household at Coolroe. At Tully's house emergency-men, battering-ram, police with naked swords and gleaming bayonets, were hours before effecting an entrance. The garrison, fifteen in number, two of them women, were all more or less seriously wounded. Tully himself had to be carried out, having received severe internal injuries from the butt ends of muskets. He states that but for the intervention of the inspector, the police would have finished him as he lay on the ground. His sister had her teeth smashed in by a gallant "peeler" because she objected to his maltreating a calf. (From : AnarchyArchives.)
"None can judge with certainty who is right and who is wrong, who is nearest the truth, or which is the best way to achieve the greatest good for each and everyone. Freedom coupled with experience, is the only way of discovering the truth and what is best; and there can be no freedom if there is a denial of the freedom to err."
"...the agelong oppression of the masses by a small privileged group has always been the result of the inability of the oppressed to agree among themselves to organize with others for production, for enjoyment and for the possible needs of defense against whoever might wish to exploit and oppress them. Anarchism exists to remedy this state of affairs..."
"Insurrections will be necessary as long as there are power groups which use their material force to exact obedience from the masses. And it is only too clear that there will be many more insurrections before the people win that minimum of indispensable conditions for free and peaceful development, when humanity will be able to advance towards its noblest objectives without cruel struggles and useless suffering."
"In their [Capitalist] hands they have all the means of production; and thus they suppress not only the possibility of free experimentation in new ways of communal living, and the right of workers to live freely by their own efforts, but also the right to life itself; and they oblige whoever is not a boss to have to allow himself to be exploited and oppressed if he does not wish to die of hunger. They have police forces, a judiciary, and armies created for the express purpose of defending their privileges; and they persecute, imprison and massacre those who would want to abolish those privileges and who claim the means of life and liberty for everyone."
Image::1 The admission made in the debate on the Navy Estimates by the First Lord of the Admiralty, that our dockyard management is nothing better than a gigantic job, somewhat tarnishes the glory of the brilliant naval review, for which the workers had to pay last month. No sooner is one government department officially whitewashed than another stands revealed as a den of uncleanness. * * * The recently constructed Metropolitan Board of Works doe...
Freedom: March 1893, p14 Advice to Those About to Emigrate Image::1 In these days when Home Colonization is seriously discussed, and is even tried, in England as an outlet for the populations of our congested towns, the following letters will be of much interest to our readers. A comrade in New South Wales, writing to Kropotkin for suggestions and advice, says: "As you are probably aware, the Labor movement in Australia has advanced tremendously during th...
This article appears courtesy of Emma Goldman Papers, Manuscripts and Archives Division, The New York Public Library, Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundations Address to the International Working Men's Association Congress by Emma Goldman Image::1 Life imposes strange situations on all of us. For forty-eight years I was considered an extremist in our ranks. One who refused to compromise our ideas or tactics for any purpose whatsoever--one who alw...
Image::1 Science is making tremendous progress in this century, but instead of science being the means of benefiting the people in every respect, it is used as a medium for inflicting misery and hardship upon those who an doomed to labor like slaves for a precarious existence. The inventions of science only give greater facilities to the privileged classes for increasing their happiness at the expense of terrible sufferings among that class which labors to produce the means whereby happiness...
Image::1 On the shooting of Henry Clay Frick by Alexander Berkman From 'Living My Life'by Emma Goldman "It was May 1892. News from Pittsburg announced that trouble had broken out between the Carnegie Steel Company and its employes organized in the Amalgamated Association of Iron and Steel Workers. It was one of the biggest and most efficient labor bodies of the country, consisting mostly of Americans, men of decision and grit, who would assert their ri...