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Published Essays and Pamphlets Alexander Berkman's Last Days by Emma Goldman [Published in The Vanguard (New York), Aug.-Sept. 1936.] St. Tropez July 12th, 1936 It is only two weeks since our beloved comrade Alexander Berkman passed away. Yet it seems an eternity to me. The blow his untimely death has struck me has left me completely shattered. I find it difficult to collect my thoughts. But I feel sure you will want to know all about Sasha's end. For have you not loved him all through the years? Sasha left a note which we found after we returned from his last resting place. It reads: "I don't want to live a sick man. Dependent. Forgive me Emmie darling. And you too Emma. Love to All. Help Emmie." signed, Sasha. I have two letters from comr... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
The text is from my copy of Alexander Berkman, The Bolshevik Myth, New York: Boni and Liveright, 1925. Page numbers are in the source code. CHAPTER XXIV YOSSIF THE EMIGRANT A short, slender man of thirty, with lustrous dark eyes set wide apart, and a face of peculiar sadness. The expression of his eyes still haunts me: now mournful, now irate, they reflect all the tragedy of his Jewish descent. His smile speaks the kindliness of a heart that has suffered and learned to understand. The thought kept running through my mind, as he was relating his experiences in the Revolution, that it was his patient, winsome smile which had conquered the brutality of his persecutors. I had known him in America, him and his friend Lea, a sweet-faced girl of unusual self-control and determination. Both had for years been active in the radical movement in the U...
The greatest excitement has prevailed in Russia for the last few weeks since it became known that representatives of the Zemstvos of thirty-four provinces of the Empire were going to meet at St. Petersburg in order to discuss the necessary reforms in the general political organization of the country. The very fact that such an authorization had been granted was equivalent to an invitation to discuss a scheme of a Constitution; and so it was understood everywhere. When the Zemstvo delegates were leaving their respective provincial towns they were sent off by groups of enthusiastic friends, whose parting words were: 'Return with a Constitution!' Their original intention was to make of their conference a solemn official gathering which would s... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
This manuscript is part of the International Institute for Social History's Alexander Berkman archive and appears in Anarchy Archives with ISSH's permission. EARLY DAYS: Life at home and school in St. Petersburg. My bourgeois father and aristocratic mother. Jews and gentiles. I question my father about the Turkish prisoners of war begging alms in the streets. OUR FAMILY SKELETON: Strange rumors about my mother and her brother Maxim. Echoes of the Polish rebellion of 1863. I hear of the dreaded Nihilists and revolution. A TERRIFIED HOUSEHOLD: A bomb explodes as I recite my lesson in school. The assassination of Czar Alexander II. Secret groups in our class. Police search our house. Uncle Maxim is arrested for conspiring against the Czar's Li... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
Mr. W. H. S. Alexander has been good enough to present the English people with the necessary funds to establish a National Portrait Gallery in which the public will be able occasionally to see the counterfeit presentiments of the living and dead mediocrities who have honored this country by being born in it. By occasionally we mean about four times a year, on bank holidays, for of course the show will not be on view on Sundays and will probably be closed pretty early in the evenings, after the fashion of the National Picture Gallery. Mr. Alexander is the son of a solicitor who "made" the one hundred thousand pounds which constitute the gift, and a good deal more, by speculating in house property and land in the metropolitan suburbs. So that... (From : AnarchyArchives.)
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 rights. The Carnegie Company, on the other hand, was a powerful corporation, known as a hard master. It was particularly significant that Andrew Carnegie, its president, had temporarily turned over the entire management to the company chairman, Henry Clay Frick, a man known for his enmity to labor. Fric... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
The last students' disturbances in Russia were quite different from all the disturbances which have taken place in the Russian universities for the last forty years. They began, as all students' movements begin, with an insignificant incident, which concerned the students alone; but, owing to a series of circumstances quite peculiar to Russia, they took, all of a sudden, a political complexion ; and in this respect they acquired such a significance that they will now count in the history of the constitutional movement in Russia as an important milestone. Consequently it is impossible to speak of the last events without going deeper than their surface that is, without touching upon the general problem of education in Russia, and without men... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
Berkman, Alexander Prison Memoirs of an Anarchist, Mother Earth Press. Chapter 25 How Shall the Depths Cry? I THE CHANGE OF seasons varies the tone of the prison. A cheerier atmosphere pervades the shops and the cell-house in the summer. The block is airier and lighter; the guards relax their stern look, in anticipation of their vacations; the men hopefully count the hours till their approaching freedom, and the gates open daily to release some one going back to the world. But heavy gloom broods over the prison in winter. The windows are closed and nailed; the vitiated air, artificially heated, is suffocating with dryness. Smoke darkens the shops, and the cells are in constant dusk. Tasks grow heavier, the punishments more severe. The officers look sullen; the men are morose and discontented. The ravings of the insane become wilder, suicides more frequent; despair and hopelessness oppress e...
Last month's attempt to celebrate the anniversary of the execution of Alexander II. by that of his son and successor has revealed to all Europe the depth of the surging discontent now stirring among the people of Russia; the burning shame and indignation with which they see themselves crushed beneath a system of government which would have disgraced the Dark Ages. As Leroy-Beaulieu has pointed out, Russia has been the scapegoat of Western Europe. Her people have borne the brunt of the successive tides of invasion by the savage and cruel hordes of Asia; by her brave resistance she has glutted their fury, by her industry she has satiated their greed. Thus Teuton and Kelt have been left the freer to develop their social life at the cost of the... (From : AnarchyArchives.)