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 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 always insisted that the Anarchist aim and methods must harmonize, or the aim would never be achieved. Yet here I am trying to explain the action of our Spanish comrades to the European opponents, and the criticism of the latter to the comrades of the CNT-FAI. In other words, after a lifetime of an extreme left posi... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
CONTROVERSY: ANARCHISTS IN THE SPANISH REVOLUTION by Sam Dolgoff In 1974, or early 1975, I reviewed in the English anarchist paper Freedom a book by Carlos Semprun Maura, Revolution and Counter-Revolution in Catalonia (French edition). In my review I criticized both Semprun Maura and Vernon Richards' book Lessons of the Spanish Revolution for presenting a distorted, over-simplified interpretation of events- a scenario. This provoked a heated rejoinder from Richards (three or four articles in Freedom). Over forty years after the tragic defeat of the Spanish Revolution - 1936 to 1939 - the question of anarchist participation in the Republican government and the role of anarchists in a revolution is a fundamental problem still debated- still r... (From : Flag.Blackened.net.)
(1901 - 1980) ~ FAI Labor Unionist and Anti-Fascist Militant During the Spanish Civil War : ...a native of Catalonia and member of the Catalan Regional Committee of the C.N.T. or National Labor Federation, where he was a close associate of Buenaventura Durruti. He led a group in battle against the military uprising of July 1936 in Barcelona, occupying the women's prison and releasing all its prisoners. (From : Blood of Spain Bio.)
• "If these syndicates are of an anarchist orientation and their militants have been formed by an anarchist moral then, to presuppose that they'll act the same as if they were Marxist, for example, is as good as saying that anarchism and Marxism are fundamentally the same ideology, being as they produce the same fruit. I don't accept such simplifications." (From : "Wrong Steps: Errors in the Spanish Revolution," b....)
• "Without this demonstration that we can build Libertarian Socialism, the future will continue to belong to the sort of politics that came out of the French Revolution -- with many political parties to begin with, and just one at the end." (From : "Wrong Steps: Errors in the Spanish Revolution," b....)
• "We had no use for anything connected to the past, a past which had in some ways sunk already, but which would still make inexhaustible attempts to reassert itself. All revolutions carry with them a counter revolution. A Revolution is a forward murch from ac ertain point, whereas counter revolution is a return to that point, or in some cases to a point that is further back." (From : "Wrong Steps: Errors in the Spanish Revolution," b....)
On my first visit to Spain in September 1936, nothing surprised me so much as the amount of political freedom I found everywhere. True it did not extend to fascists; but outside of these deliberate enemies of the revolution and the emancipation of the workers in Spain, everyone of the anti-fascist front enjoyed political freedom which hardly existed in any of the so called European democracies. The one party that made the utmost use of this was the PSUC, the Stalinist party in revolutionary Spain. Their radio and loudspeakers filled the air. Their daily marches in military formation with their flags waving were flaunted in everybody’s face. They seemed to take a special pleasure in marching past the house of the Regional Committee as ... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
The Anarchist and Syndicalist Revolution of 1936Preface 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...