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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.)
When we cast a broad glance upon the history of mankind, we see one distinctive feature pervading it from the remotest antiquity up to our own times. On the one aide there are the masses toiling, laboring creating wealth by the labor of their hands, and asking for nothing else -but peace, liberty, and equality among themselves. And on the other side there is a minority, sometimes of foreign conquerors, and sometimes natives of the country itself, who continually aim dominating the masses, at freely enjoying the fruits of their labor, and at rendering their own rule everlasting by means of Law and Force, by an appropriate education, and religious teachings. All the history of mankind is nothing but that struggle between the two hostile force... (From : AnarchyArchives.)
This poem by Nestor Makhno was written when he was 23 years old and had been in prison for two years for "illegal subversive association." Summons. Let us rise in revolt, brethren, and with us the people Beneath the black flag of Anarchy will revolt. We will surge boldly forward, under the fire of enemy bullets in the battle for faith in libertarian communism, Our just regime. We shall cast down all thrones and bring low the power of Capital. We will seize the gold and purple scepter And pay no more honor to anything. Through savage struggle We shall rid ourselves of the State and its laws. We have suffered long under the yoke Of chains, prisons and teeming gangs of executioners. The time has come to rise in rebellion and close ranks. Forwa... (From : LibCom.org.)