Masses (March 1912). Reprinted in The Radical Will, 352–354. No incident of recent years has served to bring out so much crude thinking among supposedly educated men as the now happily ended McNamara case. A wave of hysterical passion for law and order seems suddenly to have swept over the land, a passion which one would like to believe is entirely sincere and ready to carry itself through to logical conclusions. It looks a little too much like a sudden scare, a purely physical timidity on the part of the comfortable classes, to be quite convincing. The gallant and well-worn phrase, law and order, has been worked overtime to conceal a very real fear on the part of the dominant classes for their lives and property. The law and order wh... (From : fair-use.org.)
This article appears in Anarchy Archives with the permission of the author and is the introduction to The Philosophy of Social Ecology: Essays on Dialectical Naturalism, 2nd ed. revised (Montreal: Black Rose Books, 1995). A Philosophical Naturalism by Murray Bookchin What is nature? What is humanity's place in nature? And what is the relationship of society to the natural world? In an era of ecological breakdown, answering these questions has become of momentous importance for our everyday lives and for the future that we and other life-forms face. They are not abstract philosophical questions that should be relegated to a remote, airy world of metaphysical speculation. Nor can we answer them in an offhand way, with poetic metaphors or unth... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
CHAPTER V KNOWLEDGE BY ACQUAINTANCE AND KNOWLEDGE BY DESCRIPTION IN the preceding chapter we saw that there are two sorts of knowledge: knowledge of things, and knowledge of truths. In this chapter we shall be concerned exclusively with knowledge of things, of which in turn we shall have to distinguish two kinds. Knowledge of things, when it is of the kind we call knowledge by acquaintance, is essentially simpler than any knowledge of truths, and logically independent of knowledge of truths, though it would be rash to assume that human beings ever, in fact, have acquaintance with things without at the same time knowing some truth about them. Knowledge of things by description, on the contrary, always involves, as we shall find in the course of the present chapter, some knowledge of truths as its source and ground. But first of all we must make dear what we mean by 'acquaintance' and what we mean by 'description'.
We would call the attention of those among our readers who know Italian, to the above work, just published by our comrade S. Merlino. It is a most useful text-book of Anarchist Socialism, and we hope it may shortly make its appearance in English dress. The author begins by pointing out that our present economic system, in spite of so-called free competition, and other delusive appearances of freedom, is founded upon monopoly. By monopoly he understands the individual appropriation of the wealth of the community by persons who make use of this property to obtain for themselves the fruits of other people's labor. The first part of the book describes the growth of this monopoly ; the second consists of an examination of the doctrines of the ec... (From : AnarchyArchives.)
In our last paper we noted the change in men's ideas of the world and their own place in it, which has resulted from the increased mental activity of the last four hundred years; and we saw how the splendid conquests of human thinking-power have led to excessive and superstitious reverence for that one faculty. Excessive, because it contemptuously excludes the rest (the greater part) of men's nature; superstitious, because it erects reason into a sort of internal Mumbo Jumbo--mysteriously capable of comprehending, molding, and controlling the will, feeling and action of the whole human being and the whole society. But what, we may be asked, have the extravagant theories of a few philosophers and scientists to do with the common life of ever... (From : AnarchyArchives.)