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THE CONQUEST OF BREAD by P. Kropotkin PREFACE ONE of the current objections to Communism and Socialism altogether, is that the idea is so old, and yet it could never be realized. Schemes of ideal States haunted the thinkers of Ancient Greece; later on, the early Christians joined in communist groups; centuries later, large communist brotherhoods came into existence during the Reform movement. Then, the same ideals were revived during the great English and French Revolutions; and finally, quite lately, in 1848, a revolution, inspired to a great extent with Socialist ideals, took place in France. "And yet, you see," we are told, "how far away is still the realization of your schemes. Don't you think that there is some fundamental error in your understanding of human nature and its needs?" At first sight this objection seems very serious. However, the moment we consider human history m...
On everything that lives, if one looks searchingly, is limned the shadow line of an idea --- an idea, dead or living, sometimes stronger when dead, with rigid, unswerving lines that mark the living embodiment with the stern immobile cast of the non-living. Daily we move among these unyielding shadows, less pierceable, more enduring than granite, with the blackness of ages in them, dominating living, changing bodies, with dead, unchanging souls. And we meet, also, living souls dominating dying bodies-living ideas regnant over decay and death. Do not imagine that I speak of human life alone. The stamp of persistent or of shifting Will is visible in the grass-blade rooted in its clod of earth, as in the gossamer web of being that floats and sw... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
TO THE EDITOR OF "FREEDOM." Many thanks for the copy of Freedom sent to me the other week. I hope it will be the means of snapping some of the links in the chain that makes us the slaves of landlords, capitalists, and others who live out of the labors of the workers everywhere. Why we should be for ever producing wealth and yet not have the power of enjoying it ourselves, is more than I can understand. The staple trade of this village is shoe work, and most of that of a common sort. One manufacturer resides in the place; the others live at a distance. We are somewhere in the position of the Irish. The land is claimed by absentee landlords, who must have their rent for doing nothing live There are over two thousand acres of land in the paris... (From : AnarchyArchives.)
Editor's Note and Foreword Excerpted from the book; Individual Liberty: Selections From the Writings of Benjamin R. Tucker Vanguard Press, New York, 1926 Kraus Reprint Co., Millwood, NY, 1973. PUBLISHER'S NOTE C.L.S., the editor and compiler of this book, has known Benjamin R. Tucker personally since 1891, having entered his employ at that time in the mechanical department of Liberty, Mr. Tucker's journal for the exposition of Individualist Anarchism. After that time and until the final suspension of publication of Liberty, C.L.S. contributed many articles to the columns of that periodical, both signed and unsigned, usually in the editorial department. For a considerable period he had complete editorial charge, during Mr. Tucker's absence. Thus the present work has been performed by one who has entire familiarity with Liberty's philosophy and who perha...
On Individualism and the Anarchist Movement in France
Viola, Bromley, Kent March 5, 1902 My dear friend, I read your letter with a great deal of personal and general interest, and I would like to be able to answer it at length, as well as to discuss one of its essential points, individualism. Maybe someday I will write a few articles on individualism. At any rate, I will try to answer you now without entering into lengthy details. I will start with the central point of your letter, in which you ask why youth is not the same now as it was in 1890-94. According to you, it is because at the time, we were affected by the libertarian movement in art and literature and so forth. Well, we still are. The only difference is that it is they who no longer want us, and that, after having given us several ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
Denver is not unlike a prison. Its inhabitants, too, have been sent there "to do time." That which makes the position of the prisoner preferable, is the consolation that the State will feed him and that some day his time will expire. The majority of Denverites have no such cheerful outlook, Although arriving there with hopes of a speedy return, it's usually imprisonment for life. We all know the paralyzing effect of the daily grind for existence, even for most of us who can boast an average physique. How much more paralyzing must it be for those who go to Denver as a last resort to rescue life from its downward path? Under such conditions and in such an atmosphere people are not interested in abstract ideas. "To hell with Bebel's speech," s... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
A NEW BANKING SYSTEM THE NEEDFUL CAPITAL FOR REBUILDING THE BURNT DISTRICT By LYSADNER SPOONER. BOSTON: SOLD BY A. WILLIAMS & CO. 135 WASHINGTON SREET 1873 Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1873, By LYSANDER SPOONER, In the office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington. Printed by WARREN RICHARDSON, 112 Washington St. C O N T E N T S. CHAPTER I. A New Banking System CHAPTER II. Specie Payments CHAPTER III. No Inflation Prices CHAPTER IV. Security of the System CHAPTER V. The System as a Credit System CHAPTER VI. Amount of Currency Needed CHAPTER VII. Importance of the System to Massachusetts, CHAPTER VIII. The True Character of the "National" System CHAPTER IX. Amasa Walker's Opinion of the Author's System The... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
The question frequently arises in discussions: "But if you got an anarchist state of society to-morrow, how would you maintain it? and even if it did continue for a certain time, would not, afterwards, when the first force of revolutionary sentiment and vigilance had spent itself, the old abuses gradually and insidiously come to reestablish themselves, as they came to be established in the first instance?" The question is worth answering, especially the latter portion of it. The only way in which a state of Anarchy can be obtained is for each man who is oppressed to act as if he were at liberty, in defiance of all authority to the contrary, and evading or overcoming by force by which he is opposed or pursued. The liberty of each is created ... (From : AnarchyArchives.)
Some twenty-one years ago I heard the first great Anarchist speaker--the inimitable John Most. It seemed to me then, and for many years after, that the spoken word hurled forth among the masses with such wonderful eloquence, such enthusiasm and fire, could never be erased from the human mind and soul. How could any one of all the multitudes who flocked to Most's meetings escape his prophetic voice! Surely they had but to hear him to throw off their old beliefs, and see the truth and beauty of Anarchism! My one great longing then was to be able to speak with the tongue of John Most,--that I, too, might thus reach the masses. Oh, for the naivety of Youth's enthusiasm! It is the time when the hardest thing seems but child's play. It is the onl... (From : Anarchy Archives.)
FREEDOM PAMPHLETS. No. 1. New Edition. 1920. I. REPRESENTATIVE GOVERNMENT AND WAGES. In their plan for the reconstruction of society, the Collectivists commit, in our opinion, a double error. Whilst speaking of the abolition of the rule of capital, they wish, nevertheless, to maintain two institutions which form the very basis of that rule, namely, representative government and the wage system. As for representative government, it remains absolutely incomprehensible to us how intelligent men (and they are not wanting among the Collectivists) can continue to be the partisans of national and municipal parliaments, after all the lessons on this subject bestowed on us by history, whether in England or in France, in Germany, Switzerland or the U... (From : Anarchy Archives.)