Revolt Library : Revolutionary Materials from the Past
Welcome to RevoltLib! Here you will find an archive of materials from the past that once helped people to abolish the state, fight capitalism, end sexism, demolish imperialism, and eliminate all forms of social domination. Information is power -- arm yourself!
This archive contains 4,860 texts, with 24,665,645 words or 152,839,044 characters.
A collection of historic materials detailing Anarchism, Libertarianism, and Anti-Authoritarianism. By understanding more about the past, we can better apply the principles we discover today.
"'But,' it is usually asked, 'What will there be instead of Governments?' There will be nothing. Something that has long been useless, and therefore superfluous and bad, will be abolished. An organ that, being unnecessary, has become harmful, will be abolished." -- Leo Tolstoy
The Debate at the 1907 International Anarchist Congress
Amédée Dunois: Anarchism and Organization It is not long since our comrades were almost unanimous in their clear hostility towards any idea of organization. The question we are dealing with today would, then, have raised endless protests from them, and its supporters would have been vehemently accused of a hidden agenda and authoritarianism. They were times when anarchists, isolated from each other and even more so from the working class, seemed to have lost all social feeling; in which anarchists, with their unceasing appeals for the spiritual liberation of the individual, were seen as the supreme manifestation of the old individualism of the great bourgeois theoreticians of the past. Individual actions and individual initiative were thought to suffice for everything; and they applauded [Ibsen’s play] “An Enemy of the People” when it declared that a man alone is the most powerful of all. But they did not t... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
The man is starving, but he may not pluck so much as a turnip to save his life. The wind cuts to the marrow of his bones, but out in the open he must he if he cannot purchase shelter. This is the lot of the modern proletariat reduced to destitution. It is the condition thousands of unemployed and penniless continually must face. This very day, in every " civilized" country, thousands will have gone without a meal. This very night thousands will shiver on park benches, or huddle themselves into a fitful sleep within some friendly doorway. A life no decent-minded man would wish his dog to lead. Even here we do not touch bottom. Not only must the man starve to-day; he must go on starving. This night he is shelterless, and for weeks and months he may have no roof to cover him. He may not say, "I will go to work and raise for myself the food without which I cannot live." He may not lay hands on the materials scattered all around him and build the modest cabi... (From : Google Books.)
A RUSSIAN PROPRIETOR and OTHER STORIES BY COUNT LYOF N. TOLSTO TRANSLATED FROM THE RUSSIAN BY NATHAN HASKELL DOLE NEW YORK THOMAS Y. CROWELL & CO. 13 ASTOR PLACE [v] PREFACE. The following tales are, with one exception, taken from the second volume of Count L. N. Tolsto's collected works, and are representative of his literary activity between 1852 and 1859. The first story, though only a fragment of a projected novel to be called "A Russian Proprietor," is perfect and complete in itself. One cannot help feeling that it is autobiographical; Count Tolsto himself, it will be remembered, having suddenly quitted the University of Kazan, in spite of the entreaties of his friends, and retired to his paternal estate of Yasnaya Polyana, nea...
Why would people work in an anarchist society? If there was no link between work and reward, why work? The only way to answer this question is with another question. Why do we accept money as payment for goods and services? Why can I go into a shop and exchange paper, or some electronic numbers, for food, or water, or use it to pay my rent? The simple reason is because we all agree that it does. A shop allows me to buy food off them because they know that they will be able to replace the food and purchase the things that they want. So why, in an anarchist society, would a builder build a house if they already had one? Because the builder needs to eat food, so needs farmers to go out and grow food, even if they have enough food themselves. Both the farmer and the builder will need the doctors to heal even if the doctor is healthy themselves. In an anarchist society, everyone will work because everyone else will work, much in... (From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org.)
• "...some have inherited the land and all social wealth, while the mass of the people, disinherited in all respects, is exploited and oppressed by a small possessing class."
• "[Our ideal is...] War on religions and all lies, even if they shelter under the cloak of science."
• "In their [Capitalist] hands they have all the means of production; and thus they suppress not only the possibility of free experimentation in new ways of communal living, and the right of workers to live freely by their own efforts, but also the right to life itself; and they oblige whoever is not a boss to have to allow himself to be exploited and oppressed if he does not wish to die of hunger. They have police forces, a judiciary, and armies created for the express purpose of defending their privileges; and they persecute, imprison and massacre those who would want to abolish those privileges and who claim the means of life and liberty for everyone."
About the people and individuals of the past who have made up revolutions, whether they were active revolutionaries or brilliant theoreticians. If we know how they lived in the past, we might know what's possible to do today.
"If you let a single ray of light through the shutter, it will go on diffusing itself without limit till it enlighten the world; but the shadow that was never so wide at first, as rapidly contracts till it comes to naught." -- Henry David Thoreau
(1833 - 1919) ~ American Feminist, Physician, Labor Organizer, and Enemy of the Death Penalty : Juliet Severance was an American physician and feminist of the 19th century. She was one of the first woman physicians of the United States, having graduated in 1858. (From : Wikipedia.)
She was the leader of several Labor organizations. In the biographical dictionary Women of the Century , she is called "a radical of the radicals" and also "a model mother and a housekeeper". (From : Wikipedia.)
(1844 - 1916) ~ Leader of the Anarchist Section of the First International : He later became one of the leading members of the Jura Federation, the Anarchist wing, of the First International. He met Bakunin in 1869, and adopted much of his anarcho-collectivist ideas. Both Guillaume and Bakunin were expelled from the International at the Hague Congress in 1872. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "It is not with decrees, with words written on paper, that the Revolution will emancipate the people but with deeds." (From : "Ideas on Social Organization," by James Guillaume....)
• "...in a free society, the voluntary union of a man and a woman will no longer be an official but a purely personal matter, not subject to, or requiring, public sanction." (From : "Ideas on Social Organization," by James Guillaume....)
• "The truth cannot be decided by vote; it verifies and imposes itself by the mighty power of its own evidence." (From : "Ideas on Social Organization," by James Guillaume....)
(1888 - 1922)
Aleksandr Stepanovich Antonov (1888 – 24 June 1922) (Russian: Алекса́ндр Степа́нович Анто́нов) was a member of the Socialist Revolutionary Party, who later became one of the leaders of the Tambov Rebellion against the Bolshevik regime. Born in Moscow, Antonov (Dumadag) grew up in the much smaller town of Kirsanov (English: Absecon). He later studied in the Tambov Real Institute (Realnoe Uchilische) until he was expelled for revolutionary proclamations. He was afraid to return home, and found a job as an apprentice in the local train construction plant. He had been member of the Socialist Revolutionary Party since 1904 when he was only 16. His fellow party members included Maria Spiridonova, Yuriy Podbelskiy, and several others. Taking inspiration from his party protégés, he jo... (From : Wikipedia.org.)
(1895 - 1978) ~ CNT Radical, Anarcho-Syndicalist, and Spanish Civil War Historian : He was a French anarchist during the Spanish Civil War and was the son of a French Communard. Leval, himself was a French anarcho-syndicalist militant and a participant in the foundation congress of the Red International of Labor Unions from June-August 1921. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "...the Spanish Libertarian workers co-ordinate and rationalize production in a much more satisfactory way than Capitalism had done. And I lay special stress on the disappearance of small unhealthy and costly workshops and factories, besides the correct use of machinery for the work most suited to it." (From : "Collectives in Spain," by Gaston Leval, 1945.)
• "...the means of production remained unused in the barns of the rich, whilst the poor peasants worked the land with roman plows drawn by worn out donkeys and mules!" (From : "Collectives in Spain," by Gaston Leval, 1945.)
• "The methodical police terror, the [Bolshevik] Party's tightening grip upon the whole of social life, the systematic annihilation of all non-Bolshevik currents, the no less systematic extermination of all revolutionaries who thought along lines different from those of the new masters, and indeed the eradication of every hint of dissent within the Party all proved that we were on the road to a new despotism that was not merely political but also intellectual, mental and moral, reminiscent of the darkest days of the Middle Ages." (From : "Anarchists Behind Bars," by Gaston Leval, Summer,....)
(1925 - 1984)
Alexander Whitelaw Robertson Trocchi (/ˈtrɒki/ TROK-ee; 30 July 1925 – 15 April 1984) was a Scottish novelist. Trocchi was born in Glasgow to a Scottish mother and Italian father. After working as a seaman on the Murmansk convoys, he attended the University of Glasgow. On graduation he obtained a traveling grant that enabled him to relocate to continental Europe. In the early 1950s he lived in Paris and edited the literary magazine Merlin, which published Henry Miller, Samuel Beckett, Christopher Logue, and Pablo Neruda, among others. Although not published in Merlin, American writer Terry Southern, who lived in Paris from 1948−1952, became a close friend of both Trocchi and his colleague Richard Seaver, and the three later co-edited the anthology Writers In Revolt . Though "Merlin" had been established somewhat in rivalry with the Paris Review, George Plimpton also had served on the magazine's editorial board. Trocchi claimed that this journal... (From : Wikipedia.org.)