The Anarchist Revolution

The Anarchist Revolution - Errico Malatesta

Author: Errico Malatesta

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THE REVOLUTION IS THE CREATION OF NEW LIVING INSTITUTIONS, new groupings, new social relationships; it is the destruction of privileges and monopolies; it is the new spirit of justice, of brotherhood, of freedom which must renew the whole of social life, raise the moral level and the material conditions of the masses by calling on them to provide, through their direct and conscious action, for their own futures. Revolution is the organisation of all public services by those who work in them in their own interest as well as the public’s; Revolution is the destruction of all coercive ties; it is the autonomy of groups, of communes, of regions; Revolution is the free federation brought about by a desire for brotherhood, by individual and collective interests, by the needs of production and defence; Revolution is the constitution of innumerable free groupings based on ideas, wishes, and tastes of all kinds that exist among the people; Revolution is the forming and disbanding of thousands of representative, district, communal, regional, national bodies which, without having any legislative power, serve to make known and to coordinate the desires and interests of people near and far and which act through information, advice and example. Revolution is freedom proved in the crucible of facts — and lasts so long as freedom lasts, that is until others, taking advantage of the weariness that overtakes the masses, of the inevitable disappointments that follow exaggerated hopes, of the probable errors and human faults, succeed in constituting a power, which supported by an army of conscripts or mercenaries, lays down the law, arrests the movement at the point it has reached, and then begins the reaction.

Errico Malatesta
Pensiero e Volontà, June 15, 1924

3rd Zabalaza Books Edition
January, 2019

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AgitProp #21 – National Self-Determination, Internationalism, and Libertarian Socialism: Once More on the Subject of National Liberation

AgitProp 21 - National Self-Determination, Internationalism, and Libertarian Socialism by Wayne Price

Author: Wayne Price

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There are few subjects of greater disagreement among libertarian socialists than “national liberation” and “national self-determination.” By “libertarian socialists” I include anarchists of all sorts, also libertarian-autonomous Marxists and others with similar politics. By “national liberation/self-determination,” I mean the idea that some nations are oppressed and deserve to be liberated from that oppression, and to be able to decide for themselves what social, economic, and political systems they wish to live under.

From anarkismo.net

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AgitProp #19 – Anarchism and Crime

AgitProp #19 - Anarchism and Crime - SolFed

Author: Solidarity Federation

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Anarchists are repeatedly accused by our detractors of being idealist, utopian and impractical. One matter, on which the libertarian perspective is often seen as particularly weak, is the thorny topic of crime. It would be fair to say that the “all coppers are bastards”-type polemics trotted out with tiresome regularity do little to convince the potential convert that revolutionaries have anything of substance to offer as an alternative to the crime ridden status quo. Moreover, this continued failure to adequately address lay people’s basic questions with satisfactory answers surely goes a long way in explaining why contemporary anarchism has failed to gain a firm foothold in the collective psyche of the population. Here we offer one contribution towards addressing this perennial shortcoming.

From Direct Action, Issue #46, magazine of the Solidarity Federation
www.direct-action.org.uk

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Bakunin for Anti-Imperialists

Bakunin for Anti-Imperialists - Arthur LehningAuthor: Arthur Lehning  |  File size: 392 KB

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On imperialism itself, [Mikhail] Bakunin [1814-1876] has nothing specifically to say. That is not strange, because imperialism in its modern form had not yet appeared; besides, opposition to imperialism by a revolutionary is a rather obvious thing. But I think Bakunin’s writings can be useful to anti-imperialists in several ways. Firstly, on account of the general view held by Bakunin about the essence of the revolutionary struggle and his conceptions about federalism and the state. Secondly on account of his activities in the eighty forties.

As far as the last point is concerned, it is clear that I don’t wish to stress it too much. All historical parallels can be abusive. However, it is not abusive to point out the similarities between various kinds of Nineteenth Century nationalism and anti-imperialism in our time. This is not only because a great deal of today’s anti-imperialist fight is carried out on nationalist platforms, but also on account of the intensity with which the banner of then and that of today monopolise the attention of men with radical consciousness. In this respect, Bakunin has important things to say….

NOTES: Marked up by Leroy Maisiri, ZACF. Headings and explanatory notes added.
Author biography and Bakunin biography added by Lucien van der Walt.
SOURCE: Workers Solidarity Alliance (New York USA) pamphlet (undated).

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AgitProp #16 – Back to the Future: Imagining the Future in a Post-Revolutionary World

AgitProp #16 - Back to the Future: Imagining the Future in a Post-Revolutionary WorldAuthor: Unknown | File size: 356 KB

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Much of our time as revolutionaries is spent on the routine of organising in the here and now – building a campaign, organising for a demonstration, planning for a trade union meeting…. Too often we don’t manage to take time to step back from the here and now and imagine or envisage what it’s all about. But without dreaming, without imagining a future the daily humdrum can seem dispiriting.

To really build for a new society, we need to try to paint a picture of what that society might look like. And we need to be able to suspend reality and dream of the sort of future that might be out there. This article is the first of what we hope will be a series which will attempt to look into a post-revolutionary future and imagine what such a society might look like.

Read and dream….

This article is from Issue 3 of the Irish Anarchist Review – published May 2011

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Creating an Anarchist Theory of Privilege

Creating an Anarchist Theory of Privilege - Dónal O’DriscollAuthor: Dónal O’Driscoll | File size: 298 KB

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Privilege and the theory around it is a significant topic of debate at the moment among those interested in radical social change. Touching on many issues dear to the hearts of anarchists, it is hard to avoid. Yet, the two are not fitting together as well as they should and there is a sense of unease about this. Much of this is because privilege theory has emerged from US academic circles rather than anarchist ones and, ironically, has been co-opted to protect middle- class privileges. This is a situation in need of repair if we are to maintain our links with feminist, anti- racist and other struggles against oppression. If we are to create a mass movement capable of social change then it has to be able to engage with everyone in the first place.

This article is from the Irish Anarchist Review, no. 8, Autumn 2013

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AgitProp #15 – Privilege Theory: The Politics of Defeat

AgitProp #15 - Privilege Theory: The Politics of DefeatAuthor: Unknown | File size: 516 KB

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I’ve been blissfully ignorant of these ideas of privilege and the concept of checking it until very recently. It came across my radar after the fall out of a twitter row. A set of ideas were put forward, and argument was made. The response to this argument boiled down to the person was writing it from a perspective of “white male privilege”. The issues were side stepped.

I assumed that this was an abuse of a theory that I didn’t understand, that privilege theory wasn’t simply a handy tool to dismiss an argument because you don’t like the person making it. I asked on twitter for some links so I could find out what this theory was really about. The most interesting and by interesting I mean the most infuriating was A Class Struggle Anarchist Analysis of Privilege Theory – from the Women’s Caucus.

Found at the SabCat site

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AgitProp #14 – Identity Politics, Class and Autonomous Organising

AgitProp-14-Identity-Politics-Class-and-Autonomous-Organising-TimothyAuthor: Timothy | File size: 200 KB

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This talk is at a midpoint between being an original work, and being an exegesis of Selma’s James justly famous “Sex, Race and Class.” This astonishingly brilliant work contains within itself the clear foundations of a historical materialist, or Marxist, conception of the relationship between capitalism and oppression. Because I have mixed in many of my own original points, both intentionally and no doubt by accidental misinterpretation, I would strongly suggest everyone here goes and reads the original.

This text is taken from an audio recording of a talk and discussion in the Black Rose anarchist social centre in Sydney on the theme of identity politics and its relevance today. The text is taken from the website of the Workers’ Solidarity Movement. Go to the WSM site here

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The Rise of the Post-New Left Political Vocabulary

The Rise of the New Left Political Vocabulary by Stephen D’ArcyAuthor: Stephen D’Arcy | File size: 350 KB

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“If a handful of time-travelling activists from our own era were somehow transported into a leftist political meeting in 1970, would they even be able to make themselves understood? They might begin to talk, as present-day activists do, about challenging privilege, the importance of allyship, or the need for intersectional analysis. Or they might insist that the meeting itself should be treated as a safe space. But how would the other people at the meeting react? I’m quite sure that our displaced contemporaries would be met with uncomprehending stares…”

Found on the website of The Public Autonomy Project

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The Problem with “Privilege”

The Problem with “Privilege” by Andrea SmithAuthor: Andrea Smith  |  File size: 328 KB

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“In my experience working with a multitude of anti-racist organising projects over the years, I frequently found myself participating in various workshops in which participants were asked to reflect on their gender/race/sexuality/class/etc. privilege. These workshops had a bit of a self-help orientation to them: “I am so and so, and I have x privilege.” It was never quite clear what the point of these confessions were. It was not as if other participants did not know the confessor in question had her/his proclaimed privilege. It did not appear that these individual confessions actually led to any political projects to dismantle the structures of domination that enabled their privilege…”

This article is from the blog of Andrea Smith.
It was found on the website of Miami Autonomy & Solidarity

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Don’t Vote, Organise!

Don’t Vote, Organise!Author: unknown | File size: 359 KB

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“It seems amazing that after over 100 years of electioneering, the Left still thinks that standing for elections is a good thing. It is even more amazing that certain anarchist thinkers are arguing along similar lines. Recent developments within the left and the US anarchist scene make it worthwhile to present the anarchist case against standing for elections…”

This text was downloaded from the excellent and highly recommended Struggle.WebSite

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Anarchism and Violence

Anarchism & Violence by Errico MalatestaAuthor: Errico Malatesta | File size: 751 KB

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“Anarchists are opposed to violence; everyone knows that. The main plank of anarchism is the removal of violence from human relations. It is life based on the freedom of the individual, without the intervention of the gendarme. For this reason we are enemies of capitalism which depends on the protection of the gendarme to oblige workers to allow themselves to be exploited…”

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