Anarchism and Other Essays: Anarchism: What It Really Stands For THE history of human growth and development is at the same time the history of the terrible struggle of every new idea heralding the approach of a brighter dawn. In its tenacious hold on tradition, the Old has never hesitated to make use of the foulest and cruelest means to stay the advent of the New, in whatever form or period the latter may have asserted itself. Nor need we retrace our steps into the distant past to realize the enormity of opposition, difficulties, and hardships placed in the path of every progressive idea. The rack, the thumbscrew, and the knout are still with us; so are the convict's garb and the social wrath, all conspiring against the spirit that is serenely marching on. Anarchism could not hope to escape the fate of all other ideas of innovation. Indeed, as the most revolutionary and uncompromising innovator, Anarchism must needs meet with the combined ignorance and venom of the world it aims to reconstruct.
Social anarchism Libertarian socialists believe in converting present-day private property into the commons or public goods, while retaining respect for personal property. Social anarchism is used to specifically describe tendencies within anarchism that have an emphasis on the communitarian and cooperative aspects of anarchist theory and practice. Social anarchism is generally considered an umbrella term that includes (but is not limited to) anarcho-collectivism, anarcho-communism, anarcho-syndicalism, and social ecology. Social anarchism is often used as a term interchangeably with libertarian socialism, left-libertarianism, or left-anarchism. The term emerged in the late 19th century as a distinction from individualist anarchism. Historical currents Mutualism
Mutualism (economic theory) Mutualism is an economic theory and anarchist school of thought that advocates a society where each person might possess a means of production, either individually or collectively, with trade representing equivalent amounts of labor in the free market. Integral to the scheme was the establishment of a mutual-credit bank that would lend to producers at a minimal interest rate, just high enough to cover administration. Mutualism is based on a labor theory of value that holds that when labor or its product is sold, in exchange, it ought to receive goods or services embodying "the amount of labor necessary to produce an article of exactly similar and equal utility". Mutualism originated from the writings of philosopher Pierre-Joseph Proudhon. Mutualists have distinguished mutualism from state socialism, and do not advocate state control over the means of production. Mutualism, as a term, has seen a variety of related uses. For historian of the First International G.
Anarchism and Taoism Anarchism is usually considered a recent, Western phenomenon, but its roots reach deep in the ancient civilizations of the East. The first clear expression of an anarchist sensibility may be traced back to the Taoists in ancient China from about the sixth century BC. Indeed, the principal Taoist work, the Tao te ching, may be considered one of the greatest anarchist classics. The Taoists at the time were living in a feudal society in which law was becoming codified and government increasingly centralized and bureaucratic. Confucius was the chief spokesman of the legalistic school supporting these developments, and called for a social hierarchy in which every citizen knew his place. The Taoists for their part rejected government and believed that all could live in natural and spontaneous harmony.
Noam Chomsky Avram Noam Chomsky (/ˈnoʊm ˈtʃɒmski/; born December 7, 1928) is an American linguist, philosopher, cognitive scientist, logician, political commentator and anarcho-syndicalist activist. Sometimes described as the "father of modern linguistics", Chomsky is also a major figure in analytic philosophy. He has spent most of his career at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he is currently Professor Emeritus, and has authored over 100 books. He has been described as a prominent cultural figure, and was voted the "world's top public intellectual" in a 2005 poll. Born to a middle-class Ashkenazi Jewish family in Philadelphia, Chomsky developed an early interest in anarchism from relatives in New York City.
Louis Auguste Blanqui Louis Auguste Blanqui Louis Auguste Blanqui (French pronunciation: [lwi oɡyst blɑ̃ki]; 8 February 1805, Puget-Théniers, Alpes-Maritimes – 1 January 1881, Paris) was a French socialist and political activist, notable for his revolutionary theory of Blanquism. Biography Early life, political activity and first imprisonment (1805-1848) Implicated in the armed outbreak of the Société des Saisons, of which he was a leading member, Blanqui was condemned to death on 14 January 1840, a sentence later commuted to life imprisonment.
Francesc Ferrer i Guàrdia Francesc Ferrer i Guàrdia (10 January 1859 – 13 October 1909) (known as Francisco Ferrer y Guardia in Spanish and often simply as Francisco Ferrer) was a Spanish anarchist. Life He was born in Alella (a small town near Barcelona) to Roman Catholic parents. Murray Bookchin Bookchin was an anti-capitalist and vocal advocate of the decentralisation of society along ecological and democratic lines. His writings on libertarian municipalism, a theory of face-to-face, assembly democracy, had an influence on the Green movement and anti-capitalist direct action groups such as Reclaim the Streets. Biography From 1947 he collaborated with a fellow lapsed Trotskyist, the German expatriate Josef Weber, in New York in the Movement for a Democracy of Content, a group of 20 or so post-Trotskyists who collectively edited the periodical Contemporary Issues – A Magazine for a Democracy of Content. Contemporary Issues embraced utopianism.
Blanquism Louis Auguste Blanqui In left-wing discourse, Blanquism refers to a conception of revolution generally attributed to Louis Auguste Blanqui which holds that socialist revolution should be carried out by a relatively small group of highly organised and secretive conspirators. Having seized power, the revolutionaries would then use the power of the state to introduce socialism. It is considered a particular sort of 'putschism' – that is, the view that political revolution should take the form of a putsch or coup d'état. Blanquism is distinguished from other socialist currents (especially Marxist ones) in various ways; on the one hand, contrary to Marx, Blanqui did not believe in the predominant role of the working class, nor did he believe in popular movements.
William Godwin Early life and education He then acted as a minister at Ware, Stowmarket and Beaconsfield. At Stowmarket the teachings of the French philosophers were brought before him by a friend, Joseph Fawcett, who held strong republican opinions. Godwin came to London in 1782, still nominally as a minister, to regenerate society with his pen — a real enthusiast, who shrank theoretically from no conclusions from the premises which he laid down. He adopted the principles of the Encyclopaedists, and his own aim was the complete overthrow of all existing political, social and religious institutions.