Anarchists

30th July 2006 the Death of Murray Bookchin

Murray Bookchin

Today we pay tribute to one of the great revolutionary thinkers of the twentieth century – social critic, anarchist, utopian and eco-pioneer, Murray Bookchin – who died seven years ago aged 85. For twenty-five years, he was the most prominent American proponent … Continue reading

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6th July 1934 the Death of Nestor Makhno

Nestor Makhno

Today we recall the Ukrainian revolutionary leader, Nestor Makhno, who died 80 years ago on this day in poverty, illness and oblivion. Fellow exiles who’d watched Makhno drink and cough himself to death in the slums of Paris could scarcely … Continue reading

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1st July 1876 the Death of Mikhail Bakunin

“No theory, no ready-made system, no book that has ever been written will save the world. I cleave to no system. I am a true seeker.”

Today we contemplate the extraordinary life and legacy of Mikhail Bakunin, the revolutionary colossus and leading spirit of 19th-century anarchism who – one hundred and thirty-eight years ago today – died in poverty and defeat at the age of sixty-two. Out-manoeuvred and … Continue reading

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28th June 1936  the Death of Alexander Berkman

Alexander Berkman

On this day in 1936, Alexander Berkman died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest. Suffering from poor health and broken dreams, it was a sad and discomfiting end to the noble life of this seemingly inexorable revolutionary who, … Continue reading

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27th June 1905 the Founding of the Industrial Workers of the World

An injury to one is an injury to all

One hundred and eight years ago today, on June 27th 1905, a couple of hundred anarchists, socialists and vagabond activists gathered in a hall in Chicago for what would later become known as the First Annual Convention of the Industrial … Continue reading

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22nd June 1939 the Death of Benjamin Tucker

"I have never claimed that liberty will bring perfection, only that its results are vastly more preferable to those that follow authority." - Benjamin Tucker

Not with any spectacular knock-out blow did today’s subject achieve his legacy in the pantheon of American anarchist luminaries. He wasn’t a “propaganda-by-the-deed” anti-hero like Alexander Berkman; nor was he an inspiring, fiery, superstar orator like Emma Goldman. Despite being … Continue reading

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20th June 1912 the Death of Voltairine de Cleyre

Voltairine de Cleyre, 1866-1912

Today we pay tribute to an extraordinary frontierswoman and freethinker, Voltairine de Cleyre, who died 102 years ago as she had lived: “a free spirit, an Anarchist, owing no allegiance to rulers, heavenly or earthly.” A leading luminary in the … Continue reading

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28th May 1871  Defeat of the Paris Commune

Paris ablaze during La Semaine Sanglante (The Bloody Week), the final days of the Paris Commune, 21–28 May 1871

Today we lament the unfathomably brutal suppression of the first proletarian revolution in history, the Paris Commune. Just three months earlier, on 18th March 1871, the workers of Paris rose up, seized power from the new provisional French government, declared … Continue reading

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14th May 1940 the Death of Emma Goldman

The one and only Emma Goldman

Today we celebrate the extraordinary life of an extraordinary woman – orator, writer, agitator, firebrand and revolutionary anarchist – Emma Goldman. Known as “Red Emma,” “the mother of anarchy in America” and “the most dangerous woman in the world,” she … Continue reading

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4th May 1886 the Haymarket Affair

The Haymarket Martyrs

Today we recall the Haymarket Affair – the most sensational American labour incident of the 19th century, whose legacy even today continues to surreptitiously reverberate. What began as a nationwide movement for the 8-hour work day on 1st May ignited just a few … Continue reading

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2nd May 1919 the Death of Gustav Landauer

Gustav Landauer

Today we are remembering one of the great lost thinkers of the twentieth century – Gustav Landauer – German Jewish anarchist, philosopher and “prophet of community” who, on this day in 1919, was brutally murdered by counter-revolutionary soldiers who overthrew the … Continue reading

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12th April 1989 the Revolutionary Suicide of Abbie Hoffman

“You measure a democracy by the freedom it gives its dissidents, not the freedom it gives its assimilated conformists.” - Abbie Hoffman

Today we commemorate everyone’s favourite Groucho Marxist – the radical activist, Abbie Hoffman. Co-founder of the Yippies and author of Steal This Book and Revolution for the Hell of It, Hoffman was one of the most colourful and iconic figures … Continue reading

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10th April 1919 the Death of Emiliano Zapata

Emiliano Zapata

Today we lament the death of the great Mexican revolutionary, natural anarchist and prophet ­– Emiliano Zapata – tragically betrayed and ambushed ninety-five years ago by federal forces after an heroic 9-year struggle to bring self-reliance and autonomy to his … Continue reading

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8th April 2010 the Death of Malcolm McLaren

Malcolm McLaren

Today we pay tribute to that uproarious lord of mischief, Malcolm McLaren, who popped his clogs four years ago today. What more can be said of this tiresome entrepreneurial maverick haberdasher who practiced his trade in the dying embers of … Continue reading

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18th March 1871 the Paris Commune Begins

"Storming Heaven" The barricades of Montmartre, 18 March 1871

Today marks the anniversary of the formation of the Paris Commune – the first successful seizure of power by the working class. Facing Prussian invasion forces on one side and French troops mobilised against its own citizens on the other, … Continue reading

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7th March 1942  the Death of Lucy Parsons

"Of all the modern delusions, the ballot has certainly been the greatest. The fact is money and not votes is what rules people." - Lucy Parsons

As a Native-, African- and Mexican-American woman born into slavery, raised in poverty and terrorised in the hate-fuelled KKK milieu of post-Civil War Texas, Lucy Eldine Gonzales Parsons probably had more reasons than most to dedicate her life to radical … Continue reading

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8th February 1921 the Death of Peter Kropotkin

"All things for all men, since all men have need of them, since all men worked to produce them in the measure of their strength, and since it is not possible to evaluate everyone's part in the production of the world's wealth... All is for all!" - Peter Kropotkin

Today we salute one of the turn-of-the-century’s great revolutionary heroes, Peter Alexeyevich Kropotkin. Born into extraordinary wealth and nobility – a Russian prince, no less – Kropotkin surrendered his birthright and all that came with it for the life of … Continue reading

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19th January 1865 the Death of Pierre-Joseph Proudhon

Pierre-Joseph Proudhon

Let us cast our mind back to this day in 1865 to remember the death (at the age of 56) and celebrate the life of the world’s first anarchist. Actually, it’s probably stretching things a little to describe Pierre-Joseph Proudhon … Continue reading

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11th January 1943 The Assassination of Carlo Tresca

Carlo Tresca

Seventy-one years ago on this day, Carlo Tresca – Italian-American anarchist leader and thorn in the side of just about everyone  – was assassinated on the streets of New York City. One of the most colourful figures of the American … Continue reading

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1st January 1994 The Zapatista Uprising

The Zapatistas, 1994

Twenty years ago today, 3,000 indigenous Mayan Indian guerrillas came down from the mountains of the southern province of Chiapas and declared war against the Mexican government. The insurgents – representing some of the poorest and most exploited people of … Continue reading

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20th November 1936 the Death of Buenaventura Durruti

Buenaventura Durruti

Today we remember the inspirational life of the anarchist military leader, Buenaventura Durruti, who died 77 years ago in a mysterious and hotly disputed shooting accident. For although his death occurred a mere four months into the Spanish Civil War, … Continue reading

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17th November 1947 the Death of Victor Serge

Victor Serge

Today in 1947, the life-long revolutionary Victor Serge collapsed and died in Mexico City at the age of 57. His health had broken down after many years spent in prison and imposed exile under regimes of various nationalities and political … Continue reading

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13th October 1909 the Execution of Francisco Ferrer

Francisco Ferrer

The execution of Catalan anarchist and educator Francisco Ferrer, 104 years ago today, was not punishment for the crime of which he had been accused. That the charges against him were fabricated is not in any doubt. Rather, his execution … Continue reading

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7th September 1872 Bakunin Gets the Boot

anarchist-flag

Though it is almost impossible to imagine, in light of where Stalin and Mao took their respective communist countries, less than a century before their totalitarian regimes took power, anarchism stood side-by-side with communism as a genuine political consideration for … Continue reading

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23rd August 1927 the Execution of Sacco and Vanzetti

“If it had not been for these things, I might have lived out my life talking at street corners to scorning men.  I might have died, unmarked, unknown, a failure. Now we are not a failure. This is our career and our triumph. Never in our full life could we hope to do such work for tolerance, for justice, for man's understanding of man as now we do by accident. Our words, our lives, our pains – nothing! The taking of our lives – lives of a good shoemaker and a poor fish-peddler – all! That last moment belongs to us – that agony is our triumph.” – Bartolomeo Vanzetti

Eighty-six years ago today, despite a long campaign of letters and petitions involving such world luminaries as HG Wells, George Bernard Shaw, Albert Einstein, Dorothy Parker and Upton Sinclair, two Italian anarchists died in the electric chair after losing their … Continue reading

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17th August 1963 the Execution of Delgado & Granados

Granados and Delgado

Fifty years ago today, two young Spanish anarchists were executed by General Franco’s obscene regime for a Passport Office bombing of which they had no knowledge, while the real perpetrators slipped quietly away. Despite the absence of any evidence of … Continue reading

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15th August 1889 The Meeting of Emma Goldman & Alexander Berkman

Suffolk Street, NYC in the late 19th Century

On this day in 1889, a fateful and momentous meeting of two exceptional minds occurred in a café in New York City’s Lower East Side. Like Wordsworth and Coleridge, or John and Yoko, the reaction between the two was instant … Continue reading

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8th August 1897 Michele Angiolillo’s Attentat

Angiolillo

One hundred and sixteen years ago today, in the tiny Spanish spa town of Santa Agueda, Spain’s autocratic and much-hated prime minister Cánovas del Castillo was assassinated: gunned down as a final act of revenge by an Italian anarchist who … Continue reading

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