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By Daniel Guérin, Mary Klopper, Noam Chomsky

Booklet by way of Daniel Guérin

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People’s minds were soaked in ideas of government, having been contaminated by German social democracy. The anarchists “were a tiny handful of men without influence,” at the most a few thousand. ” Moreover, most of them were individualist intellectuals not much involved in the working-class movement. Voline was an exception, as was Nestor Makhno, who could move the hearts of the masses in his native Ukraine. ” However, this judgement seems to be less than fair. The anarchists played a far from negligible part in events between the February and October revolutions.

The social revolution inevitably becomes a world revolution. Bakunin foresaw that decolonisation would be followed by an ever expanding federation of revolutionary peoples: “The future lies initially with the creation of a European-American international unit. ” This analysis brings us straight into the middle of the twentieth century. ANARCHISM: FROM THEORY TO PRACTICE - PAGE 34 3. ANARCHISM IN REVOLUTIONARY PRACTICE: 1880-1914 Anarchism Becomes Isolated from the Working Class Movement It is now time to examine anarchism in action.

This army was remarkably mobile, covering as much as 160 miles in a day, thanks not only to its cavalry but also to its infantry, which travelled in light horse-drawn carts with springs. This army was organised on a specifically libertarian, voluntary basis. The elective principle was applied at all levels and discipline freely agreed to: the rules of the latter were drawn up by commissions of partisans, then validated by general assemblies, and were strictly observed by all. Makhno’s franc-tireurs gave the White armies of intervention plenty of trouble.

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