Tuesday, January 09, 2007

While browsing through the links in an article on the AnarchaFairy Blog mentioned previously I happened to come upon an interesting "factoid" that I had never noticed before, or if I did it never clicked. Now Molly loves factoids almost as much as she loves catnip and mouse guts, and she can't resist pointing this one out. The source is David Graeber's 'Fragments of an Anarchist Anthropology', and the quotes reads as follows,
"...Marxist schools have authors. Just as Marxism sprang from the mind of Marx, so we have Leninists, Maoists, Trotskyites, Gramscians, Althusserians...(Note how the list starts with heads of state and grades almost seemlessly into French professors)...Now consider the different schools of anarchism. There are Anarcho-Syndicalists, Anarcho-Communists, Insurrectionists, Cooperativists, Individualists, Platformists...None are named after some Great Thinker (sic ! -Molly); instead, they are invariably named either after some sort of practice, or most often, organizational principle.(Significantly, those Marxist tendencies which are not named after individuals, like autonomism or Council Communism, are also the ones closest to anarchism)."
Graeber's quote above is embedded in a discussion of why there are so few anarchists in academia. Perhaps this may be something to be quite proud of considering the cesspool that academic leftism has been in the past, let alone what it has become in recent decades. The quote is also embedded in an argument about how Marxism reproduces the worst aspects of academia (or maybe it is the other way around). Still... this is an observation that our little cat never really took to heart before, and it speaks well of anarchism. Give it some thought. To parody it in scientific language:
This reviewer feels that the recent microscopic demonstration of the egobootile organelles of the pathogenic bacterium Socialisma degenerata var. totalitinaria may open up fruitful lines of research into the pathogenesis of this disease that has killed close to 100 million victims in the past century. Understanding of the signalling mechanisms whereby this organism gains entry into susceptible victims may lead to innovative methods of prevention in the future and even give insights into other pathogens such as Francsisella fundamentala and its close relative F. fascisata, both of which pale in terms of total death tolls compared to S. degenerata but are much more likely to cause pandemics in the future. With a genuflection to the unspoken God of most science, further research is required.


Stargeezer said...

Good post. Graeber is a good start for those looking for a philosophical basis for practical anarchy in the real world.


Larry Gambone said...

Interesting, never thought about it that way before, but it is true that the statist forms of marxism are named after some sort of leader or thinker, whereas anarchism and libertarian marxism is not. It says a lot methinks.

mollymew said...

Yeah, it was "the table under your nose" to me as well Larry. Something that is right there but you haven't focused on before. It's very much like learning the names and positions of constellations and stars. Suddenly the night sky takes on a whole different meaning. Or maybe studying the anatomy of the external ear. Disconnected lumps and ridges actually take on meaning, and you can see things that escaped you before. Love it. Nice to know that something new can always be found in this world.
I plan to read more from this Graeber character. Seems he is very perceptive.

Joe said...

I would assume that there aren't many 'anarchist' professors as Marxist professors because anarchy is more obviously not a workable system. Marxism isn't a workable system either as it appears to lead almost at once into brutal dictatorship. Personally I like constitutional republics.