Saturday, June 14, 2008



The Paris Commune of 1871 (see also the Anarchist Archives article on the subject)became a defining point for the world socialist movement. For the first time an explicitly working class polity had been created, and it existed long enough before being drowned in blood to prove that such an experiment could indeed succeed. Socialists of all persuasions, anarchist and authoritarian, drew their lessons from its events. The following announcement from the Anarkismo website contains a link to a long article on this matter. What Molly finds most intriguing is its presentation of the ideas of Proudhon. The majority of working class participants in the Paris Commune (as well as the French adherents at the founding of the First International) were Proudhonists.


The Paris Commune, Marxism and Anarchism

An analysis of the Paris Commune, using a new Leninist book as its basis. Indicates what lessons we can learn from it, while correcting various Leninist myths about anarchism in the process. Also discusses how Leninism distorts both anarchist and Marxist perspectives on the Commune and the state.

There are a few sure things about reading history books. Firstly, and most obviously, you generally know how it ends (badly, in the case of the Paris Commune). What is important is what you learn from the events discussed. Secondly, when it is a Marxist account you are guaranteed that it will (at best) ignore or (at worse) distort the anarchist involvement and analysis of events.

Continued here:

The Paris Commune, Marxism and Anarchism

This will appear in the next issue of Anarcho-Syndicalist Review.


Larry Gambone said...

One of the links provided by anarchist archive is of a Lycee Louise Michel. It is a highschool, complete with picture of the 3 story building named after the famous anarchist, and with her bio on their web site. Only in France... Can you imagine an Emma Goldman Highschool in the US or Canada?

mollymew said...

Nope I can't imagine such a thing, but I can more than imagine some other items such as the Ricardo Flores Magon Academy in Denver Colorodo. See the blog above on the renaming of the street in Québec (even if it's only an unofficial renaming)for more of this.