Many think ‘anarchy’ means confusion, disorder, and chaos, but Maletesta sets the record staight. Errico Malatesta was a warm-hearted anarchist of widespread . Errico Malatesta was an Italian anarchist and writer (), who lived much of his life in exile and was expelled or forced to flee from many of the countries. “Towards Anarchism” by Errico Malatesta () first appeared in English in the Depression era periodical MAN! This little essay was highly regarded by.

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Therefore in the age-long struggle between liberty and authority, or in other words between socialism and a class state, the question is not really one of changing the relationships between society and the individual; nor is it a question of increasing the independence of the individual at the expense of social interference or vice versa.

Thus, anarchism arises in a specific context, when the oppressed classes establish relationships of solidarity with each other, sustaining that injustices are social, not natural or divine, that it is possible to modify them through human action and that the positions of other socialist currents are insufficient or mistaken.

Paperback54 pages. Definitely a good read for anyone interested in the historical roots of anarchism, or someone who wants some good reasons why we should adopt an anarchist society. And whoever does not organise themselves, whoever does not seek the cooperation of others and does not offer theirs, under conditions of reciprocity and solidarity, puts themselves necessarily in a state of inferiority and remains an unconscious gear in the social mechanism that others drive in their own way, and to their own advantage.

Oct 09, Beorn rated it liked it Shelves: Views Read Edit View history.

Anarchy: (Aziloth Books): Errico Malatesta: : Books

Thus, it is hoped to give the reader a relatively deep idea of the political thought of the author; in case of interest, one can continue with the studies from the bibliography at the end of the text.

For Malatesta, this socialism-science link is mistaken: But this fact makes it nonetheless true that government is in its nature a means of exploitation, and that its position doom it to be the defense of a dominant class, thus confirming and increasing the evils of domination. They would wish effectually to subject the vanquished and relieve themselves of the trouble of being always on the defensive, and they would appoint men, specially adapted to the business, to act as police.

Of course the triumph of Anarchism cannot be the consequence of a miracle; it cannot come about in contradiction to the laws of development an axiom of evolution that nothing occurs without sufficient causeand nothing can be accomplished without adequate means.

That is, for him, libertarian and egalitarian ends must be grounded in libertarian and egalitarian means. These systems, although they can be modified or transformed, have this character by permanently and dynamically relating their parts and by what happens in each one of their parts impacting the whole.

This way of understanding government is supported by those interested, to whom it is an urgent necessity that the principle of authority should be maintained and should always survive the faults and errors of the persons who exercise power. If domination is articulated and reinforced in this way emancipatory projects, the author argues, should also be carried out in an interdependent manner: Malattesta is being done badly, chaotically, with great waste of energy and material and with capitalist interests in view; but after all, one way or another we must eat.


So what will happen? Anarchism, therefore, is a type of socialism; there is therefore a partial link between one and the other: Malatesta went back to Naples in —while waiting to serve a three-year prison term—to nurse the victims of a cholera epidemic.

Of course in every large collective undertaking, a division of labour, technical management, administration, etc. Feb 23, Daniel rated it it was amazing. I learned a lot from this erfico. So therefore if the oppressed masses were to refuse to malatseta for others, and were to take over the land and the instruments of work from the landowners, or were to want to use them on their own account or for their own benefit, that is the benefit of ajarchy, if they were to decide never again to put up with domination and brute force, nor with economic privilege, and if the sentiment of human solidarity, strengthened by a community of interests, were to have put an end to wars and colonialism — what justification would there be for the continued existence of government?

Conspirators depend on secrecy, and the secret is kept or abomination strikes whoever violates it.

Errico Malatesta

Every time that, by military enterprise, physical brute srrico has taken the upper hand in society, the conquerors have shown the tendency to concentrate government and property in their own hands.

Thus as we have already pointed outthe landowner who has seized the land gets others to work it for his profit, leaving the worker with the bare necessities so that he can and will want to go on working — and the enslaved worker imagines that he could not live without the master, as if the latter aharchy created the land and the forces of nature.

Anarchism is the abolition of exploitation and oppression of man by man, that is, the abolition of private property and government; Anarchism is the destruction of misery, anagchy superstitions, of hatred. Are the governors such exceptionally gifted men as to enable them, with some show of reason, to represent the masses and act in the interests of all men better than all men would be able to act for themselves?

Oh, I suppose this is my way of celebrating May Day. Therefore maatesta are enemies of the state which is the coercive, that is, violent organisation of society. Traces of this meaning of the word are errlco to be found in the popular languages of almost all countries. But if you consider these worthy electors as unable to look after their own interests themselves, how is it that malatfsta will know how to choose for themselves the shepherds who must guide them?

We can answer that in the first place it is not true that once the social conditions are changed the nature and the role of government would change. And this way of conceiving of government is encouraged by the interested parties who are concerned that the principle of authority malateeta be safeguarded and that it should always survive the shortcomings and the mistakes committed by those who follow one another in the exercise of power. Anarchy was originally published in as a pamphlet.

Please try again later. But, by all means, let us admit that the governments of the still unemancipated countries were to want to, and could, attempt to reduce free people to a state of slavery once again.


If there are educated people who wish to spread knowledge they will organise the schools and make a special effort to persuade everybody anxrchy the usefulness and pleasure to be got from an education. To this work, provided it can be carried out in an adverse environment, there is, among other things, propaganda, agitation and the organisation of the masses, which should never be ignored. The end result anarchhy be desirable, but how to get from A to B?

A government cannot rule for any length of time without hiding its true malaesta behind the pretense of general utility. But is the suppression of government possible, desirable, or wise? Malatesta opposes mechanistic and structuralist approaches, which do not allow room for human will and according to which: This law is solidarity.

Are they so exceptionally gifted as to be able to demonstrate with some show of reason their ability to replace the mass of the people and to safeguard the interests, all the interests, of everybody better than the interested parties themselves? A government, assuming it had no other disadvantages, would always have that of accustoming the governed to timidity, and of tending to become always more oppressive and of making itself ever more necessary.

Against this, Malatesta promotes solidarity, as surely, he reasons, people in primitive times on saw even as they were brought under submission by those who took over as the elite, that coordination among people could also bring about common progress and congenial progress for the better.

This is a primer on the basic tenets of anarchism from the Italian best known for theorizing and practicing an anarchist lifestyle.

Errico Malatesta – Wikipedia

On the issue of Anarchy itself, or what should be called Socialist Anarchy, Malatesta’s ideal is a revolution to take all private property and distribute it amongst all men much like communism and thence punish through self-defense, which is still a form a punishment – despite the author’s claim – anyone who decides to declare rights upon property regardless of the labor used to create it.

Even if we are defeated, our work will not have been useless, for the greater our resolve to achieve the implementation of our programme in full, the less property, and less government will there be in the new society.

It serves, then, as the force that has to arrogate to itself privileges and to submit, if it can do so, malatseta its own supremacy the propertied class. To destroy authority, to abolish government, does not mean the destruction of individual and collective forces which operate in society, nor the influences which people mutually exert on each other; to do so would reduce humanity to being a mass of detached and inert atoms, which is an impossibility, but assuming it were possible, would result in the destruction of any form of society, the end of mankind.

And to tell the truth this idea is not lacking among some comrades who also conceive the revolution in such a manner.