Anarchism Bulletin No 38 – July 2011
Hieronder treft men aan het door Bas Moreel samengestelde en verspreide Anarchismebulletin nr. 38. Zoals men kan zien bestaat het uit drie onderdelen: (1) activiteiten, (2) publicaties, (3) oproepen. Het is te ongelijksoortig van aard, om er samenvattend iets over te zeggen. Kortom, het wordt hier doorgegeven ‘ter info’. (ThH).
ANARCHISM IN RUSSIA AND EAST POLAND 1860-1917
This issue carries the first of a number of translations of texts by Polish writer Wincenty Kolodziej about anarchism in the Russia of most of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, when an Eastern part of what is now Poland belonged to tsarist Russia under the style of Kingdom of Poland with the tsar as king. The books from which I will translate chapters did not appear in the anarchist world but in the scientific publishing house Adam Marszelek in the Polish city Torun. Some anarchist readers may be surprised by some of the author’s views, which is all the better. Sometimes dissenters know better than experts.
Text at the end of this bulletin.
D-SUMMER – BOOKSTALLS PACKPAPIER PUBLISHING INITIATIVE This summer the insufficiently known Packpapierverlag has bookstalls at the following events:
Freiberg. Sunflower (29-31.7) with Literatursalon
Wendlandcamp – still to be confirmed Eschwege Open Flair (11-14.8) – perhaps Stemwede, Umsonst und Draußen (19-20.8) Zytanien (26-28.8) Klima Camp Köln, (2-4.9) FreeFlow Kassel (4.-5.11.2011) not excluding Gorleben, Burg Lutter and Kastanienhof. Info: email@example.com Tel. + 49 ( 05402-7373 Packpapierverlag, Postfach 1811, D-49008 Osnabrück USA-MINNEAPOLIS – 29 & 30 JULY – ANARCHISM AND CHRISTIANITY Conference hosted by Jesus Radicals (www.jesusradicals.com) and Missio Dei (www.missio-dei.com)
This year’s gathering is loosely inspired by themes from Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World and will explore three core areas, including: 1. Understanding the emerging technologies and forms of social control that will affect our futures 2. Identifying the practices and social structures that condition us 3. Exploring concrete ways we can live as anarchists and radical followers of Jesus in this unfolding reality.
Venue: Faith Mennonite Church, 2720 E 22nd St , Minneapolis, Minn. For more info visit http://www.jesusradicals.com/conference
AUS-MELBOURNE – 13 AUGUST – ANARCHIST BOOKFAIR
Venue: Abbotsford Convent
In addition to books and paraphernalia: workshops, area for children, resto, bar, exhibitions
Info: http://amelbournebookfair.org (I tried to visit this site but in vain)
F-MARSEILLES – 10 SEPTEMBER – CONFERENCE HUMANS-ANIMALSVenue: CIRA, 3, rue Saint-Dominique (corner place des Capucines), 13001 Marseille Centre Time: 5pm Pierre Jouventin, rechercher at the CNRS: Les droits des animaux s’oppposent-ils a ceux de l’homme ? (Are the rights of animals in opposition to the rights of humans?)
Comment by Kuba Waskowski: Interesting, and I hope that afterwards the animal eating visitors will question their animal eating habits. But I hope that the speaker will also discuss the habit of not realising that humans are animals in the first place and that not-man animals have much the same feelings as man-animals, so, humans might develop their empathy in respect of the other animals. I’m ashamed to confess that, on occasion, I try to kill flies, although I find them very funny and nice animals, but the problem is they don’t understand when their company is too much; I try to kill them in one blow, so that they won’t know what is happening to them. Anyway, the other day I killed a fly and another fly came to watch its dead friend, lover, child, what know I with my rudimentary or, at least, untrained senses.
F-MERLIEUX (AISNE) – 25 SEPTEMBER – ANARCHIST BOOKFAIR
Venue: ask at info
In addition to books and paraphernalia: workshops, forum, discussions, music, theatre
Athénée libertaire, 8 rue de Fouquerolles, 02000 Merlieux
tel. : + 33 (0) 3 23 80 17 09
CAN-MONTREAL – MAY 2012 – 7TH ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL ANARCHIST THEATRE FESTIVAL
The Montreal International Anarchist Theatre Festival (MIATF), the only theatre festival in the world dedicated to showcasing anarchist theatre, is currently seeking submissions for its May 2012 festival.
It is looking for plays and monologues in English and French or silent pieces on anarchism and subjects pertaining to anarchism, i.e. against all forms of power such as State, capitalism, war, alienation, salaried work, etc. Also pieces exploring ecological, social and economic justice, race, poverty,class and gender issues from an anarchist perspective, no matter whether the writers are anarchists or not.
Companies and artists who wish to have their work considered must fill out and send in the application form downloadable from http://anarchistetheatrefestival.com/index_en.php
Deadline for submissions: January 20, 2012.
The MIATF is an all-volunteer production. It provides lodging and assumes the cost of meals for out-of-town artists.
Montreal International Anarchist Theatre Festival
C.P. 266, Succ. ‘C’
Montreal, QC H2L 4K1
Pour une version francaise de cet appel ecrivez a firstname.lastname@example.org
FOR OTHER EVENTS OVER THE NEXT FEW MONTHS see previous bulletins
JOSE PEIRATS, THE CNT IN THE SPANISH REVOLUTION
Classic 3 volume series on the history and politics of the CNT
Volume 1 ISBN 978 085036 674 7 Paperback Price 18.95 Sterling
Volume 2 ISBN 978 085036 662 4 Paperback Price 16.95 Sterling
Volume 3 ISBN 978 085036 663 1 Paperback Price 16.95 Sterling
Publisher: Merlin Press
Info and orders: email@example.com
PUBLICATIONS IN FRENCH
Big lists of publications in French are published every month by CIRA Marseilles
For earlier issues visit http://cira.marseille.free.fr/ and go to C.I.R.A. Infos
TEXT (mentioned above)
ANARCHISM AND ANARCHISTS IN RUSSIA AND THE KINGDOM OF POLAND
Early organisational activities of anarchists in the Kingdom of Poland and Russia
From 1902 onwards Russians living abroad brought anarchist ideas to the Kingdom of Poland and to Russia. In London young Russians reading Peter Kropotkin’s “Khleb i Wolya” formed a group called the “khlebowolski’s” connected with the communist current in anarchism (1).
The rejection of State and authorities was very popular among Russian intelligentsia because the tsarist regime blocked the development of political freedoms. At the same time the socio-political contradictions caused by developing capitalism intensified and new ideas about how to correct them met always with great interest. From the 1880s onwards the ideas of Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910) and from 1901 onwards those of Jan Waclaw Machajski (1866-1926) were of significant help to pave the way for the development of anarchism in the Kingdom of Poland and in Russia. Anarchist groups started spreading all over Russia initiating ever new anarchist centres.
In Bialystok [now North East Poland, transl.] the anarchist activities started in 1903. The main slogan in use said that “anarchism is the ideology of the working class, it fights the bourgeois system and supports the workers in their fight for better material conditions” (2). The anarchists agitated also among activists of local political parties: the Social Revolutionaries, the P.P.S. [Polish social-democrat party, transl.] and the Bund [a Jewish socialist party, transl.] winning over people who were not happy with the politics of their party. The main organiser of this initiative was Grzegorz Bruner (ps. Borys) (3). Another anarchist, who used the pseudonym Zajdel (true name not found), was of great help in the agitation among the Jewish inhabitants of Bialystok. The agitation among workers, apprentices and members of the Bund yielded positive effects. The Bund was not very resistant to the anarchist agitation and got into a crisis.
By the end of 1903 it had lost 73 members and the anarchists became a strong influential organisation in Bialystok (4). They formed an anarchist federation under the name “Internacjonalna Grupa-Walka” [International fighting group, transl.] (5).
In the beginning the anarchists used offprints (in Russian) of articles published in [Kropotkin’s] “Khleb i Wolya” and of pamphlets printed abroad. To have more propaganda materials they also started to hectograph. In all they hectographed 7 propaganda brochures and 6 proclamations in Yiddish and Russian. After three months the “Internacjonalna Grupa-Walka” had more than 90 activists who helped organise new political organisations and to win over new people.
To stop the loss of members the political parties forbade anarchists to take part in their meetings and their members to engage in discussions with anarchists. But this was not of much help (6).
The anarchist agitators brought literature received from abroad to the factories and persuaded workers to form groups. They printed their pamphlets under harmless titles such as “The Corpse”, “Theft” or “Simon Adler” (7). Their meetings attracted ever larger numbers of workers who read the anarchist literature that came from abroad in ever larger quantities.
In the summer of 1903 the anarchists started terrorist actions. One of these anarchists, Nisel Faber, seriously wounded factory owner Kaczan in the synagogue for his brutal treatment of his workers (8). The same Nisel Faber threw also a bomb into a police office for the dispersal of a peaceful workers’ meeting wounding two police officers and killing two civilians. In 1904 the anarchist Gielinker attacked a prison guard for his bad treatment of prisoners wounding him seriously. Later this Gielinker threw also a bomb into the house of this prison guard killing him (9). Their terrorist acts and pamphlets such as “Niech zginie własność prywatna” [Death to private ownership!, transl.] and “To my i czego chcemy” [That’s us and what we want, transl.] made that from the second half of 1904 onwards the anarchists of Bialystok became a force to be reckoned with in politics. Beginning in 1905 they had also groups in Grodno, Zabludowa, Choroszcz, Wolkowysk, Orel, Krynki and Burzany (10).
As from 1902 there was also an important anarchist centre in Odessa on the Black Sea that in the beginning collaborated with a group of followers of Jan Waclaw Machajski. It became stronger by the arrival from Bialystok of N. Striga (ps. Vladyslav Lapidus). In 1904, after armed resistance, five members were arrested in the house of a worker, among them Sergiey Borysow, one of the first organisers of the anarchist movement in Odessa. But before the end of the year the remaining anarchists had restarted their propaganda and agitation activities already. In November they issued a proclamation in which they said, among other things:
We are pleased to hear them (the socialists, W.K.) speak about concentration of capital, historical truths and that the bourgeoisie must develop. But the workers die of hunger. They are not interested in that kind of things. Those theories are nice for the well-off who have something to lose. But we go hungry in the factories, in the workshops, in the streets, we don’t have the strength to suffer more. How long are we prepared to go on suffering? We are not going to delay the fight to any “to-morrow”, we start fighting now full of hate for the bourgeoisie and for the land owners who live at our cost, and for their supporters who call on us to be humble and to submit to the State that sends its army, puts us in prison and sends us to labour camps when we proclaim our demands and needs. Our fight is a life-and-death struggle that will end with the total annihilation of our enemies. It will not consist of friendly talks and peaceful demonstrations but of armed attacks on private property and the State (11).
This proclamation shows that the workers’ parties active in Odessa had henceforth to reckon with a new ideological adversary. As in Bialystok, neither the Bund, nor the social democrats or the Social Revolutionaries were sufficiently able to deal with the agitation of the anarchists. The workers listened to them and their propaganda for economic terrorism aroused the fighting instincts in the masses (12).
Another place where anarchism developed in then Russia was Nizhyn/Nezhin (Ukrainian: Ніжин), 150 km North East of Kiev, with in 1903 50,000 inhabitants mainly employed in manufacture. Political parties such as the Bund, the Ukrainian Socialist-Democratic Party, the Social-Democratic Workers Party of Russia and the Social Revolutionaries agitated among the students of the Institute for History and Philosophy, among them teachers from nearby villages, so that the institute had a wide cultural influence.
In August 1903 arrived an anarchist emissary from Geneva designed as “R” (name not established) who started agitation among the students (13). At the end of that year Nizhyn/Nezhin had its first anarchist organisation consisting of a number of students of the local gymnasium, a graduate of the school for agriculture and two graduates of the technical school. In Spring 1904 the members started recruiting new members among their colleagues, most successfully at the school for agriculture, so that the anarchist ideas became known in a number of villages of the area (14). Later the anarchist agitation was also directed to workers and apprentices of local industries. At a meeting of the Social-Democrats, anarchist agitators succeeded in winning over two talented members of the party who contributed to the destruction of their organisation and enlarged the number of anarchists. The anarchists won also a number of workers who had been in jail for political activities.
In Autumn 1904 the Nizhyn group had become stable enough to issue a number of proclamations. In addition, they asked the Centre in Geneva to send them writings by Peter Kropotkin, Elisee Reclus and Jean Grave as well as copies of “Khleb i Wolya” (15).
In the middle of 1904 two Russian activists from Austria and an emissary from Bialystok started spreading anarchist ideas in Zhytomyr. At the end of the year an anarchist group had formed there consisting of students of local schools and of workers of a furniture factory, among them former Social Revolutionaries. This group developed into a federation called “Robotnitsy” consisting of a large number of local groups (16). They helped also organise anarcho-communist groups in Cherkassk and Kishinev [now Chişinău in Moldavia, transl.] (17).
This is a translation of chapter 6, pages 38-41, from Wincenty Kolodziej, Anarchizm i Anarchisci w Rosji I Krolewstwie Polskim. Wydawnictwo Adam Marszelek, PL-Torun 1992 89p.
I expect that the footnotes are only of interest to people knowing Polish. I’ll be happy to send them to whoever likes to see them.
18 July 2011
[Beeldmateriaal uit Indre union 68]