Forum topic: Notes on internationalist anarchism in the UK (part 2): From the 1950s to today

5 posts / 0 new
Last post
Forum topic: Notes on internationalist anarchism in the UK (part 2): From the 1950s to today
Printer-friendly version

The discussion that follows was prompted by the article: Notes on internationalist anarchism in the UK (part 2): From the 1950s to today. The discussion was initiated by Devrim.
Below is the discussion so far. Feel free to add your own comments!

On the anarchism article

Two things came to me upon reading this article. The first is that it barely mentions DAM/SolFed, which as well as being an important anarchist organisation in its own right is the UK section of the IWA. This is a serious omission.

The second is given that "the relationship between the ICC and the anarchist/libertarian milieu in Britain has been particularly difficult" how do you propose to get anarchists to read it.

I think admitting that we made a mistake in our charecterisation of the anarchist movement is an important step, but we also have to communicate it to them.




 The historical background to Solfed is examined in the first part of the article, although there is a lot more to be said. I agree that we need to communicate this change of position to the anarchists. I think it would be good to propose this for the libcom library, for example, or to start a thread on libcom linking to the article, but as you know merely posting articles or making links has caused a lot of problems in the recent period, so  we need to think about the best way to get to the actual discussion and avoid all the associated difficulties.


I agree with Devrim that maybe the article could be a point longer and address the ICC's the AF and SolFed in particular. Since it is part of the reason for the change in position was due to ICCers enagaging with members of those two groups on over the years.

Generally, I thought the article was good in that I found out stuff I did not know previously: re the stuff on CWF.  Although Memoth did tell me about the anarchist who knew Engels last time we met in Manchester.  

Finally, while I share the communist critique of anarcho-leftism.  I think the comments about the WSM maybe less then an accurate description of their current position.  


Knowing little or nothing

Knowing little or nothing about anarchism and its history, I very much welcome this informative article. It has done something to dispel my views of anarchists as a bunch of free-wheeling, rabble-rousing individuals whose vital energy and anti-authoritarianism, would for ever be incapable of being put to PROPERLY ORGANIZED good use in the service of the proletarian revolution. Visits to lib com have done little to persuade me I was wrong about this; and the sometimes idiotic treatment of ICC posters there only serves to enrage and confirm what in fact is an uninformed opinion of mine about the whole area. So I was led to a thoughtless dismissal of the whole of anarchism in the way that some of them dismiss the communist left, the contribution of the Boslsheviks, and the need for a Global Organization of Revolutionaries without even a serious thought. But I see now there's more to it than that.

This piece by Amos also throws some light on another area of puzzlement to this reader ie the Chenier affair (sounds like a thriller!) and the what I see as the increasing isolation of the ICC resulting from this, which may have contributed in some way to the later schisms in the organisation. So the last section of the article reads a bit like the ICC coming clean.

And then finally there's this: " At the same time, the anarchists’ suspicious and sometimes uncomradely attitude towards the ICC  has deeper roots in history and theory, above all in relation to the question of the organisation of revolutionaries, and these roots also need to be thoroughly examined. Despite all these obstacles, the appearance since the early 2000s of a new generation of elements attracted to revolutionary ideas, largely mediated through libertarian communism, has provided the possibility of a fresh beginning".

I don't understand the bit about 'the question of the organization of revolutionaries and how the roots of anarchist suspicion(?) about this need to be examined.' ( I don't actually know what it is I don't understand here. Can someone help?). And while cheering the appearance of a new generation of potentially revolutionary elements, it amazes me that they managed to develop and then emerge from libertarian communism! But then my old-fashioned ideas about anarchism are not easy to change. This piece, and others on the site about it though, are helping. Thank you.