Contents of No. 42
Alexander Berkman believed that “Anarchist books, with few exceptions, are not accessible to the understanding of the average reader. It is the common failing of most works dealing with social questions that they are written in the assumption that the reader is already familiar to a considerable extent with the subject, which is generally not the case at all. As a result there are very few books treating of social problems in a sufficiently simple and intelligible manner.”
He set out to remedy this deficiency by writing an “ABC of Anarchism” which now appears in a welcome new edition. The author begins:
“I consider anarchism the most rational and practical conception of a social life in freedom and harmony. I am convinced that its realisation is a certainty in the course of human development. The time of that realisation will depend on two factors: first, on how soon existing conditions will grow physically and spiritually unbearable to considerable portions of mankind, particularly to the labouring classes; and secondly, on the degree in which views will become understood and accepted.
“Our social institutions are founded on certain ideas; as long as the latter are generally believed, the institutions built on them are safe. Government remains strong because people think political authority and legal compulsion necessary. Capitalism will continue as long as such an economic system is considered adequate and just. The weakening of the ideas which support the evil and oppressive present-day conditions means the ultimate breakdown of government and capitalism. Progress consists in abolishing what man has outlived and substituting in its place a more suitable environment.”
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Other issues of ANARCHY
VOLUME 1, 1961: 1. Sex-and-Violence, Galbraith*; 2. Workers’ control*; 3. What does anarchism mean today?; 4. Deinstitutionalisation; 5. Spain 1936*; 6. Cinema†; 7. Adventure playgrounds*; 8. Anthropology; 9. Prison; 10. MacInnes, Industrial decentralisation.
VOLUME 2, 1962: 11. Paul Goodman, A. S. Neill; 12. Who are the anarchists?; 13. Direct action*; 14. Disobedience; 15. The work of David Wills; 16. Ethics of anarchism, Africa; 17. Towards a lumpenproletariat; 18. Comprehensive schools; 19. Theatre: anger and anarchy; 20. Non-violence, Freud; 21. Secondary modern; 22. Cranston’s dialogue on anarchy.
VOLUME 3, 1963: 23. Housing, squatters, do-it-yourself; 24. Community of Scholars; 25. Technology, cybernetics; 26. CND, Salesmanship, Thoreau; 27. Youth; 28. The future of anarchism; 29. The Spies for Peace Story; 30. The community workshop; 31. Self-organising systems, Beatniks, the State; 32. Crime; 33. Alex Comfort’s anarchism†; 34. Science fiction, Workless teens.
VOLUME 4, 1964: 35. House and home; 36. Arms of the law; 37. Why I won’t vote; 38. Nottingham; 39. Homer Lane; 40. Unions and workers’ control; 41. The land; 42. Indian anarchism; 43. Parents and teachers; 44. Transport.
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