By Daniel Guérin, Mary Klopper, Noam Chomsky
Publication through Daniel Guérin
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Extra resources for Anarchism, From Theory to Practice
In this a working-class vanguard opposed a state apparatus determined to deny the division which had developed between itself and the masses. From 1919 to 1921, strikes increased in the large cities, in Petrograd especially, and even in Moscow. They were severely repressed, as we shall see further on. Within the directing Party itself a “Workers’ Opposition” arose which demanded a return to the democracy of the soviets and self-management. At the Tenth Party Congress in March 1921, one of its spokesmen, Alexandra Kollontay, distributed a pamphlet asking for freedom of initiative and organisation for the trade unions and for a “congress of producers” to elect a central administrative organ for the national economy.
Kronstadt In February-March 1921, the Petrograd workers and the sailors of the Kronstadt fortress were driven to revolt, the aspirations which inspired them being very similar to those of the Makhnovist revolutionary peasants. The Disputed Term “State” The reader knows by now that the anarchists refused to use the term “State” even for a transitional situation. The gap between authoritarians and libertarians has not always been very wide on this score. ” The anarchists soon saw, however, that it was rather dangerous for them to use the same word as the authoritarians while giving it a quite different meaning.
Their presence gave rise to violent incidents, since the social democrats used their superior numbers to suppress all argument from their opponents. At the Brussels Congress of 1891 the libertarians were booed and expelled. However, many working-class delegates from England, Italy, and Holland, though they were indeed reformists, withdrew in protest. The next congress was held in Zurich in 1893, and the social democrats claimed that in the future they could exclude all non-trade union organisations which did not recognise the necessity for “political action,” that is to say, the conquest of bourgeois power by the ballot.