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The Cynosure

  Michael Bakunin
  William Godwin
  Emma Goldman
  Peter Kropotkin
  Errico Malatesta
  Pierre-Joseph Proudhon
  Max Stirner
  Murray Bookchin
  Noam Chomsky
  Bright but Lesser Lights
  Cold Off The Presses
  Anarchist History
  Worldwide Movements
  First International
  Paris Commune
  Haymarket Massacre
  Spanish Civil War
Ernest Alfred Vizetelly. The Anarchists: Their Faith and Their Record. Turnbull and Spears Printers, Edingurgh, 1911.




     Birth, Parentage and Early Life of Michael Bakunin. His personal Appearance His early Residence at Berlin and Paris--He takes to Revolutionary Courses.--His Exploits in Austria, Prussia, and Saxony (1848- 9)--He is sentenced to Death three Times, but reprieved--His Relations, the Muravieffs--Exiled to Siberia, he escapes to California- State of Europe early in 1859--Bakunin develops Anarchist Ideas--His Stay in London--Origin and Establishment of the International Working Men's Association-- Karl Marx, its Dictator--Bakunin's mysterious Movements--He joins the International--His Rivalry with Marx--His Speech at a Congress--He foments with Cluseret a Rising of the Reds at Lyons (1870)--His final Split with Marx He founds the Federation Jurassienne--His Force of Anarchist Spies and Missionaries --His wealthy Partisans--His Death and his Writings.

     IN Zola's novel, "Germinal," there are occasional hints of a mysterious personage, who never actually appears in the story, but who is said to hold modern civilization in the hollow of his hand, and to be the master of Souvarine that mild- mannered Nihilist who beguiles his spare time in playing with a pet rabbit, but who ends by almost destroying the Voreux pit after the miners' great strike. The man whom Zola had in his mind when referring to that mysterious personage was Michael Alexandrovitch Bakunin, grand master of that secret "Order of International Brotherhood," whose members flitted here and there through Europe on missions which only too often signified death and destruction.

     Bakunin's native spot was Pryamukhino in the Torshok district of the Government of Twer, belonging to what is known as greater Russia; and he came into the world in that year of stress and storm, 1814, a short time after Napoleon's first overthrow, and while the Russian Emperor was fording it in Paris, with his Cossacks encamped in the Champs Elysees. The Bakunin family were extensive landowners, and belonged to the aristocracy; and one might have thought it unlikely that any scion of theirs would become one of the nineteenth century's foremost Revolutionaries. Yet history tells us that members of the nobility have helped on many Revolutions. There were peers who sided with the Parliament against Charles I. There were a hundred scions of the old noblesse prominent among those who overthrew the Monarchy of the Bourbons. Even Robespierre belonged to the nobility of the gown. There were nobles also among those who compassed the death of Gustavus III. of Sweden. There were nobles again among the men who, when Napoleon was First Consul, attempted to destroy him by means of the infernal machine of the Rue Nicaise. Further, Orsini, who attempted to blow up the third Napoleon, was descended from one of the greatest aristocratic houses of Italy. In Russia, as the history of Nihilism proves, the number of nobles who have figured on the Revolutionary side is beyond computation, and Michael Bakunin, from whom the Nihilist movement took a part of its creed, was not the first among them.

     Being intended by his family for the career of arms he was sent to the Cadet School at St. Petersburg, which he left in 1835 with the rank of ensign in the artillery of the Imperial Guard. Remembering what he was like when we saw him in Switzerland, in his last years, it is difficult for us to picture him as a soldier, erect and trim in some smart uniform, for at sixty years of age his bearing was ungainly, and his general appearance slovenly in the extreme. But he had evidently possessed great physical strength, and his voice had remained imperious, like that of a man accustomed to command. The general aspects of his massive figure recalled that of the late Lord Salisbury, the slight stoop being identical with the English statesman's. The flat yet fleshy nose, however, was intensely Russian--of that type of Russian, beneath which' as Napoleon said, one will find the Tartar. In the general shape of the head there was again something of Lord Salisbury, blended with something suggestive of Gambetta. But both the Englishman and the Frenchman were much better looking than Bakunin. His brow, lofty like theirs, was crowned, to the last days, by a tangle of wavy, frizzy hair, which fell to his shoulders. An expression of great power shone in the baggy eyes, shaded by heavy brows. Below the mustache appeared a thick and sensual underlip, and then came a full, unkempt, frizzy beard, blanched in parts, and much of the Salisbury pattern. On the whole, it was a strong and somewhat repulsive face, one which might have appealed to Donatello, when in one of his realistic moods, and even more so to Rodin.

     From what we have said it will be gathered that Bakunin scarcely suggested a man subjected in his youth to military training. In point of fact he remained in the army but a very short time. The military profession was distasteful to him. He was not yet a Revolutionary, but some little knowledge came to him of the Hegelian philosophy, which, springing from the doctrines of Kant, Schelling and Fichte, was bringing about an evolution of German thought; and obtaining leave of absence from his military duties Bakunin returned home for a time, and there studied such German works as had come into his hands. In 1840 he repaired to Berlin where he again became absorbed in philosophical studies; and then, attracted by the general unrest in France, where Louis Philippe was reigning, he repaired thither and made a number of friends among people of more or less unconventional or advanced views. They included George Sand the novelist, whom " Indiana" and "Consuelo" had already rendered famous, and to whom Bakunin was undoubtedly attracted by the outspokenness with which various social questions were handled in her writings. But he also met Pierre Joseph Proudhon, one of the Anarchist notabilities mentioned in our first chapter, and his intercourse with that leader of advanced thought greatly influenced his mind.

     Even in those days, however, the Russian Government had plenty of spies abroad. It heard that young Bakunin kept bad company in Paris, that he mixed also with Polish exiles, and even dabbled in Socialism with sundry Swiss reformers; and thus he suddenly received a peremptory order to return to his native country. As he refused to do so, all the property he had inherited from his parents was confiscated to the Czar. That was certainly not the right way to cure Bakunin of Revolutionary tendencies. It only confirmed him in them, and besides writing fiery articles for " La Reforme " (a journal edited by Flocon, who at the French Revolution of 1848 became secretary of the Provisional Government), he made speeches to the Polish refugees in Paris, urging an alliance between them and the Revolutionaries of Russia with the object of freeing their respective countries. That suggestion was answered by a peremptory order to quit French territory in twenty- four hours, the Russian ambassador having complained to the French government. Bakunin thereupon took refuge in Belgium where he made some very ardent disciples, notably at Liege and Verviers. In later years, when he had finally adopted Anarchist principles, quite a colony of people believing in his teaching was to be found in the valley of the Vesdre. But Louis Philippe, King of the French, was overthrown (February, 1848), and Bakunin thereupon returned to Paris, where several of his friends had suddenly risen to positions of authority or influence. Is it true that the Government of the new French Republic gave him a special secret mission to stir up revolutionary agitation across the Rhine ? That view has been held by men worthy of credit, still there is no actual proof that such was the case. Bakunin certainly did repair to Germany and Austria, but he may well have acted on his own initiative, carried away by the ardor of his temperament. The suspicious matter was that he suddenly had a considerable sum of money at his disposal and that its origin was a mystery. In any case he evinced remarkable activity and daring throughout that " Year of Revolutions," 1848. He helped to stir up the people of Prague against the Hapsburgs, he was with those of Berlin in their rising against the Hohenzollerns, and he became conspicuous among those of Dresden and Chemnitz who rebelled, for a moment victoriously, against the Saxon King. The latter fled in terror from his capital, but a Prussian army brought him back there; and soon afterwards Bakunin was taken prisoner at Chemnitz.

     Now came, in rapid succession, some of the most extraordinary episodes in any Revolutionary's career. Assuredly it is not often that a man is sentenced to death on three successive occasions by the judges of three different governments, and yet emerges from those sentences unscathed either by the firing- party's bullets, the hangman's rope or the headsman's ax. Yet such was Bakunin's experience. Arrested by the Prussian soldiery he was carried to that famous Saxon state prison, the fortress of Konigstein, which rises nine hundred feet above the Elbe in that region of green sandstone heights known as Saxon Switzerland. At Konigstein during the Seven Years War, had Augustus III. Of Saxony sought a refuge with his treasures and his archives; there, too, had Frederick Augustus II. found a safe asylum when driven from Dresden by Bakunin and the other Revolutionaries. Now it was Bakunin's turn to be pent within the walls of the fortress which Napoleon cannonaded in vain. Go there to- day, and they will still show you the cell in which the Founder of Anarchism was imprisoned.

     With Bakunin were Huebner, a member of the Saxon Provisional Government, and Heintze, another leader of the abortive Revolution. They were brought to trial, convicted and sentenced to death; but although, from the standpoint of the Saxon Crown, Bakunin was one of the guiltiest of those who had endeavored to overturn the monarchy, he was to his great astonishment, reprieved, his sentence being commuted to one of imprisonment for life. But at this juncture Austria claimed him, for had he not incited the Czechs of Prague against their Hapsburg ruler ? Saxony admitted that it was so, and Bakunin was therefore speedily surrendered to the Austrians. Tried at Prague, he was for the second time condemned to death; but, more fortunate than many Bohemian and Hungarian patriots of those days, he again escaped the supreme penalty.

     However, his troubles were by no means over, for the Russian Government now demanded the surrender of his person. Austria granted it, and Bakunin (who had probably ceased to be astonished at anything) was tried once more, sentenced to death, and again reprieved. By .| order of the Emperor Nicholas, this Russian noble who had become an international Revolutionist, was cast into one of the dungeons of the famous Petropawlowski prison where he remained for several years. It has been said that he spent part of the time in one of the sebaceous cells of Schlusselburg, the oubliettes of that terrible lake- fortress whence very few prisoners have emerged alive; but that is not certain. At all events Bakunin was able to endure his captivity, and in 1857 the Emperor Alexander II. commuted his detention into exile to Siberia.

     The governor of that province then happened to be a member of the well- known Muravieff family, to which Bakunin, through his mother, was closely related. These Muravieffs were men whose natures greatly varied. There was Muravieff- Apostol, an early champion of Russian freedom, who was hanged by order of Nicholas I. In 1826 there was Muravieff- Karsky so called because it was he who besieged Kars during the Crimean War, a man of high character, fully alive to the heroism of Fenwick Williams, and his starving forces, and desirous, as be himself put it, of " arranging a capitulation that would satisfy the demands of war, without outraging humanity." But there was also Michael Muravieff the Hangman, the terror of the Lithuanian Poles, the man who stamped out rebellion by giving the significant order to take no prisoners, who caused wounded insurgents to be dispatched on the battlefield, priests to be executed, women to be flogged.

     Fortunately for Bakunin, the Muravieff who governed Siberia at the time of his deportation thither, was not the ferocious Michael, who would have taken no account whatever of a prisoner's relationship to himself, but Muravieff- Amursky, who was a very different man. He derived his appellation of Amursky from the circumstance that it was he who had added to the Russian Empire those spacious territories watered by the Amur, whence, in recent times, the Muscovite forces descended into Manchuria to be driven back by the power of the Japanese.

     Muravieff- Amursky treated his kinsman Bakunin with humanity, leniency even. All sorts of regulations were relaxed in his favour, and in some degree he was even able to pursue his philosophical studies, but he found himself far removed from civilization, and was eager to return to it. In the prime of life, a man of powerful will and great physical vigor, he felt that he could dare and endure anything to regain his freedom, and he therefore resolved on an attempt at escape. We know not whether his flight was connived at, but, in any case, where so many had failed, he succeeded. After suffering countless hardships he reached the coast, was able to take ship, and landed in California, a free man once more. That was early in the year 1859.

     Here let us pause for a moment to consider what must have been the feelings of a man who, for ten years or so, had undergone such experiences as Bakunin's. He had certainly been a Revolutionary prior to 1848, but since then the iron had entered deeply into his soul, and he came forth from prison and exile embittered beyond all measure, given over to the most extreme ideas, hating authority in every form, inimical to the whole constitution of society, and now that he was free again, disposed to carry Revolutionary courses farther than he had ever done before.

     That mood of his will be still better understood on recalling the political and social conditions of the time. What was the position of the masses, here, in England, fifty- two years ago? What was their position abroad? How much or rather how little liberty prevailed in most of the countries of Europe? What political and social rights, if any, did the working- classes possess there? Despotism had revived after the popular explosion of '48. Russia continued in absolute bondage; Alexander II. had not yet freed the serfs. Poland was preparing for the final effort of despair. Austria ruled her subjects with an iron hand. Prussia was beginning to develop militarism The rest of Germany was given over to kinglets, princeliest and dukelets who, even when constitutions had been wrung from them by their subjects, had curtailed them or kept them confined within the narrowest limits

     France meanwhile was in the hands of Napoleon III. who had not yet relaxed the stringent personal power which he had exercised since the coup d'etat, and who was only just preparing to redeem, in part, his pledges to the House of Savoy. Much of northern Italy was Austrian territory; elsewhere granddukes were kept on their thrones by the power of Austrian bayonets. Bomba reigned at Naples. Garibaldi's greatest page was as yet unwritten. Greece was growing more and more restless under Otho of Bavaria. Spain, the land of pronunciamientos, had become, under the sovereignty of Isabella II., the prey now of one marshal and now of another. Even in the most liberally governed countries the sum of public liberties and rights was nothing compared with what it is to- day. In most directions it was the aristocracies and not the democracies that ruled.

     Thus one can form some idea of what must have been the feelings of a man like Bakunin when he emerged from ten years of captivity, swayed in part by personal grievances, and in part by the aspect of Europe as he beheld it. All that had to be changed, radically, completely Tinkering was of no use. No government could be trusted. There must be a clean sweep of everything No more authority, no more laws, no more control of any kind, but a return to the times when " there was no king in Israel," and when " every man did that which was right in his own eyes." Never again ought anyone to have cause to say: "Laws grind the poor, and rich men rule the law"; but one and all should be able to repeat:

     "I am as free as nature first made man, Ere the base laws of servitude began, When wild in woods the noble savage ran."

     That Bakunin's great desire on recovering his freedom was to see the existing social fabric overthrown, and replaced by an anarchical state--a universal system of laissez faire, as Herbert Spencer has put it, is certain, but some time was yet to elapse before he could give full play to his ideas. From America he made his way to London, where he arrived in 1860 or 1861, and where, among other Russian exiles, he found Alexander Hertzen and Ogareff, those early Nihilists who were then issuing a famous Revolutionary organ, the " Kolokol," otherwise " The Bell." For a while Bakunin assisted them with his pen, and although much of the " Kolokol's " philosophy was too deep to be grasped by average minds, his own articles were quite explicit, and distinctly anarchical in their tendency. When the great Polish Insurrection of 1863 broke out Bakunin became anxious to repair to Lithuania, but could get no farther than Malmo in Sweden, whence, fearing arrest, he made his way disguised and by devious routes to Switzerland, then the only continental asylum open to the political refugee.

     We must now turn aside for a moment. Already as far back as 1847, when the Chartist agitation was reaching a climax in England, Karl Marx, the famous German Socialist, who was four years younger than Bakunin, had drawn up, in conjunction with his friend Engels, a manifesto calling on the proletarians of every country to band themselves together for their rights and liberties.

     The principles on which an international society of workers might be established were defined in that manifest, but several years elapsed before such a society was founded At a Congress on works of benevolence held at Brussels in 1856, a Bavarian delegate suggested the formation of some such institution with the object of effecting an international agreement in regard to hours of labour, salaries and similar matters, in order to lessen economic competition, and improve the circumstances of the working classes generally. Nothing was done, however, until September 1864, when at a meeting in favour of the Poles, held at St. Martin's Hall in London, a speaker laid it down that the Poles were suffering undoubtedly, but that there was a great nation even more oppressed than they--the whole nation of the working classes; and he urged that a cry of deliverance should go forth from that meeting.

     This appeal led to a Congress at Brussels in the ensuing year, when a committee was selected to draft the constitution of an " International Working Men's Association." Karl Marx chiefly framed or inspired the statutes which were afterwards endorsed by a Congress held in September 1866 at Geneva, where some sixty delegates, nearly a third of whom were Frenchmen, assembled. In 1867 came a Congress at Lausanne, followed by one at Brussels in 1868, when the Socialist views of the delegates became extremely prominent, and began to inspire the Continental Governments with alarm.

     Bakunin meantime had been flitting from Switzerland to France, thence to Belgium, and thence to Switzerland again At this period of his life he was constantly disappearing, then suddenly turning up unexpectedly in some out of the way place. When Berezowski the Pole attempted to shoot Czar Alexander II. in the Bois de Boulogne in 1867, Bakunin was believed to be in Paris. But the French police did not find him there. For three months, indeed, he lay quite perdu, in some unknown spot. This was the time when the legend began of the mysterious leader of a secret force of Revolutionaries, who threatened every throne in Europe. Outwardly, however, Bakunin was merely a member of a certain League of Peace and Liberty established in Switzerland, and whose views seemed to him to be far too moderate. He attended this League's Congress at Berne late in 1868, and urged the adoption of a much more advanced policy, in which course he was supported by Elisee Reclus, the well- known French geographer, who had become one of his disciples, as well as by Jaclard, who afterwards figured in the Paris Commune. But out of IIO delegates only thirty voted on Bakunin's side; and on finding themselves beaten these thirty men seceded and formed a so- called Alliance of the Social Democracy, which, in the ensuing year, adhered in fractions to the International Working Men's Association, of which Karl Marx was, as we have indicated, the presiding genius.

     There was not room for two such men as Marx and Bakunin in the same organizations. Each had a powerful will, and the domineering instinct was strong in both of them. Neither could brook a rival. Besides, there were important points of difference between their respective theories; and thus a struggle as to who should be the master, who should lay down the law to the rest of the Association, became inevitable. That Bakunin, with his Anarchist tendencies, should have sought to impose his will on others, may, at first sight, seem somewhat remarkable, but either he was unwilling as yet to preach the absolute negation of all authority, or else-- what is more likely--he limited that negation to all authority but his own.

     At this time the International was in a flourishing state, ever recruiting more and more adherents from among working- class organizations all the world over, to such a point indeed that " The Times " declared that one had to go back to the early days of Christianity to find a parallel for any such rapid adoption of principles and increase of numbers. On September 5, 1869, the Association's annual Congress opened at Basle, and Bakunin figured conspicuously in the proceedings. He and his followers represented the Communist system, whilst the Marxian majority was Collectivist. A bitter conflict soon began between Bakunin and Marx's representative, Outine. By fifty- four votes to four (sixteen delegates abstaining) the Congress declared itself in favour of abolishing all property rights in land, but not in buildings or in industrial capital. Further, a motion of Bakunin's party for the abolition of inheritances was defeated.

     Tossing his mane of hair and brandishing his fist, whilst he glowered at the Marxite majority, Bakunin angrily declared: " I do not want merely the soil to become general property, I want all wealth to be the same ! There must be a universal social liquidation-- we must have the abolition of the State both politically and juridically. Individual property is the appropriation by an individual of the fruits of the general toil. I demand the destruction of all existing national and territorial States, and on their ruins the raising of an international State formed of all the millions of the workers, a State which it is the International's duty to constitute by uniting the different communes in a general alliance This implies complete social reorganization from top to bottom." A manifesto of his party emphasized his views by proclaiming atheism, and calling for the complete abolition of all class distinctions, the political, economical, and social equality of both sexes, and the substitution of a world- wide union of free associations for all existing authoritarian governments.

     The Congress separated, leaving Marx's party still preponderant, but the Anarchist idea was steadily developing and spreading. By this time there had been an exchange of views between various governments respecting the tendencies of the international Working Class Association. Much of its propaganda was carried on from Paris where the authorities of the Second Empire endeavored to suppress it. There were several prosecutions in the earlier part of 1870, but the Franco- German War suddenly broke out, and all became confusion.

     Bakunin remained in Switzerland quietly watching the course of events until the fall of Napoleon III., when he resolved on action. Among his associates at this period was " General " Cluseret, a Parisian by birth and a soldier of fortune by inclination, who had originally belonged to the French army (fighting in the Crimea), but had afterwards served with Garibaldi, and with the Federals in the United States. Immediately after Sedan Cluseret and Bakunin began to stir up trouble in the south of France, notably at Marseilles and Lyons. The Government of National Defence, proclaimed in Paris, was far too moderate for advanced Republicans, and when Challemel- Lacour repaired to Lyons as its prefect he found his authority repudiated. A communalist administration had been set up in the form of a self- constituted Committee of Public Safety, and the red flag waved over the Hotel- de- Ville. A number of so- called reactionaries had been imprisoned, and Lyons (as personified by its Public Safety men) claimed to be a law unto herself, regardless of the rest of France. Challemel- Lacour had to parley with the Committee, but he eventually secured some degree of authority, and was able to release the political prisoners and proceed with the election of a municipal council. But the extremist party was not yet subdued. On September 28 (1870) it attempted a coup- de- main, under the joint direction of Cluseret and Bakunin. For a while Challemel- Lacour became their prisoner, but the national guards, who were loyal to the National Defence Government, released him, and the rising was suppressed.] Bakunin and Cluseret sought safety in flight, the former returning to Switzerland.

     Several members of the International figured in the Commune of Paris after the Franco- German war, among them being Amouroux, Avrial, Beslay, Dereure, Franckel, Benoit Malon, Pindy, Serailler, Theisz, Vaillant and Varlin, but their influence was by no means great. They were mainly Marxists, and were soon outstripped by their more revolutionary colleagues, some of whom, such as Delescluze, were simply Jacobins, whilst others inclined more to the views of Bakunin.

     Early in 1872 the latter promoted the foundation of a new branch of the International, calling itself the Federation Jurassienne; 3 and it was as its representative that he attended a Congress held at the Hague later in the year, when came the final great split between him and Marx. At this Congress Bakunin and his partisans demanded that the General Council of the International (which Council was simply Marx's instrument) should be invested with less power; but the demand was rejected, Marx was confirmed in his dictatorial authority and, in the end, the Bakunin party was expelled. There upon the Blanquists, otherwise the followers of Auguste Blanqui, the old French Revolutionist, noted for his aphorism " Neither any God nor any master," withdrew from the Association, being also opposed to Marx's ascendancy and largely in sympathy with his rival.

     Bakunin's organization, the Federation Jurassienne, whilst remaining nominally a branch of the International (it is still so described in its bulletins for the year 1875) became more particularly a vehicle for the diffusion of Anarchist principles. It recruited the majority of its adherents in Eastern France, Switzerland and Northern Italy, and was soon represented not only by its bulletin but also by a periodical, " L'Avant- Garde," published at Geneva and edited by Paul Brousse. Meantime the decline of the International and its influence had begun, being precipitated by the transfer of the central organization to New York, a step which was resolved upon in order to screen it both from the hostility of envious rivals and from that of European governments. Between the various sects war still continued, and it was in vain that the directorate proclaimed from New York that the principle of authority was far superior to that of anarchy. In 1873, Karl Marx being anxious to count his forces, the International's last notable Congress was held at Geneva. The dissidents retorted by setting up a rival Congress, and from that moment, though, as is well known, most of the International's principles have survived, it became virtually dead as an organization.

     In a sense, Bakunin and his followers of the Federation Jurassienne triumphed. Anarchism was on the march, spreading slowly but surely through Europe. That was the work largely of the so-called order of " International Brothers" (one hundred in number), which had been established by Bakunin a few years previously, and which formed, first, a kind of secret police force to " spy out the land" in one or another country and watch the doings of hostile governments, and, secondly, a band of missionaries designed to spread the new doctrines far and wide. For a short time yet Bakunin, from his place of retirement at Lugano, where we once saw him, was able to watch over the doings of his emissaries. How he lived was a mystery to outsiders, for he had no visible means of subsistence. Strange as it may appear, however, some of the partisans of this man, who had set himself the task of demolishing Society, were well provided with the goods of this world. There were Russian exiles, who on leaving their country had contrived to bring considerable sums with them, and money was undoubtedly often handed to Bakunin for purposes of propaganda. One of his wealthiest adherents was the Italian Count Carlo Cafiero, of whom we shall have occasion to speak again, and who, so old- time members of the sect asserted, spent a fortune for the cause, besides becoming the first militant Anarchist in his own country. While directing the Anarchist propaganda Bakunin himself, in his last years, made more than one stealthy visit to France and Italy. The Revolutionary spirit was still strong within him, and he or his emissaries even as Zola indicated in " Germinal," influenced man>; a riotous strike. But a life of hardship, toil and effort had undermined his natural vigor, and he did not live to see the real fruits of his agents' endeavors--the application of force to his theories, the Propaganda by Deed which resolved itself into murder, robbery and the destruction of property. In the spring of 1876 he was at Berne, conferring with some of his partisans when his last illness fell upon him. It was of brief duration; on June 13 he died, being sixty- two years old. Among the disciples who attended his funeral were Elisee Reclus, Paul Brousse, Salvioni, J. Guillaume and Jankowsky.

     Bakunin wrote largely, and, as we mentioned in our first chapter, there are numerous contradictions among the views which he set forth at various times. The present- day Anarchist, according to his particular group, accepts some of Bakunin's principles and rejects others, often explaining that if he does so it is because Bakunin was at times under one or another " pernicious " influence, in such wise that his teaching cannot be taken in its entirety. There is no general agreement as to what should be adopted and what left aside. Nevertheless> Bakunin's teachings have to be reckoned with, and it is positive that he was the founder of the militant Anarchism of our times. Here in England his best- known tract is probably " God and the State," directed against the authority both of the Deity and of the Law. His " Revolutionary Catechism," his " Principles of Revolution," of both of which privately, perhaps one might say secretly, printed English versions exist, his " Knouto- Germanic Empire " and his essay on " Mazzini's Political Theology" may also be mentioned. He wrote several other pamphlets in Russian or French, and his correspondence with his more prominent adherents was often most voluminous, some letters being of such great length as to form real essays on one or another point of Anarchist "doctrine."

     Let us now see how the movement he had started progressed after his death.

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