Anarchist Theory and Practice

Steve Wright sj at
Thu Apr 27 19:00:15 MDT 1995

I'm intrigued by how the anarchist/marxist distinction has been
constructed in a few recent posts, following Rebecca's rightly indignant
post 'Re: Anarchism'. To my mind, the dividing line cuts *through both
camps* at a sharply different angle, separating on the one hand those who
wish to contribute to the process of class self-activity and autonomy from and
against capital AND the state, from those who on the other hand view
themselves as what Marx once sarcastically dubbed the proletariat's
'providential saviours'.

Unfortunately, far too many 'marxists' have been part of the latter camp.

Fortunately, there are still marxists for whom, like social anarchists,
'the emancipation of the working class must be...' - we all know how it goes.
And while changes in class composition have, I suspect, made obsolete
not class struggle itself, of course, but many of the organisational forms
once held dear by marxists and anarchists alike, there are still many
positive things for those of us who remain marxists to glean from
anarchist practice - in Spain and Italy, for example - just as the
disastrous aspects of those experiences (e.g. leaders becoming
'autonomous' only from their class) have their own counterparts in the
marxist camp.

Steve Wright

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