|Past Quotes of the Week|
Our revolution must
be an immediate revolution in our daily lives; anything else is
not a revolution, but a demand that people once again do what they
do not what to do and hope that that this time, somehow, the compensation
will be enough.
If we are afraid
to fight for our freedom, then we have already
Until our most fantastic demands are met, fantasy will be at war with society. Society will attempt the supression of fantasy, but fantasy will spring up again and again, infecting the youth, waging urban guerrilla warfare, sabotaging the smooth functioning of bureacracies, waylaying the typist on her way to the water-cooler, kidnapping the executive between the office and home, hiding in the chambers of high office, gradually tightening its control, eventually emerging into the streets, waging pitched battles and winning (its victory is inevitable).
We are the vanguard of fantasy.
Where we live is liberated territory in which fantasy moves about freely at all hours of the day, from which it mounts its attacks on occupied territory.
My utopia is an environment that works so well we can run wild in it.
We are all undesirables.
We are full of optimism. We are the future.
Everyone can feel
the nothingness, the void, just beneath the surface of everyday routines
That the mass bleeds,
that it is being robbed and exploited, I know as well as our vote-baiters.
But I insist that not the handful of parasites, but the mass itself is
responsible for this horrible state of affairs. It clings to its masters,
loves the whip, and is the first to cry Crucify! the moment a protesting
voice is raised against the sacredness of capitalistic authority or any
other decayed institution. Yet how long would authority and private property
exist, if not for the willingness of the mass to become soldiers, policemen,
jailers, and hangmen.
Yes, authority, coercion,
and dependence rest on the mass, but never freedom or the free unfoldment
of the individual, never the birth of a free society. The Socialist demagogues
know that as well as I, but they maintain the myth of the virtues of the
majority, because their very scheme of life means the perpetuation of
The reasonable man
adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one tries to adapt the world
to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
Warning: The word
"revolution," which is used constantly throughout these pages
with an unironic naiveté, may be amusing or off-putting to the
modern reader, convinced as he is that effective resistance to the status
quo is impossible and therefore not even worth considering. Gentle reader,
we ask that you suspend your disbelief long enough to at least contemplate
whether or not such a thing would be worthwhile if it were possible;
and then that you suspend it further, long enough to recognize this disbelief
for what it is - despair!
What is freedom?
What is slavery? Does man's freedom consist in revolting against all laws?
We say No, in so far as laws are natural, economic, and social laws, not
authoritatively imposed but inherent in things, in relations, in situations,
the natural development of which is expressed by those laws. We say Yes
if they are political and juridical laws, imposed by men upon men: whether
violently by the right of force; whether by deceit and hypocrisy - in
the name of religion or any doctrine whatever; or finally, by dint of
the fiction, the democratic falsehood called universal suffrage.
Life will not be
a pyramid with the apex sustained by the bottom, but an oceanic circle
whose centre will be the individual.
this day of wonders no one will say that a thing or an idea is worthless
because it is new. To say it is impossible because it is difficult is
again not in consonance with the spirit of the age. Things undreamt of
are daily being seen, the impossible is ever becoming possible.
It's sadly predictable
that the only way you can come up with a way to celebrate the liberation
you feel at leaving the old system behind is by coming up with a "system
of liberation", as if such a thing could exist - but that's what
we can expect from those who have never known anything other than systems
and systematizing, I guess.
can either passively continue on the road to utter domestication and destruction
or turn in the direction of joyful upheaval, passionate and feral embrace
of wildness and life that aims at dancing on the ruins of clocks, computers
and that failure of imagination and will called work. Can we justify our
lives by anything less than such a politics of rage and dreams?
will be a marvellous thing - the true personality of man - when we see
it. It will grow naturally and simply, flower-like, or as a tree grows.
It will not be at discord. It will never argue or dispute. It will not
prove things. It will know everything. And yet it will not busy itself
about knowledge. It will have wisdom. It's value will not be measured
by material things. It will have nothing. And yet it will have everything,
and whatever one takes from it, it will still have, so rich will it be.
It will not always be meddling with others, or asking them to be like
itself. It will love them because they will be different. And yet while
it will not meddle with others it will help all, as a beautiful thing
helps us, by being what it is. The personality of man will be very wonderful.
It will be as wonderful as the personality of a child.
liberty of man consists solely in this: that he obeys natural laws because
he has himself recognized them as such, and not because they have been
externally imposed upon him by any extrinsic will whatever, divine or
human, collective or individual.
Workers and their
families may starve to death in the New World Order of economic rationality,
but diamond necklaces are cheaper in elegant New York shops, thanks to
the miracle of the market.
The State is a condition,
a certain relationship between human beings, a mode of human behavior;
we destroy it by contracting other relationships, by behaving differently.
Of all social theories
Anarchism alone steadfastly proclaims that society exists for man, not
man for society. The sole legitimate purpose of society is to serve the
needs and advance the aspiration of the individual. Only by doing so can
it justify its existence and be an aid to progress and culture.
There is a time when
the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you sick at heart,
that you can't take part; you can't even passively take part, and you've
got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers,
upon all the apparatus, and you've got to make it stop. And you've got
to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it, that unless
you're free, the machine will be prevented from working at all!
People who talk about
revolution and class struggle without referring explicitly to everyday
life, without understanding what is subversive about love and what is
positive in the refusal of constraints, such people have corpses in their
No theory, no ready-made
system, no book that has ever been written will ever save the world. I
cleave to no system, I am a true seeker.
An error does not
become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does the truth become
error because nobody will see it.
this stage of history, either...the general population will take control
of its own destiny and will concern itself with community interests guided
by values of solidarity and sympathy and concern for others or alternately
there will be no destiny for anyone to control.
The genius of our
ruling class is that it has kept a majority of the people from ever questioning
the inequality of a system where most people drudge along, paying heavy
taxes for which they get nothing in return.
Only after the last
tree has been cut down,