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4

edmund_the_destroyer wrote

I want to say again how glad I am that I found this site. I had never heard of Bakunin or anything related to libertarian communism before coming here.

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Dumai wrote

bakunin wasn't any kind of communist but i'm glad you know him now!

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edmund_the_destroyer wrote

I'm sorry, maybe I'm misusing terms. Wikipedia labels Bakunin as a 'collectivist anarchist'. I would call that a form of communism. It would be communism without any centralized government and related authoritarian elements.

But isn't it still communism, communal organization of production and no private ownership of the means of production?

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ziq wrote (edited )

Yeah there's very little difference between Bakunin's collectivist anarchism and Kropotkin's communist anarchism. Basically Bakunin wanted a transitionary currency; labour vouchers, while Kropotkin wanted to abolish all forms of currency and establish a gift economy.

Anarcho-Collectivism: Once collectivization took place, workers salaries would be determined in democratic organizations based on the amount of time they contributed to production. These salaries would be used to purchase goods in a communal market. This contrasts with anarcho-communism where wages would be abolished, and where individuals would take freely from a storehouse of goods "to each according to his need."

As you can see, Bakunin was a little more individualistic and so his politics famously clashed with Marx's.

The dispute between Mikhail Bakunin and Karl Marx highlighted the differences between anarchism and Marxism. Bakunin argued—against certain ideas of a number of Marxists—that not all revolutions need to be violent. He also strongly rejected Marx's concept of the "dictatorship of the proletariat", a concept that vanguardist socialism including Marxist–Leninism would use to justify one-party rule from above by a party representing the proletariat. Bakunin insisted that revolutions must be led by the people directly while any "enlightened elite" must only exert influence by remaining "invisible...not imposed on anyone...[and] deprived of all official rights and significance". He held that the state should be immediately abolished because all forms of government eventually lead to oppression.

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edmund_the_destroyer wrote

Thanks very much for clarifying the differences. My first impulse is to align with Bukanin's position on the topics you covered.

If you have a moment, are there any particular reading resources you recommend for all of this? Or should I just look for (English translations of) Bukanin's own writings?

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Dumai wrote (edited )

if you can't read russian or french you'll find bakunin really hard to dive into as a beginner as a lot of his important foundational stuff is still untranslated in english. it'd probably be better to read some basic introductory material to anarchism before anything else, and then when you're ready to move onto bakunin's translated work i'd recommend reading it in tandem with this fantastic biography by mark leier.

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Dumai wrote

this text (pdf warning) might also come in handy, but i've not read all of it yet so i can't comment on it's overall quality (although i've been impressed by what i've read so far)

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edmund_the_destroyer wrote

Thanks! I will examine those.

I try to avoid Amazon because they seem to be the worst of many bad options for shopping on the web (with respect to worker treatment, abuse of copyright and patent law, and so forth).

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Dumai wrote

oh i understand that! it was just the easiest way i could think to link to them.