Reading List

Reading List

A selection of readings on anarchism and related topics that broadly reflect an anarchist communist perspective.

This reading list is intended to point to a range of useful, shorter, and easier to approach material that would suit readers who are newer to these topics. Apologies in advance, some of the linked works simply do not meet this criteria. All items on this list should be read critically, no political text exists without its debates, controversies, and scandals.

This reading list is incomplete. Suggestions towards improving it are always welcome.

For questions, comments and suggestions on this reading list, please Contact us.

Defining Anarchism

  • What is Anarchism? Workers Solidarity Federation / Zabalaza Books, 1995 / 2018. [Pamphlet first published by the then Workers Solidarity Federation, South Africa, 1995, updated and re-released 2018 by Zabalaza books. A good introductory pamphlet that touches on a range of topics].
  • What is Anarchism? Sam Mbah and I.E. Igariwey, 1997, in African Anarchism, See Sharp Press. [This introductory chapter to African Anarchism does a better job than most; the rest of the book is far less relevant.]
  • Libertarian Communism, A Social Doctrine, Georges Fontenis, 1953, in Manifesto of Libertarian Communism. [A classic, but like all classics not without its problems].
  • We Do Not Fear Anarchy – We Invoke It: A Summary, Robert Graham, 2015. [A summary of Graham’s argument on the origins of the anarchist movement within the First International.]
  • Anarchy and Communism, Carlo Cafiero, 1880. [Summary of an address to the Jura Federation Congress where the question of the communist nature of anarchism was being debated].
  • On Order, Kropotkin, 1881. [Introductory article, in which Kropotkin defends the use of the word ‘anarchy’ to describe the anarchist political tradition]
  • Socialism from Below: Defining Anarchism, Lucien van der Walt and Michael Schmidt*, in Black Flame, 2009, AK Press.
  • Anarkismo Editorial Statement, Anarkismo network, 2005. [A succinct statement of anarchist communist politics adopted by the members of the Anarkismo network.]

On Capitalism

On the State

Reformism or Revolution

Anarchism, Trade Unions, and Syndicalism

On the Ecological Crisis

Anarchist Feminism, Intersectionality and Privilege

See also, the Women and Feminism Reading Guide on Libcom and the Feminism Reading List at anarchopac.

Racism, Colonialism and Imperialism

See aso, Anti-Racism Reading List by anarchopac.

On Organisation

On Violence

On the Russian Revolution

On the Spanish Revolution

Anarchism or Marxism

Footnotes. * Substantial scandal surrounds one of the authors of this work, Michael Schmidt. For background see Alexander Reid Ross on Michael Schmidt, this statement in response from Lucien van der Walt, and this statement from the Institute for Anarchist Theory and History.
I would contend that the chapters from Black Flame included in this reading list are still useful, despite the rather bizarre political history of one of the authors, but ultimately readers will have to make up their own minds.

More to come.

Archives, Reading Lists and Resources compiled by others

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