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HIST 1955 No gods, no masters: Histories of Anarchism


HIST 1955 No gods, no masters: Histories of Anarchism (HA-AS)

Tuesday and Thursday: 12:20-1:10 plus discussion

Professor Raymond Craib

Anarchism. What is it good for?  A political philosophy and approach to social organization that arose simultaneous with other grand  “–isms,” anarchism, perhaps more than any other idea and practice, has been condensed down by its critics and observers into a vague set of often contradictory caricatures. Is ‘it’ characterized by bohemian communities of nihilists, their rebellion culturally innovative but politically impotent, book-ended by Friedrich Nietzsche and Johnny Rotten; or is ‘it’ individualist libertarians who walk in the ideological footsteps of Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman rather than Mikhail Bakunin and Peter Kropotkin; or, most famously, is ‘it’ a murky underworld of conspiratorial bomb throwers, held together less by bonds of solidarity than by a commitment to violence?  This course provides some relief from such limited and constraining perspectives by taking anarchism seriously as a lived tradition of direct, non-hierarchical democracy. (non-US)

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