In Memory of Alexander Berkman, Emma Goldman

,
and Voltairine de Cleyre

Mother Earth Volume VII – January 1913
A Few Letters from and to Emma Goldman
The Cause for the Momentous Situation
Philippe L. De Coster, B.Th., D.D.





© May 2014, Skull Press Ebook Publications, Ghent, Belgium – Public
Domain and Non Commercial

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The Cause for the Momentous Situation
By Philippe L. De Coster, B.Th., D.D.
The governmental situation today
among the nations at the four
corners of the earth appeal to the
re-alignment of the educational
systems and processes on all levels,
and that is to be found in the fact
that the light of knowledge and its
benefits should not only be owned
by the capitalists, but should also
penetrate to the lowest grades of
the slowly evolving people.
The same education for all levels
of society should be considered,
but here again we touch a threefold
purpose which all classes have to
hold before itself and which in the
present instance consists of:
1. Educating the working class of the different classes into which humanity
divides itself, so that they become strictly and consciously human one
towards another. Nowadays classes fail to be human with one another.
This was the objective of the impulse which inspired the Renaissance and
which lay behind the work of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the great French
poet, writer and philosopher, political theorist, and this should be the
impulse which is today responsible for modern humanism with its
apparent materialism, an yet its deeply subjective programme and
purpose. This eventually produced a civilisation by the inflow of the light
of knowledge, and not of religion.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau was born in Geneva on June 28, 1712. His mother died
when he was young, and Rousseau was initially brought up by his father, a
watchmaker. He left Geneva aged 16 and travelled around France, where he met
his benefactress, the Baroness de Warens, who gave him the education that
turned him into a philosopher.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau reached Paris in 1742 and soon met Denis Diderot,
another provincial man seeking literary fame. They formed the core of the
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intellectual group, the 'Philosophers'. Eschewing an easy life as a popular
composer, in 1750 he published his first important work 'A Discourse on the
Sciences and the Arts' (1750). Its central theme was that man had become
corrupted by society and civilisation. In 1755, he published 'Discourse on the
Origin of Inequality'. He claimed that original man, while solitary, was happy,
good and free. The vices dated from the formation of societies, which brought
comparisons and, with that, pride. 'The Social Contract' of 1762 suggested how
man might recover his freedom in the future. It argued that a state based on a
genuine social contract would give men real freedom in exchange for their
obedience to a self-imposed law. Jean-Jacques Rousseau described his civil
society as united by a general will, furthering the common interest while
occasionally clashing with personal interest.
Increasingly unhappy in Paris, Rousseau travelled to Montmorency. While there,
he produced 'Èmile', a treatise on education and 'The New Eloise' (1761). This
novel escaped the censors and was the most widely read of all his works. Its
freedom with emotion was in tune with developing romanticism and won him
many important fans. But it scandalised the French authorities, who burned it
and ordered Rousseau's arrest. He travelled to England, a guest of the Scottish
philosopher David Hume, but grew unhappy and secretly returned to France.
In his last 10 years, Rousseau wrote his 'Confessions', justifying himself against
his opponents. He died on 2 July 1778 in Ermenonville, the estate of the
Marquis de Girardin, who had given him refuge.
What Jean-Jacques Rousseau politically suggested was not quite Anarchy, but
was somehow on its way. Although the general will must be arrived at through
reasoned deliberation in the state as a whole, its execution depends upon an
embodiment in the structure of government. Thus, for Rousseau, distinct forms
of government have to do only with the execution of the sovereign laws:
democracy is dangerous in application to particular cases, where the general will
can easily be lost in the pressure of private interests; aristocracy is acceptable so
long as it executes the general will rather than serving the welfare of the ruling
elite; and monarchy clearly raises the temptation to serve private welfare at the
expense of the common good. The appropriate form of government for any state
depends upon the character of its people and even its physical climate, Rousseau
supposed, and its success can be measured easily by the extent to which its
population thrives.
Abuses of power can, of course, threaten the very life of the state. When the
government—properly responsible only for carrying out the general will—takes
upon itself the sovereign responsibility of establishing legal requirements for the
people, the social contract has been broken. For Rousseau, then, the
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establishment of a government is always provisional and temporary, subject to
the continual review by its citizens. Since the legitimacy of the social contract
depends upon the unanimous consent of all the governed, the sovereign general
will is fully expressed only in an assembly of the entire population. Even the
effort to establish a representative legislative body is an illusion, according to
Rousseau, since the general will can be determined only by each for all.
The general will, abstractly considered as a commitment to the welfare of the
whole, is indestructible in principle, Jean-Jacques Rousseau held, even though it
may be overridden by undesirable motives in practice. The original contract
requires perfect unanimity, and major issues should be decided by a major
portion of the population, but simple matters requiring quick action may be
determined by a simple majority. In each case, Rousseau supposed that open
inquiry and debate will converge on awareness by each individual of what is
truly in the best interest of the community as a whole; and that is the general
will. Positions of leadership that require skill should be decided by election,
while those that demand only good sense should be chosen by lot.
2. The education of the advanced thinkers and their students and Anarchists
in applied knowledge expressing as such wisdom and understanding. Here
is work to be done through Anarchism. This is due to two facts:
The masses of men are, as yet, mostly through their different beliefs and
superstitions so little evolved that the task of this group of workers must
therefore be dependent on the success of the educational work of the
world, as it will eventually be exemplified by the ideals and point of view
of the thinkers among the Anarchists.
Let it not be forgotten that the objective of all true governmental control is right
synthesis, leading to right national and interior group activity. The problem
resolves itself into a dual one. First of all, we have the problem of the type of
management as described in Anarchy which should be recognised by the
peoples; and secondly, we have the problem of the methods which should be
employed, so that the chosen respected measures will proceed either by the
method of enforced control, or would be of such a nature that they will evoke a
generously rendered and recognised cooperation. Between these two ways of
working, many changes can be rung, though the system of cooperation, willingly
rendered by an intelligent majority, has never yet been seen. But we are moving
towards such a condition of world consciousness and are on our way towards
experimenting with it.
Anarchy is the highest form of social order, thus the erroneous statement
"chaotic anarchy" is similar to "chaotic order" = "chaotic non-chaotic", i.e. a
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contradiction and meaningless. A system or society cannot at the same time be
both anarchist and non-anarchist, i.e. chaotic. If a system is chaotic, it is not
found in the anarchist quadrant, but left, down or right. Anarchist policy is
typically consistent, flexible, but not opportunistic, related to principles; while
authoritarian policy typically is chaotic, opportunistic, conglomerate aggregates.
Economic-political power corrupts, and total power corrupts absolutely.
Conflicts among "states within the state", and olig- and other archical
corruption, repression, coercion and other chaotic behaviour, i.e. mutually
included, are well known. Chaos is typically found at more than 67%
authoritarian degree below zero, i.e. basically totalitarian systems. Do not forget
the Oslo convention about anarchy vs chaos.
Let me here briefly indicate to you some of the modes of government which
have been tried out and failed.
A Government under the pressure of an ecclesiastical hierarchy as the Roman
Catholic Church. This religious hierarchy is related to the masses of the people
by a chain of religious doctrines developed to keep the human fearfully quiet.
This form of world control is luckily dying out, but is still influencing political
parties among the nations.
Be extremely careful, Religious and guru organizations worldwide are
principally considered as special forms of (political)/administrative rank and
economic hierarchies, i.e. mainly based on psychological power and ruling
techniques, and non atheist ideology. Anarchism is not, and should not, be
expanded towards a totalitarian system. Other kinds of hierarchies, say, in
sports, games, etc., are, as long as it is fair play, mainly not relevant from
anarchist perspective, but many of these sports hierarchies are corrupt as in
football and cycling. Scientific validity is not a political/administrative rank
question, and authority must not be mixed up with competence. This should not
be forgotten in education, research, economics and politics, broadly defined.
A democratic government! This again should be made possible through a right
use of the system of education and by a steady training of the masses to
recognise the finer values of Anarchism, the more correct point of view, the
higher idealism, in a spirit of synthesis and of cooperative unity. Today, such a
thing as a true democracy is completely unknown, and the mass of the people in
the democratic countries are as much at the mercy of the politicians and of the
financial forces as are the people under the rule of dictatorships, enlightened or
unenlightened. These latter might be regarded as selfish idealists. But I would
have you here note the word "idealist"! When, however, the world has in it more
truly awakened people and more thinking men and women, we shall see a
purification of the political field taking place, and a cleansing of our processes
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of representation instituted, as well as a more exacting accounting required from
the people of those whom they have chosen to put in authority. There must
eventually be a closer tie-up between the educational system, the legal system
and the government, but it will all be directed to an effort to work out the best
ideals of the thinkers of the day in Anarchism. This period does not lie so far
ahead as you might imagine, particularly if the first move in this direction is
made by Anarchism.
The basic principles of anarchism are: The negation of authority and all of its
power, hierarchies and juridical laws. Freedom, equality, solidarity, social
justice, free contract, free initiative, atheism, antimilitarism, internationalism,
decentralism, autonomy and federalism, self management and libertarian
communalism - from each according to ability - to each according to needs. The
aim is more anarchist systems, i.e. a movement towards more human rights and
the best of the ideals of the French revolution, fairness and efficiency, less rank
and income differences. These concepts and principles should be considered all
in all, not partially, and reflect anarchist constitution.
Government by dictatorship. This type of government divides itself into three
parts:
a. Rule by a monarchy, limited usually today by the will of the people, or
rather by the politicians of the period, but symbolic of the ultimate rule of
the Hierarchy under the Kingship.
b. Rule by the leader of some democratic country, who is usually called a
president, or by some statesman (no matter by what name he may choose
to be called) who is frequently an idealist, though limited by his faulty
human nature, by the period in which he lives, by his advisors, and by the
widespread corruption and selfishness. A study of such men who have
held office in this capacity, made by a fair-minded neutral, will usually
demonstrate the fact that they held office under the influence of some
idea, which was in itself intrinsically right (no matter how applied), which
was forward-moving in its concept, and belonged to the then new age.
This relates them to the second ray.
c. Rule by dictators, who’s animating principle is not one of the new age
ideals, emerging in their particular time, but an idealism of a more
material kind—a generally recognised present idealism. They are not
usually reactionary nor are they found among the intuitive workers of
their age, but they take what is grounded, settled and easily available—
made so by the thinkers of their time—and then give it a material,
national and selfish twist and objective, and so force it on the masses by
fear, warlike means and material promises. True idealism, involving as it
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must in this new age patterns, and philosophical incentives are lacking in
their techniques. Nevertheless, they do lead the race on another step, for
they have a mass effect in evoking thought, and sometimes eventual
resistance, as the result of that thought.
The immediate aim of Anarchism is deeply concerned over world events. I am
asked to request you to continue with the Anarchy goodwill work at all costs and
in the face of all obstacles. The nucleus already formed must be preserved. The
Anarchic comrades must preserve its integrity and work undismayed. All is
certainly not yet lost. The steadiness of those who know Anarchism will help
humanity and aid the efforts of the Elder Anarchist Brothers, the Pioneers of the
past and the present. They are those who love and do not hate and who work for
unity.
“Anarchy” does not mean “without coordination, management , administration ,
etc.". Anarchy is management, coordination and administration etc. without
ruling and thus without rulers. Anarchy and anarchism also of course have and
use regulations and regulatory means when necessary and optimal, i.e.
significant self-regulation. That anarchy, means an-arch-y, i.e. management and
coordination without ruler(s), not just "without rule", a vague term that
superficially may be interpreted and manipulated in a lot of inconsistent ways,
i.e. non-authoritarian as well as authoritarian, must never be forgotten. "An"
means "without" as in an-aerobe, etc, "arch" means "ruler(s)" broadly defined,
and "y" in this connection stands for system, management, coordination, as in
monarch-y, oligarch-y, etc. The "an" is connected to "arch", not "y". Thus (an-
arch)-y means without arch, but not without system, management, coordination,
it means (an-arch)-system, management, coordination. In short an-arch-y = (an =
without arch = ruler(s)) y = management.
In the book "Modern Science and Anarchism" (1903-13), Peter Kropotkin
declares - and gives the reason why - anarchism is a sociological science broadly
defined, including political economy, etc., and is defined as an updated research
front of libertarian social scientific research, using the methods of modern
natural sciences, i.e. mathematical relations, statistics etc. Anarchism: "Its
method of investigation is that of the exact natural sciences, by which every
scientific conclusion must be verified... (using) ... the concrete language of
natural sciences, -- so we proceed in dealing with the facts of social life... not by
the dialectic method, but by the natural-scientific method, the method of
induction and deduction... No struggle can be successful if it is an unconscious
one, and if it does not render itself a clear and concise account of its aim...
Perhaps we are wrong and they are right. But in order to ascertain who is right, it
will not do either to quote this and that authority, to refer to Hegel's trilogy, or to
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argue by the "dialectic method." This question can be settled only by taking up
the study of economic relations as facts of natural science. Without entering into
further discussion of the principles of Anarchism and the Anarchist programme
of action, enough has been said, I think, to show the place of Anarchism among
the modern sociological sciences. Anarchism is an attempt to apply to the study
of the human institutions the generalizations gained by means of the natural-
scientific inductive method; and an attempt to foresee the future steps of
mankind on the road to liberty, equality, and fraternity, with a view to realizing
the greatest sum of happiness for every unit of human society. In Anarchism
there is no room for those pseudo-scientific laws with which the German
metaphysicians of the twenties and thirties had to consent themselves.
Anarchism does not recognize any method other than the natural-scientific.
This method it applies to all the so-called humanitarian sciences, and, availing
itself of this method as well as of all researches which have recently been called
forth by it, Anarchism endeavours to reconstruct all the sciences dealing with
man, and to revise every current idea of right, justice, etc., on the bases which
have served for the revision of all natural sciences. Whether or not Anarchism is
right in its conclusions will be shown by a scientific criticism of its bases and by
the practical life of the future. But in one thing it is absolutely right: in that it has
included the study of social institutions in the sphere of natural-scientific
investigations; has forever parted company with metaphysics; and makes use of
the method by which modern natural science .... were developed. Owing to this,
the very mistakes which Anarchism may have made in its researches can be
detected the more readily. But its conclusions can be verified only by the same
natural-scientific, inductive-deductive method by which every science and every
scientific concept of the universe is created."
The responsibility of Anarchic thought is little grasped as yet by those who are
numbered among the world institutions; yet their thought-making activity is now
either definitely constructive or potentially destructive. I hesitate to enlarge upon
this theme, owing to the probable personality reactions which those who read
these words may generate. I am, therefore, speaking here of Anarchism and the
world in general and not so specifically of the pledged workers.
Much will depend upon what you and I, comrades of goodwill think and what
we do. I would like to remind you of another most encouraging thing, and that is
that the power wielded by those who are seeking to live as Anarchists and their
liberating philosophy is out of all proportion to their registered sense of power
and usefulness. You are, as you endeavour to wield goodwill forces
constructively and selflessly, far more potent than you realise. If you add to this
realisation the recognition that you are not alone in this, but that people with a
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vision similar to yours and with the same ideals and aspiration are to be found in
every country without exception of any kind, in every philosophy, group and
organisation, then indeed you can go forward with courage and with hopeful
faith in the future. If this is a statement of fact (and I believe it to be so) then let
us go forward in unison with our comrades everywhere, conscious of
opportunity, of strength, of responsibility and of the joy of service.
© Philippe L. De Coster, B.Th., D.D., Ghent, Belgium.





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DEAR COMRADES AND FRIENDS:
First of all, let me express to you my warmest, heartiest thanks for all the kind
words and thoughts you have addressed to me, and then to express through your
pages the same heartiest thanks to all the comrades and friends who have sent
me such warm and friendly letters and telegrams on the occasion of my
seventieth birthday.
I need not tell you, nor could I word it on paper, how deeply I was touched by
all these expressions of sympathy, and how I felt that "something brotherly"
which keeps us, Anarchists, united by a feeling far deeper than the mere sense of
solidarity in a party; and I am sure that that feeling of brotherhood will have
some day its effect, when history will call upon us to show what we are worth,
and how far we can act in harmony for the reconstruction of Society upon a new
basis of equality and freedom.
And then let me add that if all of us have contributed to some extent to the work
of liberation of exploited mankind, it is because our ideas have been more or
less the expression of the ideas that are germinating in the very depths of the
masses of the people. The more I live, the more am I convinced that no truthful
and useful social science, and no useful and truthful social action is possible, but
the science which bases its conclusions, and the action which bases its acts,
upon the thoughts and the aspirations of the masses. All sociological science and
all social action which would not do that would remain sterile.
With full heart with you,
PETER KROPOTKIN.
OBSERVATIONS AND COMMENTS
THE aftermath of the McNamara tragedy—the trial of the forty Labour leaders,
most of them members of the Bridge and Iron Workers' Union—closed its first
act at Indianapolis. The defendants were charged by the Federal government
with conspiracy to transport explosives from State to State, and thirty-three men
were convicted and sentenced to terms ranging from one to seven years'
imprisonment.
The second act is to follow. Meanwhile the cases have been appealed to the
Supreme Court, and bail has been granted.
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This is the juridical state of affairs. Much more important, however, than the
legal farce is the social significance of the situation and the attitude of the
workers and their organizations toward it.
There is no doubt that the masters, the Steel Trust and its branches of the
Erectors and Manufacturers' Association, left no stone unturned to send the
indicted labour leaders to prison. The accusations against them and the trial were
designed to impress the workers with their servitude and to teach them
subjection and humility on the pain of persecution and punishment. Plutocracy,
manipulating the wires behind the throne of justice, pretended to be morally
shocked at the terrible dynamite practices. But the real purpose of the trial was
to give organized labour a knockout blow, to weaken and destroy the militant
spirit of the toilers, by all the forces at the command of the masters.
On their part, the workers seem yet sadly lacking in conscious solidaric purpose.
The men on trial in Indianapolis seemed to be isolated, to stand alone. It is true,
the last convention of the A. F. L. passed a half-hearted resolution to the effect
that the local bodies should give their support to the Indianapolis defendants.
But in his yearly report Gompers declared that. the McNamaras were "either
criminally insane or insanely criminal— either condition due to imperfect
education, incomplete education, or defective mentality."
It may be that Gompers and his co-bureaucrats are much better educated: in their
intercourse with the politicians of the Civic Federation they have been well
trained—so well that they believe to have done their duty to Labour by hiding
behind respectability and masking themselves with legal virtue.
A great opportunity was lost to labour in the McNamara trial. A far greater one
still at Indianapolis. If we had a mature Labour movement in this country and
strong characters within it—men with enthusiasm to stand up for their
convictions, the trial at Indianapolis would have served to tear the mask off our
rotten plutocratic society. Then the accused would have become the accusers.
No matter whether guilty or innocent, in the legal sense: had the Labour leaders
grasped the opportunity to throw their thundering j'accuse in the face of the
exploiters, they would have consciously made history and impressed their
footsteps upon social progress, to the inspiration of the multitudes of oppressed.
Had the men in Indianapolis dared defy the dragnet of capital, dared assert their
manhood, they would have done a really great service to the cause of Labour.
Unfortunately, when that cause is left to the mercy of "legal talent" and legal
trickery, its fate is pitiful.
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However, our whole sympathy is with the convicted men, who are but the
victims of our social rottenness and their own resultant lack of social
consciousness. But we hope that the lesson of Indianapolis will not be lost. The
struggle of Labour against capital is daily assuming the scope of a larger
consciousness and determined purpose. Capital, intrenched behind respectability
and legality, is constantly forcing the workers into more open warfare. The
masses are beginning to realize that in this war every weapon is justified that
will prove effective in improving the miserable condition of the disinherited and
ultimately emancipate the wage slave. Every strike is an incident in this warfare,
involving violence. Labour is forced to protect its interests by fighting the
masters with Labour's strongest weapons.
In this spirit the trial at Indianapolis should have been conducted—a defy of the
slave to his oppressor. And this spirit will gradually manifest itself in the daily
more intensive struggle of Labour, in the growing social consciousness of the
wage slave determined to break his chains.
SINCE the Tsar issued, some years ago, his boastful peace-manifesto—to the
great joy of superficial and noisy philanthropists—we have had almost continual
war. This Christmas and the New Year found the various governments of
Europe in such a murderous attitude, that a carnage of international proportions,
carried on with the most modern machinery of wholesale bloodshed, seems to be
imminent. Such a general war would involve from 12 to 15 millions of trained
murderers in a great slaughter, compared with which the atrocities and
bloodshed of the Balkan war would appear the merest child play.
So far general hostilities have been avoided. The experts and technicians of the
great powers are absorbed in "studying" the effect of modern weapons in the war
against Turkey, Especial interest is manifested in the airships from which good
Christians are speeding explosives upon the heathen Turks, and when this
method of destroying whole armies will prove successful, what a great step
forward will have been taken along the road of truly Christian civilization!
However, we need not despair of the ultimate triumph of humanity. The anti-
militant spirit is growing throughout the civilized world, and the governments
everywhere are forced to take it into account. The great generals and diplomats
do not feel quite safe in their calculations; they are beginning to doubt the
efficacy of their orders: some soldiers might happen to turn their guns the wrong
way. Anti-militarist demonstrations are taking place in various countries. In
France, for instance, the government has grown so fearful of this propaganda
that it has resolved to suppress the organization of the public school teachers,
because the latter are permeated with the anti-militarist spirit. The French
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Parliament stands aghast at the statistics showing that during the year i911
80,000 young men evaded military service, through desertion and other means.
In many regiments there have been discovered anti-military conspiracies, and
the Confédération Générale du Travail is preparing to declare a General Strike
in case of war, which shall especially involve the industries most vital for the
transportation and provisioning of troops.
It is quite safe to say that if a general European war is averted, it will not be due
to the peace fakirs a la Carnegie, who deal in canon and armor plate, but to a
great extent to the determined anti-military attitude of the international
proletariat.
* * *
WITH considerable satisfaction the press reported recently that Judge Goff, of
New York, broke all previous records by sentencing four men, at the same time,
to die in the electric chair.
The murderers are done with; but murder remains: for murder is as closely
interwoven with our social conditions as prostitution is with the morality of
"high society," or as the innumerable fatal accidents on our railroads are
connected with the greed for big profits.
* * *
AN army of 100,000 garment workers has risen in rebellion against starvation
wages, Triangle fire traps, and limitless exploitation.
Such a strike, fought energetically and determinedly, without weak compromise
or petitioning, can accomplish more within a few weeks than a generation of
political juggling with alleged Labour-protection laws.
* * *
IF our Comrade Peter Kropotkin ever doubted the value of his revolutionary
activities, the wonderful spirit manifested at the various celebrations of his
seventieth birthday would serve completely to dispel that doubt.
All over Europe and America the thoughtful workers, whether Anarchists or
Socialists, gathered en masse to express their love and devotion to the man who,
among all revolutionists, stands out as the most firm and uncompromising
figure—Peter Kropotkin.
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The most inspiring event was the meeting in New York, at Carnegie Hall, but
there were numerous others, in Chicago, Boston, Brownsville, Toronto, London,
Brussels, Paris, and other cities, all over the world. Everywhere the same
enthusiasm, the same spontaneous outburst of love and appreciation for our
Comrade. And that not only because Peter Kropotkin ranks high as a scientist,
historian and man of letters, but because, above and beyond all that, Kropotkin
is an Anarchist, a revolutionist. As such he will live in the minds and hearts of
his comrades always.
A GROUP of young Jewish Anarchists, known as the Kropotkin Jubilee
Committee, is fittingly commemorating the 70th birthday of Comrade Peter
Kropotkin by the publication of a new edition of his complete works in the
Jewish language. The first volume, "The Memoirs of a Revolutionist," has now
appeared. The translation is very carefully done, and is faithful to the original.
The price of the volume is 75c.
The Committee will also issue in the near future a de luxe edition of the same
work, in 2 volumes, at $1.00. The profits will be used to publish the other works
of Peter Kropotkin.
* * *
AMONG the speakers who addressed the Kropotkin celebration in London—in
honor of our Comrade's 70th birthday—was also George Bernard Shaw. He was
"beginning to wonder," he said, "whether Kropotkin had not been right all these
years," and he and his friends all wrong.
Better late than never, George. Even a Fabian Socialist may be saved from the
confusion of hopeless experimental politics and become a true revolutionist,
provided he is sincere in his self-criticism. He need but make a bold attempt.
* * *
A CORRESPONDENT of the Social Democratic publications in America
relates an interview with August Bebel, in which the latter expressed himself to
the effect that the German workingmen are not ripe for a social change along
Socialist lines.
Bebel was much more hopeful when his party did not yet count 4 million votes
and when the Socialists in Germany had less than two dozen representatives in
the Reichstag, instead of the 40 they have now. At that time he prophesied that
the social revolution would take place in the year 1898.
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Great success at the ballot box has evidently proved very disheartening. Bebel is
now the leader of the strongest party in the Reichstag, and if he now declares
that notwithstanding the four million Socialist votes the German workers are not
ready for Socialism, such a statement is tantamount to a declaration of
bankruptcy on the part of political Socialism.
This bankruptcy was inevitable. If for generations the workers are taught to
believe that their emancipation can be brought about in Parliaments by casting a
bit of paper on Election Day, by compromises and legislation, the result can be
but one: the masses become more and more passive, lose initiative and the
power of independent action, and are soon totally paralyzed.
* * *
WITH a single master stroke "Comrade" Spargo annihilated sabotage. Sabotage
must be severely repudiated-—said he—because it is an enemy to morality.
A profound thought! A little more serious investigation will yet enable Spargo to
prove that sabotage is opposed to the commandments of Moses, handed to him
directly by Jehovah, and that it is further also not in keeping with the dogmas of
the only true apostolic Church, or of the Koran. Indeed, sabotage can not be
even harmonized with the pious Sunday-school advice of young Rockefeller to
the open-mouthed youngsters of the Y. M. C. A.
* * *
THE Suffragettes of England continue to practice direct action and sabotage.
They are not to be so easily cajoled as our own Suffragists whose "radicalism"
finds complete expression in five o'clock teas, banquets, and meaningless
parades.
Of course, there is no lack of moral indignation over the methods of the militant
suffragettes. The editors of "respectable" journalism literally froth at their
bovine mouths. Nevertheless it is a fact that the British direct actionists have
filled the government with wholesome respect, so that it does not dare to keep
them long in prison. The governmental machinery of organized violence works
nice and smooth only so long as the people remain patient in their subjection;
but the moment they awaken to the realization of their own will and energy, the
machinery goes wrong and begins to break down.
* * *
17

OUR request for gifts for the Mother Earth Bazaar met with a most generous
response.
Friends from every part of the country made contributions and thereby proved
that whatever our magazine may lack in numbers, it makes up for in the quality
of its friends. With such splendid incentive Mother Earth will continue the
struggle against all odds.


THE CASE OF EDWARD F. MYLIUS
THE United States began by declaring high treason against the King of England
to be a patriotic virtue. His Majesty was voted a dangerous nuisance, and it often
happened that loyalists who dared to hurrah for the King were beaten, tarred and
feathered.
The young Republic, christened in the blood of the revolution, proclaimed to the
whole world that it welcomed the persecuted, and that in America was "planted
the banner of universal tolerance and justice. A fairy tale, indeed beautiful.
But entrance into this fairy land is now barred by iron gates and inquisitions;
nay, more; hundreds of officials nose about to determine the size of the
immigrant's pocketbook and to weigh his opinions and morality in the scale of
bureaucracy.
Into the hands of this inquisition has now fallen the Englishman, Edward F.
Mylius. He is imprisoned at Ellis Island, and the immigration authorities have
already twice decided to deport him. A protest against this idiotic decision has
been forwarded to Washington.
The immigration authorities charge Mylius with being a common criminal, he
having been punished in England by a year's imprisonment for an article he had
supposedly written in the Liberator—the sheet published in Paris by the
American, Edward Holden James, advocating an universal republic. The article
in question described the present hen-pecked occupant of the British throne as a
bigamist who had married a Miss Culme-Seymour in the Island of Malta, in
1890, afterwards deserting his legal wife in order to attach himself in wedlock to
a woman contaminated with royal blood—the present Queen.
18

Our immigration authorities contend that a man who had so boldly cast aside
respect for his" Majesty could find no asylum in the country that began its career
by wiping monarchy off its map.
His Majesty and his government will be much moved to know that the United
States government so willingly and ardently plays the role of bouncer for Great
Britain, refusing to recognize a criticism of the King as a political offence and
considering such acts crimes involving "moral turpitude."
Even the British court, before which Mylius was tried, did not prove such a
monarchical lickspittle as our American immigration authorities. Meanwhile,
however, the publisher of the Liberator has issued a statement to the effect that
Mylius was not the author of the article in question, but that he was merely the
English representative of the publication. Whence it follows, of course, that the
charges of the American government against Mylius fall flat even if considered
in a merely technical light.
The freedom of press in England, as in America, is evidently a very doubtful
matter. In both countries it is quickly punctured, as soon as it is put to the test.
However, the story of the King's bigamy would not have had such evil
consequences for Mylius and would have probably never become known at Ellis
Island, had not a skunk from Scotland Yard rushed in to take a hand in the
council of the nations. That worthy, whose odiferous name we are about to
reveal, sent the following cable to the New York Police Department:
20 Aberdeen Place, Molde Wall, London.
December 9th, 1912.
There is a notorious Anarchist named E. F. Mylius coming over to the United
States. He was formerly a Republican, and was sentenced for libelling His
Majesty the King of England. Lately he is becoming an Anarchist, and I am
especially engaged in watching his movements. He is always in company of the
direct-actionists. One of his friends tells me he is going over to consult Emma
Goldman. Probably he will sail from Havre on a French boat, and am assured
before Christmas. I send you this warning at once, in order to prevent his
landing. He always carries a loaded revolver, so I am told. I am sending this at
once. When he is rejected a small remuneration will oblige.
Yours truly,
A. E. EMMANUEL, Secret Police Agent.
19

This Judas letter is on file at the immigration offices of Ellis Island. No doubt, it
is considered one of the valuable documents on the strength of which Mylius has
been refused admission to the shores of this free country. For Mylius is indeed a
man of evil intentions. Does not the detective himself say that a "friend" told
him that he believed that Mylius might visit Emma Goldman? This is enough to
prove what a dangerous man Mylius is to this in-money-we-trust government.
But seriously, it indicates nameless stupidity and degradation of the lowest form
that such a "document" should at all be considered by the government; that it
should even cause the detention and possible deportation of a man who comes to
our shores in the hope of earn-ing a modest living. No government could stoop
lower than to permit such a denunciatory letter to influence -- perhaps even to
determine -- its actions and policy. The reference, at the close of the letter, to the
"small remuneration that will oblige" the Scotland Yard man, gives rise to the
justified suspicion that the United States encourages and even rewards such dirty
work. It would be highly interesting to learn more details of this side of the
immigration situation; it might throw some light on the terrible misery of our
immigrants.
Familiar with the character of government, we are not very much surprised at
any atrocity it might commit. But the case of Edward Mylius typifies to
systematic suppression of free speech and free press, and the tyrannical
persecution of all radical thought, and we are therefore determined to exert
every possible effort to fight the deportation of Edward F. Mylius
* * *
Upon learning of the detention of Mylius, the comrades of the Mother Earth
group immediately took steps to call the case to the attention of the public, with
a view of defeating the express purpose of the immigration authorities to deport
Mylius. The matter involves considerable expense, and we urge every radical
and liberty-loving man to contribute toward making our fight a suc-cess. Send
contributions care of MOTHER EARTH.
To begin the eight year of our magazine, we must in-crease our subscription by
at least fie hundred. To make this possible, we have decided to offer a premium
with every new subscription or renewal. My book, "Anarchism and Other
Essays, " which, as you know, sells at <&#36>1.00, cloth, hs been gotten out
now in paper cover, and will be given as a premium with a year's subscription
for the magazine.
E.G.
20

SYNDICALISM: ITS THEORY AND PRACTICE
By Emma Goldman
IN view of the fact that the ideas embodied in Syndicalism have been practised
by the workers for the last half century, even if without the background of social
consciousness; that in this country five men had to pay with their lives because
they advocated Syndicalist methods as the most effective in the struggle of
Labour against capital; and that, furthermore, Syndicalism has been consciously
practised by the workers of France, Italy and Spain since 1895, it is rather
amusing to witness some people in America and England now swooping down
upon Syndicalism as a perfectly new and never before heard-of proposition.
It is astonishing how very naïve Americans are, how crude and immature in
matters of international importance. For all his boasted practical aptitude, the
average American is the very last to learn of the modern means and tactics
employed in the great struggles of his day. Always he lags behind in ideas and
methods that the European workers have for years past been applying with great
success.
It may be contended, of course, that this is merely a sign of youth on the part of
the American. And it is indeed beautiful to possess a young mind, fresh to
receive and perceive. But unfortunately the American mind seems never to
grow, to mature and crystallize its views.
Perhaps that is why an American revolutionist can at the same time be a
politician. That is also the reason why leaders of the Industrial Workers of the
World continue in the Socialist party, which is antagonistic to the principles as
well as to the activities of the I. W. W. Also why a rigid Marxian may propose
that the Anarchists work together with the faction that began its career by a most
bitter and malicious persecution of one of the pioneers of Anarchism, Michael
Bakunin. In short, to the indefinite, uncertain mind of the American radical the
most contradictory ideas and methods are possible. The result is a sad chaos in
the radical movement, a sort of intellectual hash, which has neither taste nor
character.
Just at present Syndicalism is the pastime of a great many Americans, so-called
intellectuals. Not that they know anything about it, except that some great
authorities — Sorel, Bergson and others — stand for it: because the American
needs the seal of authority, or he would not accept an idea, no matter how true
and valuable it might be.
21

Our bourgeois magazines are full of dissertations on Syndicalism. One of our
most conservative colleges has even gone to the extent of publishing a work of
one of its students on the subject, which has the approval of a professor. And all
this, not because Syndicalism is a force and is being successfully practised by
the workers of Europe, but because — as I said before — it has official
authoritative sanction.
As if Syndicalism had been discovered by the philosophy of Bergson or the
theoretic discourses of Sorel and Berth, and had not existed and lived among the
workers long before these men wrote about it. The feature which distinguishes
Syndicalism from most philosophies is that it represents the revolutionary
philosophy of Labour conceived and born in the actual struggle and experience
of the workers themselves — not in universities, colleges, libraries, or in the
brain of some scientists. The revolutionary philosophy of Labour, that is the true
and vital meaning of Syndicalism.
Already as far back as 1848 a large section of the workers realized the utter
futility of political activity as a means of helping them in their economic
struggle. At that time already the demand went forth for direct economic
measures, as against the useless waste of energy along political lines. This was
the case not only in France, but even prior to that in England, where Robert
Owen, the true revolutionary Socialist, propagated similar ideas.
After years of agitation and experiment the idea was incorporated by the first
convention of the Internationale in 1867, in the resolution that the economic
emancipation of the workers must be the principal aim of all revolutionists, to
which everything else is to be subordinated.
In fact, it was this determined radical stand which eventually brought about the
split in the revolutionary movement'of that day, and its division into two
factions: the one, under Marx and Engels, aiming at political conquest; the other,
under Bakunin and the Latin workers, forging ahead along industrial and
Syndicalist lines. The further development of those two wings is familiar to
every thinking man and woman: the one has gradually centralized into a huge
machine, with the sole purpose of conquering political power within the existing
capitalist State; the other is becoming an ever more vital revolutionary factor,
dreaded by the enemy as the greatest menace to its rule.
It was in the year i900, while a delegate to the Anarchist Congress in Paris, that I
first came in contact with Syndicalism in operation. The Anarchist press had
been discussing the subject for years prior to that; therefore we Anarchists knew
22

something about Syndicalism. But those of us who lived in America had to
content themselves with the theoretic side of it.
In 1900, however, I saw its effect upon Labour in France: the strength, the
enthusiasm and hope with which Syndicalism inspired the workers. It was also
my good fortune to learn of the man who more than anyone else had directed
Syndicalism into definite working channels, Fernand Pelloutier. Unfortunately, I
could not meet this remarkable young man, as he was at that time already very
ill with cancer. But wherever I went, with whomever I spoke, the love and
devotion for Pelloutier was wonderful, all agreeing that it was he who had
gathered the discontented forces in the French Labour movement and imbued
them with new life and a new purpose, that of Syndicalism.
On my return to America I immediately hegan to propagate Syndicalist ideas,
especially Direct Action and the General Strike. But it was like talking to the
Rocky Mountains — no understanding, even among the more radical elements,
and complete indifference in Labour ranks.
In 1907 I went as a delegate to the Anarchist Congress at Amsterdam and, while
in Paris, met the most active Syndicalists in the Confédération Générate du
Travail: Pouget, Delesalle, Monate, and many others. More than that, I had the
opportunity to see Syndicalism in daily operation, in its most constructive and
inspiring forms.
I allude to this, to indicate that my knowledge of Syndicalism does not come
from Sorel, Bergson or Berth, but from actual contact with and observation of
the tremendous work carried on by the workers of Paris within the ranks of the
Confédération. It would require a volume to explain in detail what Syndicalism
is doing for the French workers. In the American press you read only of its
resistive methods, of strikes and sabotage, of the conflicts of Labour with
capital. These are no doubt very important matters, and yet the chief value of
Syndicalism lies much deeper. It lies in the constructive and educational effect
upon the life and thought of the masses.
The fundamental difference between Syndicalism and the old trade union
methods is this: while the old trade unions, without exception, move within the
wage system and capitalism, recognizing the latter as inevitable, Syndicalism
repudiates and condemns present industrial arrangements as unjust and criminal,
and holds out no hope to the worker for lasting results from this system.
Of course Syndicalism, like the old trade unions, fights for immediate gains, but
it is not stupid enough to pretend that Labour can expect humane conditions
23

from inhuman economic arrangements in society. Thus it merely wrests from the
enemy what it can force him to yield; on the whole, however, Syndicalism aims
at, and concentrates its energies upon, the complete overthrow of the wage
system. Indeed, Syndicalism goes further: it aims to liberate Labour from every
institution that has not for its object the free development of production for the
benefit of all humanity. In short, the ultimate purpose of Syndicalism is to
reconstruct society from its present centralized, authoritative and brutal state to
one based upon the free, federated grouping of the workers along lines of
economic and social liberty.
With this object in view, Syndicalism works in two directions: first, by
undermining the existing institutions; secondly, by developing and educating the
workers and cultivating their spirit of solidarity, to prepare them for a full, free
life, when capitalism shall have been abolished.
Syndicalism is, in essence, the economic expression of Anarchism. That
circumstance accounts for the presence of so many Anarchists in the Syndicalist
movement. Like Anarchism, Syndicalism prepares the workers along direct
economic lines, as conscious factors in the great struggles of to-day, as well as
conscious factors in the task of reconstructing society along autonomous
industrial lines, as against the paralyzing spirit of centralization with its
bureaucratic machinery of corruption, inherent in all political parties.
Realizing that the diametrically opposed interests of capital and Labour can
never be reconciled, Syndicalism must needs repudiate the old rusticated, worn-
out methods of trade unionism, and declare for an open war against the capitalist
regime, as well as against every institution which to-day supports and protects
capitalism,
As a logical sequence Syndicalism, in its daily warfare against capitalism,
rejects the contract system, because it does not consider Labour and capital
equals, hence cannot consent to an agreement which the one has the power to
break, while the other must submit to without redress.
For similar reasons Syndicalism rejects negotiations in Labour disputes, because
such a procedure serves only to give the enemy time to prepare his end of the
fight, thus defeating the very object the workers set out to accomplish. Also,
Syndicalism stands for spontaneity, both as a preserver of the fighting strength
of Labour and also because it takes the enemy unawares, hence compels him to
a speedy settlement or causes him great loss.
24

Syndicalism objects to a large union treasury, because money is as corrupting an
element in the ranks of Labour as it is in those of capitalism. We in America
know this to be only too true. If the Labour movement in this country were not
backed by such large funds, it would not be as conservative as it is, nor would
the leaders be so readily corrupted. However, the main reason for the opposition
of Syndicalism to large treasuries consists in the fact that they create class
distinctions and jealousies within the ranks of Labour, so detrimental to the
spirit of solidarity. The worker whose organization has a large purse considers
himself superior to his poorer brother, just as he regards himself better than the
man who earns fifty cents less per day.
The chief ethical value of Syndicalism consists in the stress it lays upon the
necessity of Labour getting rid of the element of dissension, parasitism and
corruption in its ranks, It seeks to cultivate devotion, solidarity and enthusiasm,
which are far more essential and vital in the economic struggle than money.
As I have already stated, Syndicalism has grown out of the disappointment of
the workers with politics and parliamentary methods. In the course of its
development Syndicalism has learned to see in the State — with its mouthpiece,
the representative system — one of the strongest supports of capitalism; just as
it has learned that the army and the church are the chief pillars of the State. It is
therefore that Syndicalism has turned its back upon parliamentarism and
political machines, and has set its face toward the economic arena wherein alone
gladiator Labour can meet his foe successfully. ,
Historic experience sustains the Syndicalists in their uncompromising opposition
to parliamentarism. Many had entered political life and, unwilling to be
corrupted by the atmosphere, withdrew from office, to devote themselves to the
economic struggle — Proudhon, the Dutch revolutionist Nieuwenhuis, John
Most and numerous others. While those who remained in the parliamentary
quagmire ended by betraying their trust, without having gained anything for
Labour. But it is unnecessary to discuss here political history. Suffice to say that
Syndicalists are anti-parliamentarians as a result of bitter experience.
Equally so has experience determined their anti-military attitude. Time and
again has the army been used to shoot down strikers and to inculcate the
sickening idea of patriotism, for the purpose of dividing the workers against
themselves and helping the masters to the spoils. The inroads that Syndicalist
agitation has made into the superstition of patriotism are evident from the dread
of the ruling class for the loyalty of the army, and the rigid persecution of the
anti-militarists. Naturally, for the ruling class realizes much better than the
25

workers that when the soldiers will refuse to obey their superiors, the whole
system of capitalism will be doomed.
Indeed, why should the workers sacrifice their children that the latter may be
used to shoot their own parents? Therefore Syndicalism is not merely logical in
its anti-military agitation; it is most practical and farreaching, inasmuch as it
robs the enemy of his strongest weapon against Labour.
(To be continued in the next issue.)
MANUEL PARDINAS
By Pedro Esteve.
HE died without being able to explain the motives that induced him to suppress
Canalejas. Those of us who have known him can, nevertheless, understand
them.
Pardinas was an intelligent workingman, industrious, simple and kind. His life
was full of suffering. He left his native town to seek mental expansion and
comfort for the body, and wherever he went he found misery, ignorance and
persecution. He was in Catalonia, in France, in Cuba, in North America, and,
notwithstanding the fact that he was an expert painter and decorator, sober in the
extreme — he drank absolutely no liquor and nourished himself solely with
fruits and vegetables in small quantities — he was out of work for long periods
and, consequently, suffered much hardship.
"Why live," he said to me one day, "if life is to be one long-continued
suffering?" To toil and eat (when you are able), sleep restlessly, always thinking
of the morrow and having to contemplate innumerable injustices without being
able to prevent or remedy them. No pleasures, not even that of finding among
your comrades in distress collaborators in the work of redemption!
"Life is attractive even when you suffer, knowing that your own Labour will
benefit our fellow creatures," I replied.
"Sacrifice yourself for others! It isn't even an emulation, not even a consolation.
Death is our only consolation."
And notwithstanding, he dreamed only of finding work, in order to save
sufficiently to go to fight in Mexico, and, while waiting for this anxiously
desired moment to arrive, wherever there was a comrade, or a child of a
26

comrade, sick, there he went to assist, to apply the curative methods called
natural, and of which he was a fervent advocate.
Even now it seems to me I can see him giving baths to my children and
constructing a sun parlour in the yard of the house in which he lived, in order to
give them a sun-bath!
Pie discussed, reasoned, and above all, he had feeling.
I never saw him in a provocative mood, or loquacious, nor brutal. In preference
to disputing, he preferred being silent. He was very studious. He spoke French,
studied English, and read with fondness every book or periodical which fell into
his hands and which he knew could illuminate him. He had a great predilection
for astronomy.
He looked for the desired consolation in spiritualism, and- served as medium in
spiritualistic séances; but the illusion could not satisfy him and he returned to
ask of science that which science could not give him, because a few privileged
ones had usurped the means of obtaining it: the full unfolding of his being.
Study made him more wretched, because it made him glimpse a world of
beauty, — which he knew was not within his reach ever to enjoy.
There appeared before him one day one who could have given him
encouragement, who could have made life agreeable, even in the midst of great
sufferings — a woman who liked him, who loved him, who knew how to instill
in him an intense passion. But is was forbidden fruit, the enjoyment of which
would have caused suffering to another man and to innocent, tender creatures,
and, through fear of seeing these children suffer (he believed in the economic
ideas of Malthus), he fled from the amorous incarnation.
What should he do? Life in Tampa was to him loathsome. He had little work and
under very poor conditions. At last he obtained steady employment, and as he
spent almost nothing for food and clothes — he went so far as to buy second-
hand clothing in order not to reduce his modest stock-r-when he finished his job
he had a hundred dollars in his pocket and thought of returning to old Europe,
where, if the lack of necessities is felt the same as in America, or worse, there
are at least more intellectual joys. There there are people who propagate, who
agitate, who struggle for their redemption.
Perhaps he expected that by becoming absorbed in the whirlwind of life, he
would return to life.
27

But it seems that there he not only encountered the dreaded spectre of
unemployment, but also the persecution of the police, who would not let him
rest day or night: who denounced him as a dangerous Anarchist to anyone who
employed him and to the people with whom he resided, and followed him
constantly and — drove him to be, in truth, really dangerous.
He was by nature sensitive and they assuredly overexcited his sensitiveness.
They made life more loathsome to him, and death more desirable. Being in this
state or condition, the deceit practised by Canalejas upon the railway employees
may have created an intense impression upon him and he may have decided to
tiie killing, and he did kill and then he committed suicide. Perhaps it was the
only happy moment of his life! .
* * *
May these have been the motives that induced him to suppress Canalejas? He
did not say so. Probably no one will ever know them: but those among us who
have known him, who have been on intimate terms with him as a comrade, and
who know how he thought, knew his feelings and how he acted, can permit
themselves deductions of this nature.
Once again, he who would least have been suspected of a disposition to commit
such an act, was the one to realize it. Another repetition of the case of Caserio,
of Bresci, of nearly all the heroic paladins of the social vindication. His
acquaintances, his friends perhaps, have been those most surprised at his act.
Of what use are the special laws promulgated to prevent such acts, the
photographic galleries and the anthropometric departments? Of what use will it
be to arrest hundreds of men who neither knew him, nor have ever heard the
name of this destroyer of a tyrant previous to this attempt? At the utmost, to
over-excite some other sensitive person.
Accomplices, inducers! Yes, there is one, an accomplice and an inducer at the
same time, whom we want to decapitate — the present social régime.
A VOICE FROM SIBERIA
New York, Dec. 23rd, 1912.
Mother Earth, 55 West 28th Street, City.
Dear Comrades: — The following pathetic letter was received by the Relief
Society for the Political Exiles in Siberia, from an exile in Siberia whom they
28

have helped considerably. The letter speaks for itself, and if you find it
important, kindly print it in MOTHER EARTH.
"Tell Them. . . ."
Consumption is doing its work. The doctors assure me that I have only five or
six months more to live, and it is possible that with great care and under the best
conditions, I should survive a year, but it is ridiculous to speak of good
conditions here.
There is a good deal to say about the life of the exiles, but not knowing in whose
hands the letter may fall, I restrain from saying anything.
I do not know to what conclusions you have come, comrades, but I am a decided
Anarchist. This word, I know, calls out a good deal of contempt, hatred and fear.
I know it. But I do not intend to discuss this matter with you. I only ask you,
comrades, to tell those who have come to the same conclusions with me, that I
send them my greetings. Tell them. . . . Tell them that with the last piece of lung
that I will be compelled to eject with blood, the last words that I will utter will
be, "Ave Socialis Revolution, salutant te morituri! (Long live the social
revolution, on my way to meet death I salute you.)
Alexander Monsenko.
* * *
ANARCHISM — The philosophy of a new social order based
on liberty unrestricted by man-made law; the theory that all forms of
government rest on violence, and are therefore wrong and harmful,
as well as unnecessary.
DIRECT ACTION — Conscious individual or collective effort
to protest against, or remedy, social conditions through the systematic
assertion of the economic power of the workers.
FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE*
By B. M.
IT is quite impossible to write of Nietzsche in a way that the reader should at
once understand him and "place" him. Very little is to be gleaned from the
numerous volumes written about him. One must read him at first hand, get close
to him, in order to gain admission into his castle — the castle of a thousand
lights, with its noble domes and spires that rear their heads to the highest
29

mountain peaks. He belongs to the thinker poets who are clarified by divination
and intuition rather than by argumentation and explanation. His style is music;
in the highest degree he combines the artistic temperament with the scientific
spirit.
The systematic ones, the dry rationalists, consider him a wild-eyed philosopher
run amuck, satanically bent upon the destruction of all institutionalized
discipline and authority. He is the annihilator of all "accepted verities" and
traditions, especially to those who pride themselves on their respectability, piety,
and ripeness of years. Nor can the representatives of various isms "classify" him.
To label his philosophy materialistic or idealistic does not help to understand
Nietzsche. He had shot sharp arrows into, the camp of both the Socialists and the
Anarchists. The former, especially, he abominated, considering them, like
everything democratic, the last exponents of the Christian morality of charity
and pity — a morality he heartily despised as the source of all the pettiness,
cowardice and wretchedness of the man of today. In the last chapter of the
"Antichrist" (the XVI. volume of the complete edition) he sums up his judgment
of Christianity as follows:
With this I will now conclude and pronounce my judgment. I condemn
Christianity and confront it with the most terrible accusation that an accuser has
ever had in his mouth. To my mind it is the greatest of all conceivable
corruptions; it has had the will to the last imaginable corruption. The Christian
Church allowed nothing to escape from corruption; it converted every value into
its opposite, every truth into a lie, and every honest impulse into an ignominy of
soul. Let anyone dare speak to me of its humanitarian blessings! To abolish any
sort of distress was opposed to its profoundest interest; its very existence
depended on states of distress; it created states of distress in order to make itself,
immortal. The cancer germ of sin for instance! The Church was the first to
enrich mankind with this misery.
* The Macmillan Company, New York.
This eternal accusation against Christianity I would fain write on all walls — I
have letters with which I can make even the blind see — I call Christianity the
one great curse, the one enormous and innermost perversion, the one great
instinct of revenge for which no means are too venomous, too underhand, too
underground and too Petty. I call it the one immortal blemish of mankind.
The civilization of our day, permeated as it is by Christian morality, Nietzsche
considered an instrument for the subjection and taming of man. It suppresses his
nature-given instincts, and turns him — like the stable-life of domesticated
30

animals — into a weak, tame and humble creature that trembles before its own
shadow and is aghast at every boldness and adventure. Nietzsche wants man to
reach the courageous hour when he shall ask himself:
What good is my happiness! It is poverty and pollution and wretched self —
complacency. But my happiness should justify existence itself!
The hour when ye say: "What good is my reason! Doth it long for knowledge as
the lion for his food? It is poverty and pollution and wretched self-
complacency!"
The hour when ye say: "What good is my virtue! As yet it hath not made me
passionate. How weary I am of my good and my bad! It is all poverty and
pollution and wretched complacency!"
The hour when ye say: What good is my justice! I do not see that I am fervor
and fuel. The just however are fervour and fuel!"
The hour when ye say: "What good is my pity! Is not pity the cross on which he
is nailed who loveth man? But my pity is not a crucifixion."
It is not your sin — it is your self-satisfaction that crieth unto heaven; your very
sparingness in sin crieth unto heaven!
Where is the lightning to lick you with its tongue? Where is the frenzy with
which ye should be inoculated?
Even the highest in this tame civilization are yet low. "I serve, thou servest, we
serve," they say to each other, and over all rules the gold of the tradesman.
* * *
With pride Nietzsche called himself the "first Immoralist." But how beautifully
he speaks of chastity!
Would that ye were perfect — at least as animals! But to animals belongeth
innocence.
Do I counsel you to slay your instincts? I counsel you to innocence in your
instincts.
Do I counsel you to chastity? Chastity is a virtue with some, but with many
almost a vice.
31

And also this parable give I unto you: Not a few who incant to cast out their
devil, went thereby into the swine themselves.
To whom chastity is difficult, it is to be dissuaded: lest it become the road to hell
— to filth and lust of soul.
Verily, there are chaste ones from their very nature; they are gentler of heart,
and laugh better and oftener than you.
They laugh also at chastity and ask: "What is chastity?"
Is chastity not folly? But the folly came unto us, and' not we unto it.
We offered that guest harbour and heart: now it dwelleth with us — let it stay as
long as it will.
The relation of Christianity to erotic love Nietzsche appropriately characterized
in the following aphorism: "Christianity gave Eros poison to drink; certainly he
did not die of it, but degenerated to vice."
* * *
Nietzsche first attracted attention by his annihilating attack on David Strauss —
the author of the "Life of Jesus," the "Old and New Faith" — who was then
considered a great apostle of enlightment. Nietzsche singled out Strauss as the
typical representative of philistine culture, coining the characteristic term,
Bildungsphilister, — descriptive of the intellectual plebeians in the realm of
knowledge and taste, who are perfectly content in the sterile delusion that the
Truth has already been found and all that is necessary is to introduce it, properly
frocked and trained. This type of intellectual philistine Nietzsche confronts with
the unfettered intelligence, the unconventional, solitary thinker, who is not to be
met with on the beaten path, and who knows that the "great men" were always in
search of truth, but that it is not a thing to be captured and caged for all time.
Nietzsche's next Labours dealt with a criticism of the study of history. The latter,
he finds, is over-estimated. The present suffers from an over-consumption of
historic education; it is a sort of mental luxury, an intellectual patchwork of
variegated colors. It has blinded and stultified modern man, robbed him of
character and personality, and turned him into a mere onlooker, without the
power of initiative or strength — a sombre eunuch, a walking encyclopedia
ornamented with the gilt index of objectivity. Such a one is a concrete
abstraction, that boasts to understand everything, to consider everything
objectively, to know the cause and origin of all things. He can be roused neither
32

by hatred nor love, for is not everything as it is, because of Necessity? Indeed,
the boasted education and culture of our day is not a thing of life, not a matter of
real understanding: it merely treats of it. It can make philistines and scholars; but
it cannot produce men, individuals that themselves make history, that defy
history and so-called reality: men that care nought for "thus it is", but strive with
all the energy and strength of their will for "Thus it shall be".
At this period Arthur Schopenhauer and Richard Wagner are Nietzsche's
masters. In the art of Wagner he finds the elements of the culture of the future;
in the school of Schopenhauer men may mature to make that culture a reality.
With these two masters we can learn to be unzeitgemäss, rise beyond the
tendencies of our day, arm ourselves against our time. They possess the honesty
that does not blink in the face of considerations: they have boldly exposed their
breasts to the shafts of their time; they have gone into the wilderness and were
unafraid to be alone; they have saved themselves from becoming-moral and
intellectual, fossils, they refused to be molded into the form which the cultured
people of today consider the only proper one. And thus they have set an example
for the coming generations.
From Schopenhauer and Wagner Nietzsche draws a metaphysical philosophy
that found expression in "The Birth of Tragedy."
* * *
A second period begins. The faith in Wagner is dying: the hero of his youth is
looked upon with suspicion, as a Rattenfänger von Hameln, who with mystically
sensual melodies tries again to decoy men to the Golgotha of the bleeding
Saviour, to prostrate themselves with contrition. Nietzsche is filled with a great
disgust. He feels as if he had cast the enthusiasm of his youth into the mire; like
a man broken down with Severe illness he feels himself. But by degrees he
recovers his health and is rejuvenated. Like a care-free wanderer he wends his
way through all the regions of the mind, biding but a short while in any one
place. And when he again appears in public, it is with a new book that mirrors
his being from a new angle. He now speaks as one emerged from beneath a
heavy weight, one who has risen from the darkness and entered into the light.
"Human all too Human" is in point of style and contents the forerunner of
Zarathustra, the "Geneology of Morals," the philosophy of "Beyond Good and
Evil." He chooses the form of aphorism to express his bold thoughts, which now
proclaim war against the philosophic systems and especially against
metaphysics. All philosophic systems are fata morgana that mislead and dupe
man; but the worst deceiver is metaphysics: it falsifies the text of nature and
relegates the true meaning of life to the Hinterwelt — the world beyond.
33

This new Nietzsche is already the one that later speaks in Zarathustra:
I conjure you, my brethren, remain true to the earth, and believe not those who
speak unto you of superearthly hopes! Poisoners are they, whether they know it
or not.
Despisers of life are they themselves, decayed and poisoned, of whom the earth
is weary; so away with them!
Once blasphemy against God was the greatest blasphemy, but God died, and
therewith also those blasphemers. To blaspheme the earth is now the
dreadfullest sin; and to rate the heart of the unknowable higher than the meaning
of the earth.
To make peace between man and the earth, it is necessary to eradicate from the
world the "evil conscience." For at all times there have been many who lived in
evil without conscience, while many good men lack the feeling of a good
conscience. An evil conscience is like a dog biting into a stone — it is stupidity.
There is no radical difference between good and evil. Nature knows only
relative differences, and Kant who wanted to establish the good by means of the
categoric imperative, therefore became,' in philosophy, the great Chinaman of
Koenigsberg. In opposition to the dogmas of morality, philosophy, and religion
it must always be emphasized that everything is subject to question, and nothing
is finite. "A thousand paths are there which have never yet been trodden; a
thousand salubrities and hidden islands of life. Unexhausted and undiscovered is
still man and man's world."
How often we believe that we have firm hold of a truth, and yet hold words
merely! Beware of words, for every word is a prejudice.
Between "Human All Too Human" and "Thus spake Zarathustra" appeared "The
Dawn of Day'' and "Joyful Wisdom." The magic and beauty of early dew is in
these works, so rich in thought about moral prejudices. To read them is to
behold a man liberated from darkness, walking erect toward beautiful vistas of
light. The sunshine of joy envelops him and glows serenely through life and
death. He seeks the solitude that so few can bear today. Yet he does not run
away from life like a nun that knows nought of it; rather does he, as a thinker,
retire from the world, because he understands men. The solitude is the best
abode for the wholesome, the free man, for the world is full of the petty and the
revengeful who darken the sun and poison life.
To live like a bird that goes and comes at will and carries no label in its bill!
This is the sesame that opens up all splendors of life: Live boldly and dare
34

danger! Build your castle on the Vesuvius, sail your ship on the unexplored seas;
love the habits of the moment, and regard everything with suspicion that tends to
estrange you from yourself, that becomes rigid and rooted. The noble character
is unreasonable, daring, reckless; it is the sign of a low nature always to keep in
mind his advantage, never losing sight of the practical. The proud man
purposely ignores the judgment of the world about him, be it good or bad.
Indeed, he absolves men in advance for their gossip, past and future.
It is not noble to hide the wretchedness of soul beneath moral concepts, as
miserable bodies are hidden by clothes. To clad the world with ethical
significance is as senseless as to ascribe to the sun particular sex. Subjection to
morality is not in itself moral: it may be caused by slavishness, hypocrisy,
vanity, self-seeking, resignation. It is always the strong and evil spirits that lead
the human mind forward. The development of moral concepts takes place
through attacks upon the dominant, the established. The supreme instinct in man
is the will to power; it is the demon in us that urges us forward. It is even the
hidden spring of charity.
A clear exposition of his criticism of morality Nietzsche gives in "Beyond Good
and Evil," and the "Geneology of Morals." He contrasts slave morality with that
of the master. Slave morality and slave insurrection began with Judaism and
Christianity, continued in the Reformation and the French Revolution, and
threatens to culminate in Democracy, Socialism, and Labour barracks. To slave
morality Nietzsche opposes the man who is not content with the life of the herd
in the valley. Long live the Superman, for the gods are dead — thus speaks
Zarathustra, the godless. The Superman is not the goal; rather is he the bridge
toward it. He is the one who overcomes the herd, the commonplace men held
fast in the web of superstition, of petrified "eternal truths," like dead flies
hanging on a spider thread. "There, — look thither, my brethren! Do ye not see
it, where the State ceaseth, the rainbow and the bridges of the Superman?"
In "Zarathustra" the philosophy of Nietzsche reaches its clearest expression; it
becomes flesh and blood in this great destroyer, pathfinder, and breaker of old
images. It is a book that affects one like a fiery wine, like a revelation — an
experience that abides throughout one's life.
The works of Friedrich Nietzsche have recently for the first time been published
in this country in a complete English edition. And though the editorial and
translatorial interpretation is often awkward and incorrect, yet no one should fail
to become acquainted with this inspiring philosopher. To know him will, in
every case, redound to the enrichment of one's heart, mind, and taste. The
edifice he reared towers to the heights.
35

* * *
IN APPRECIATION
The splendid Concert and Literary Evening given on October 25th by our
indefatigable comrades of the Group "Friends of Art and Education," of
Brownsville, N. Y., in honor of Comrade Berkman's Book, proved a great
success in every respect. After deducting all the expenses of the big undertaking,
the Group donated $35.00 towards the costs of the publication of "Prison
Memoirs."
No less inspiring an event was the Banquet given by the "Friends of Art and
Education," on November i6th, on which occasion revolutionists of various
camps joined In expressing appreciation of the past life and recent literary
achievement of Comrade Alexander Berkman.
FUNDS
OWING to other important matters, we have neglected to acknowledge receipts
of money for various funds. We publish the donations now, at the same time
thanking our friends for their ever ready and and solidaric support in behalf of
the various needs of the movement.
GUSSIE WINN FUND.
N. Feingold, Boston. $1.00; L. Warner, Boston, $1.00; Italian Socialists,
Waterbury, Conn., $3.65; Cronaca Sowersiva, $3.00; Nancy D. Pearmain, $5.00;
Comrades of Springfield, Mass., per Cronaca Sowersiva, $14.50; Comrades of
Frankfort, Ill., $2.50; G. Galeotti, Columbus, Kas., $10.00; R. N. Douglas,
Postville, la., $1.00; Peter Perruchou, Smuggler, Colo., 50c.; Chas. Cavis,
Detroit, $1.00; P. Secco, Cuba, Ill., $1.00; C. A. Miller, Moreno, Cal., $1.25;
Mother Earth Readers, Vancouver, B. C, $2.00; per Freie Arbeiter Stimme,
$6.00; F. Trandorfer, N. Y., $1.00; B. Kerr, Brooklyn, $5.00; Cronaca
Sowersiva, $5.38; C. Gleeser, $2.00; Ben Capes, St. Louis, $2.00; Collection' E.
G. Jewish Meeting, N. Y., $7.50; Collection E. G. English Meeting, N. Y.,
$28.00; H. E. Sonden, St Elmo, Ten., $1.00.



36

ALEXANDER ALDAMAS DEFENSE FUND
11th Nov. Commemor. Meeting, N. Y., $24.07; Kropotkin Jubilee, Carnegie,
Hall, N. Y., $50.00; E. G. Jewish Meeting, N. Y., $15.00; E. G. English
Meeting, N. Y., $37.77; E. G. Chicago English Meetng, $8.33; E. G. Jewish
Meeting, Chicago, $14.00; Pittsburgh E. G. Meetings, $20.30; New Castle E. G.
Meeting, $7.i5; Aldamas Mass Meeting, N. Y., per A. B., $38.30; Friends of Art
and Education, Brownsville, per A. B., $5.05; A. Schneaber, $5.00; turned over
$17.00 ($12.00 sent by "Three Friends" and $5.00 by a comrade — name
illegible) sent to us for EttorGiovannitti fund, when the latter had been closed.
ALSO COLLECTED AND FORWARDED:
To Little Falls Strike Fund: Kropotkin Jubilee, Carnegie Hall, N. Y., $75.00; nth
Nov. Anniversary, N. Y., $24.07. — To Prince Rupert, B. C, Strike Fund: 11th
Nov. Annivers., N. Y., $24.07. — To Jay Fox Defence, Caminita Defence,
Lumber Strike, La., $25.00 each from collection Kropotkin Jubilee, Carnegie
Hall, New York.
To Jack Whyte, San Diego Prison, Cal.: Collected by A. B. at Textile Hall,
Providence, R. I.: J. P. Reid, T. J. Powers, A. Casey, J. Lynch, J. J. Paterson, Ed
Ayers, J. Cummings, R. Casey, P. Lecomte, A. Gaston, P. King, J. Martn, Alex.
Berkman, C. Cross, B. Gannon, J. Midgley, N. Schwartz, $1.00 each; F. Miller,
J. Shannon, each 50c. Mother Earth, N. Y., $2.00.
VOLTAIRINE DE CLEYRE PUBLICATION FUND.
(Received per H. Kelly)
S. Rosenblatt, Atlantic City, $4.00; Kopcinell, St. Louis, $5.00; Polsky,
Coffeyville, Kas., $5.00; Otto Weik, Coiville, Wash., $2.00; L. Cowdy,
Middland, Ark., 25c.
Statement of ownership, management, circulation, etc., of Mother Earth,
published monthly at New York. Publisher, Emma Goldman, post-office
address, 55 West 28th St.; Editor, Alexander Berkman, 55 West 28th St.;
Business Manager, Dr. Ben L. Reitman, 55 West 28th St. Bondholders and
security holders — there are none.
(Signed) BEN L. REITMAN, M.D., Business Manager.
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 14th day of October, 1912.
37

(Signed) S. SONNENSCHEIM,
[seal.] Commissioner of Deeds, New York City.
(My commission expires January i7, 1913)
The Works of Friedrich Nietzsche
Beyond Good and Evil $1.25
The Birth of Tragedy i.00
Case of Wagner; We Philologists, etc.; Nietzsche
contra Wagner i.25
The Dawn of Day i.75
Early Greek Philosophy and Other Essays .... i.25
Ecce Homo (Nietzsche's Autobiography) .... 2.00
Genealogy of Morals. Poems i.25
The Joyful Wisdom i.60
Human, All Too Human. Part I i.60
Human, All-too-Human. Part II '. . i.75
On the Future of Our Educational Institutions;
and Homer and Classical Philology i.00
Thoughts Out of Season. Part I i.00
Same. Part II i.00
The Twilight of the Idols: The Antichrist .... i.75
Thus Spake Zarathustra: A Book of All and None 2.00
The Will to Power. Books I and II i.60
Same. Vol. II i.60
38

Various Essays and Fragments. Biography and
Criticism 2.00
The Gospel of Superman i.60
Postage, 15c. per volume.
A Few Letters from and to Emma Goldman
History and interviews
INTRODUCTION
"I Want Freedom, the Right to Self-Expression,
Everybody's Right to Beautiful Radiant Things"

Emma Goldman, undoubtedly one of the most notable and influential women in
modern American history, consistently promoted a wide range of controversial
movements and principles, including anarchism, equality and independence for
women, freedom of thought and expression, radical education, sexual freedom
and birth control, and union organization and the eight-hour day. Goldman's
advocacy of these causes, which many deemed subversive at the time, helped set
the historical context for some of today's most important political and social
debates.
Goldman's role in securing the right to freedom of speech in America is
especially significant. She herself was frequently harassed or arrested when
lecturing--if her talks were not banned outright. She worked with the first Free
Speech League, which insisted that all Americans have a basic right to express
their ideas, no matter how radical or controversial those ideas might seem.
Directly out of this work came the founding of the American Civil Liberties
Union, setting in motion the beginnings of the modern free speech movement in
the United States.
Goldman's impassioned advocacy of politically unpopular ideas and causes like
free love, anarchism, and atheism earned her the title "Red Emma" and led many
of the powerful to fear and hate her. Attorney General Caffey wrote in 1917,
"Emma Goldman is a woman of great ability and of personal magnetism, and
her persuasive powers make her an exceedingly dangerous woman." But others
stressed Goldman's role as an educator, one who in nationwide lecture tours
39

spread modern ideas and practices to a young and provincial country. One
newspaper editor described her as "8,000 years ahead of her time."
Now, over fifty years after her death, Emma Goldman's commitment to freedom
and equality, her political courage and personal resilience, continue to inspire
the public--and stir up controversy.
Transcription of Emma Goldman to Stella Ballantine Letter, June 29, 1919
Jefferson City, MO, 29 June 1919

Darling, mine.

There is so much, so much I want to write you. I scarcely know where to begin
& where to let off. I will have to content myself with the most essential & leave
the other when we meet - just three months from today. My birth-day - like last
year I spent it in bed. Not quite so ill, but in pain & discomfiture. The same
thing I had 2 weeks ago & which I will probably have to endure during most of
the Summer. As a result of my laying off a very funny thing happened. Funny
only because I have so short a time in here. Other wise it would have been the
beginning of a serious & bitter struggle. I have repeatedly written you how very
decent Dr Mc Nearney has always been to me. Aside of Mr P's orders that I be
permitted to go to my cell whenever I am ill, Dr Mc Nearney every time I
consulted him ordered me to my cell until I would be better. Two weeks ago
when I told him that I had endured my excruciating condition for a week before
I decided to see him said "they should have let you ought of the shop the first
day." Last Monday I began feeling badly again. By Wed evening, the chafe was
so bad that I could neither sit or walk, let alone run the machine. Yet I would not
ask to leave the shop until I completed my task. Thurs. morning I saw Dr Mc N.
He gave me the same things that so relieved me last time. I did not go down to
see him again Friday or Saturday, thinking that there was no need to annoy them
since I still had the medicine & all I really needed was rest. Imagine then my
astonishment when on Saturday morning the coloured trusty came to Kates &
my cell & said "Dr Mc Nearney ordered you to work." It was so unusual that I
couldn't believe it so I sent for S. She repeated the same thing & added, if we
fight to go to the shop we'd remain locked in. Now if I still had a long time to do
or if that had not been the first time any one connected with this institution least
of all Dr Mc Nearney had issued such an order, I should of course have
remained in my cell. As it is I went to work & pulled through the half day by
hiring some help. Not for a moment do I believe Dr Mc N ever issued the order.
There must be an hitch somewhere. I hope my condition does not get bad again
to the point of preventing my work. Otherwise I will ask to see P or have a talk
40

with the Doctor, who really has been very kind to me. So that is how I spent my
birth-day. But outside of that I was made very happy by our many friends.
However it was not until Friday Eve when I was permitted to have what was
sent me. On Thursday, at noon, 2 boxes of exquisite pink roses were sent to my
cell. One from dear faithful Lillian Kisluik 1817 Kinnon St Washington DC.
And one from our own lovely, tender Max. In the Eve came telegrams from the
Kate O Hare Committee, a beautiful washable silk Kimono, from dear Minnie
Fishman 245 A Wash Ave. N Y C. Delicious 49 W soaps and Eau de Cologne
from little Emogene Burr 2905 Clay St S F. And a box of the best Chocolates
from big hearted little Ben. Besides some letters from friends Friday, nothing
was sent up. I didn't know until Saturday morning why the many flowers which
are always sent up at noon, were not sent up. I realized Sat that it must have
been as a punishment to fit my audacious crime, of staying in without again
asking permission, a thing I was never before in all these 17 months expected to
do. However no official living could rob me of my faith & undying belief in my
dear ones. Mrs Huegel is not in town, so neither cake or chicken came. I am not
so sure they would had the lady been in town. She has done absolutely nothing
for Kate except see her once though she said so much about her friendship for K.
In the Eve of the 27th I received your beautiful birth day letter. Indeed you are
my precious own child more so than any child of the flesh could be. Then, there
was a beautiful wire from Leon Malmed, one from Ben K & friends, one from
Stewart Kerr, one from Beckie & Wm Nathanson, one from Sarah Gruber.
Letters from own Max in his usual lovely mood from H H, from Emogene Burr,
from dear own Ruthie. When we returned to our cells, the flowers were sent up.
Alas, a great many were dead, but not the spirit, that no power on earth - least of
our prison officialdom can slay. The box from you my darling contained Lilies
Hydrangeas & delicate pink carnations - all in perfect condition. A huge bunch
of red, white and pink carnations from Kitty B, a bunch of many colored Asters
nearly all dead, from Emogene Burr - she would be beautiful rambler roses from
Leon Malmed. A box of chocolates from black eyed Susan Danny. A lovely
leather picture case with Miriam's darling baby's pictures in it from Ruthie.
Among the numerous letters, I received one which moved me greatly, it was a
typewritten message signed by 50 names, Rose Pastor Stokes among them -
names of people I do not even know. Where did they get to know that June 27th
is my birth-day & that this year is my 50th anniversary? Yesterday I got two
more wires from Los Angeles, from our Com Moushe Lerner & a group of girls,
among them Gertrude Barrett. Now, sweetheart, I want all these tokens of love
& devotion acknowledged. I hope you have your typewriter. You probably have
not the addresses of all the people I mentioned, get them from Fitzie. If you only
write a postal to each from Fitzie. If you only write a postal to each it will do.
We can not let so much love go unacknowledged. Perhaps you could write a
letter to Freedom H K now edits & send my appreciation to all the comrades
41

who have so kindly remembered me. You will know best. But you must write to
Beela Newman Zilberman 33 Cypress Agyle Rd. Flat Bush NY. I am sure, she
was the one who got those fifty signatures to that beautiful message. Tell her I
was particularly stirred by their faith in me that I will never become like
Babushka. I hope with all my heart I may never, never betray their trust.
Fraternal greetings about the Kimono you sent me which is indeed lovely. But it
shows that you have no idea of the heat in the cells. Why even the thin night
gown you sent gets soaking wet in ten minutes. Nothing but nature's own dress
keeps one from melting away & that I can only wear at night. But do not bother
about another Kimono. I will manage without. I am glad you got the night-dress,
those Kate received are too hot so I returned them. Kate is indeed a wonderful
mother. Her children are so self reliant that the twins, only 10½ years old came
down alone to visit her, then did her shopping in town & then went back alone.
A City detective took them for runaway boys. But they soon informed him who
they were so he treated them to dinner instead. As to Kathleen, she has traveled
alone since she was a wee baby. Some record for Kate isn't it. She laughed
herself when I told her that my rebellious niece of yesterday now approves of
the conservative ruling of Meta L not to let Kathleen travel alone - my niece
who at the age of Kathleen was ready to travel alone to the end of the world.
Yes, we both had a good laugh at your conservatism. You must be growing old
Stella darling. I too was terribly shocked to learn of Edith's death. Poor, poor
Edith. I fear advanced ideas but increased the misery in her life. She was so
promising - and has done so little. I wonder did she do much worth while
writing the last few years, since she dropped out of everything. Poor Edith
always had a bad heart that must have brought about the end so quickly. The
only one of her middle class friends who will mourn her deeply will be Lucrece
Cox. Haven't heard from the latter in years. It is terribly sad about Edith. F
writes that our beloved Teddy now boasts of his "strong heart." I am so glad, so
glad it was strong enough to pull him through. To lose him would have been
about the last straw in the tragedies which have come to us the last 2 years. I
hope T will join you soon & that he will rest & loaf & invite his soul. One needs
to get acquainted with oneself & those we love. And poor people can do that
only when they are physically compelled to rest. My deep love to Teddy &
kisses for our sunbeam. I don't like the snapshots of the Kid because he looks so
conventional, all his other pictures make him look so free and easy and
beautiful, so unlike other children. Not so the snapshots speaking of children -
Aline sent me a wonderful Photo of her wonderful little girl. She looks most
remarcable. Aline wrote the child is the most perfect thing come into her life. I
am so glad for Aline. I am most concerned about Bob M. Am writing H W about
the matter. He has a brilliant idea which if it will not work will at least get much
publicity for Bob's case. He will write you no doubt. As to my Essays being
quoted before the investigating Committee. My life's work so no now complete.
42

I am even reaching the dullest of all bodies. Dearest mine, the temptation of
seeing your precious face when I step out of this house of the damned is so great
that I have not the heart to protest against the extravagance of your trip out here,
you see how weak even your E G is. If you do come, it will be necessary to do
so a week in advance as I shall want you to stop off in St L to see Johnson of the
Post Dispatch & R as well as our comrades. Great minds travel in the same
direction - see the conceit? I wrote you about my black dress, just the time you
wrote me. Our dear big hearted little Benie will provide me with the collars. I
had an unexpected visit from him on Monday. It was a treat I can tell you,
though we had only an hour. He then went out & brought up half of Asel's store.
Ben is simply wonderful. Oh, yes, I got a box of all sorts of things from our old
friend Leon Malmed 121 S. Pearl St Albany. Write him please, send my
affectionate greetings & thanks. Enclosed are samples of dress & cape material
Sarah got. Big Ben gave her the money for the dress silk. I don't know where
she got the cash for the cape, she paid $750 a yard & bought 3½ yards besides
the lining. I don't know why she wants so much. She has to get both the dress &
cape ready within the next two weeks as she is selling her Tailor shop. Isn't the
good for the cape beautiful? And the dress silk. Just what I want. Both will be
worth a fortune when made up. I had Ella write Sarah that the lining may make
the cape too heavy. But on second thought it occurs to me that I will need it
warm for travel, so you better write Sarah to line it. I have so many things I want
to write you, but my space is up. Ella now has three writing preveleges a week
and as she has few people to write to, she will write you for me once a week, so
you will really get 2 letters from here instead of one. Write our Canadian friend
his letter & inclosure arrived. Write M F Shields 505 Masonic Building Los
Angeles Calif. Box of oranges arrived in good condition, was fine birthday gift.
Kindest greetings & thanks. I heard from Rudin. Will write him soon.
Bushels of love to you.
E.

ALI, Emma Goldman Archive, ISSH. This letter was published in the August
1919 issue of Freedom (New York), along with a letter by AB to M. E.
Fitzgerald.

(In EG's prison letters she had only two sheets of paper and in an effort to save
space, did not use paragraphs or other breaks.)


43





44





45


Third page cannot be enlarged and made readable
46





47

Harry Weinberger to Emma Goldman, July 12, 1919
[New York] July 12th, 1919

My dear E.G.:-

What your nephew suggests can be done, but it will not gain any results or be of
any avail. I have the dates of your father correct, that is, first 89, second 94, but
the 94 date is the one that counts, and minors, that is under twenty-one are only
benefitted by it. I think, however, that we can rely on Kersner. I have spent a
good part of three days this week, finishing up the law on that end, and though
the thread is weak, it may hold. Of course, we have to take into consideration the
prejudice that we will meet, though that itself may even be in our favor, as
snapping the thread will appear like persecution and not like law.

Your two letters of July 6th and June 28th received at the same time. I duly
received Beansie's letter. He made his points very clear, and my answer is as
above. I, of course, will work out the procedure and what we will do, and advise
with you further, now that things are clear and definite. When you keep on
knocking my handwriting, you forget the incident of the telegram when the
telegrapher said my handwriting was very clear, which is more than I have ever
heard anybody say about yours.

I presume that some day the early part of next week, we will have a meeting on
the idea of amnesty day. We certainly, will have to get going shortly, but of
course, what is everybody’s business is usually nobody's business, and the
summer being on, everyone like to get a little vacation. You even say that F.
should take a vacation. Where do you think for instance, the money is coming
from for F. to take a vacation? Since you and our friend of the South are not
here, every job in the world seems to come her way, while most of us slip in
vacations and trips. However, I suppose she certainly ought to get a vacation in
somehow by hook or crook, and I suppose I absolutely ought to be sure to get
one in too, because things certainly will begin happening from about the middle
of September right through the balance of the year.

The Times this morning has a story from Coblins and Washington both, about
the release of Bob; so I think his troubles are over, and he is probably on the
way home. It is wonderful to find his father who is a judge, absolutely standing
by him without fear and without apology. So, I guess all we judges and lawyers
are not so bad. I didn't see anything about S.G. giving a list of Detroit radicals.
You guys in jail certainly seem to know more than we 'uns outside, though I do
have a kind of hazy idea that I saw something in the paper about it. The Mooney
48

strike failed of any effect because the tactitions were poor and the officers who
were to carry our orders were worse.

Our friend K. refused to ask for a pardon on the ground of his having been given
the limit of the law twice, but it seems that he is now in the hospital of the jail
suffering from diabetes, and Baldwin sends me the papers back, saying,
however, that K. is willing to ask for a pardon on the ground that it is necessary
for his health to get outside. I have fixed the papers and sent them back to
Baldwin, and hope perhaps to be able to put it through.

I did not know about your birthday until after its happening. I sure would have
been glad to send you greetings and a few flowers and my best wishes.
Certainly, my best wishes go out to you and my congratulations. For having
passed the half century mark, you can still look forward to the future with hope
and humanity, and that you can look back at the past and say that your work has
helped shape some of the ideals that in the future will bring forth fruit for the
betterment of all. As far as the A. F. of L. is concerned, the leaders represent the
rank and file to the extent that the machine controls the rank and file in that they
are satisfied with it, but that it takes too much labor and too much thought to
capture the machine, and in addition it can only be done by those who are
burning up with a new message and a new purpose and a new ideal. In politics I
have learned that lesson, that it is easier to flow with the tide, and that the path
of those who want to wreck or capture the machine to dispose of the political
bosses is as thorny as that which even Christ himself had to walk.

I sure shall try to get a vacation. Pauline is back in town, but she expects to
leave some time next week for Provincetown again to do work for Mary
O'Brien. I have back in my mind that I like a few days slow trip with my Paige
to Provincetown and stop a few days there and come back to New York. If I get
started on that, I may convince F. to go along. S. G. will not do anything for
amnesty, in my opinion. He has gone to Europe yesterday after emasculating the
Pan-American Convention. I suppose by this time you read about the Irish
meeting at Madison Square Garden and the things that happened there. It would
have warmed your soul to see the suckling dove of policemen who [culled and
pitted] the crowd and left enough in if a fire or panic would have happened, the
loss would have been terrible. Every inch of space was taken and the Irish said
what if the Bolshevik said what if the Bolshevik said would have landed them in
jail for twenty years, and the crowd did what if a Bolshevik crowd did, would
have brought down on their heads policemen's clubs and soldiers' and sailors'
bayonets. Burke Cockran at last seems to have his eyes open, and he certainly let
loose at the treaty of peace and the league of nations.
49

Your idea is a good one in reference to the deportation, to have a reception
committee, and I will take it up with T, A and Gurley.

I have not received word from Anna Sloan, nor a postal card, and I don't know
whether F. has.

There is nothing further to say at this time except that the President's speech on
peace is as nebulous as anything before he said, and the lack of information is
attempted to be hidden by the proposition that he says, I will tell you more about
it when you ask me personally.

I am,
Sincerely,

P. S. I understand that L. R. asked G. about his having given out a list, but he
denied ever having given our a list of radicals in Detroit or anywhere else or
giving any statement to the press of any list; that he had absolutely nothing to do
with giving of a list.

TLU, CtY-B, Harry Weinberger Papers. Typed header on second page, "2. -
E.G. July 12th, 1919", and on third page, "3.- July 12th, 1919. E.G."



50


June 27, 1919: Emma Goldman's 50th Birthday
On June 27, 1919 Goldman spent her 50th birthday behind prison walls, where
she was serving a two year prison term in Jefferson City, Missouri, for her
conviction, along with Alexander Berkman, for conspiracy against the Selective
Service Act of 1917 (for publicly speaking out against conscription). Today,
June 27, 2003 we remember the strong woman and men of vision from our past,
51

remind ourselves to persevere even in troubled times and re-commit ourselves to
the present and the future.
This is an especially wonderful year, because the Emma Goldman Papers
Project through the University of California Press has just published Volume
One of Emma Goldman: A Documentary History of the American Years, Made
For America 1890-1901, the first of four volumes. Below are documents from
Goldman's 1919 birthday, which the project is currently working on for Volume
Four of the series.



June 27, 1919
Emma Goldman
Missouri State Penitentiary
Jefferson City Mo.
On this your birthday in the city where you worked struggled and have most
friends we send you love and assurance of devotion. Hope that the next half
century will have greater possibilities for service and self assertion. Trust that
the coming year will see you free
Ben Reitman
Walter Merchant
52

AWS, Rose Pesotta Papers, NN.



The Goldman family, St. Petersburg, 1882. Left to right: Emma, standing;
Helena, seated, with Morris on her lap; Taube; Herman; Abraham.
(Emma Goldman Papers, Manuscripts and Archives Section, New York Public
Library)

53



Emma in Her Twenties
Portrait of the anarchist as a young woman, c. 1890.
(Goldman Collection, International Institute for Social History, Amsterdam)
54

Life and Conflict in the New World
"Helena and I stood pressed to each other, enraptured by the sight of the harbour
and the Statue of Liberty suddenly emerging from the mist. Ah, there she was,
the symbol of hope, of freedom, of opportunity! She held her torch to light the
way to the free country, the asylum for the oppressed of all lands. We, too,
Helena and I, would find a place in the generous heart of America. Our spirits
were high, our eyes filled with tears."
Emma Goldman, remembering her arrival in America
Goldman's romantic hopes were soon shattered by the dismal realities of
working-class life. Settling first in Rochester, New York, she found factory
work harder than in Russia, and joined in the growing militancy against the
inequality and inhuman working conditions that characterized industrializing
America.
The decisive moment came in 1886. Labour and radical activists held a mass
rally in Chicago's Haymarket Square on the evening of May 4 to protest the
police's brutal suppression of a strike at the McCormick Harvester Company
against a union lock out the previous day. Towards the end of an otherwise
peaceful demonstration, a bomb was thrown at police after they attempted to
stop the meeting, injuring people in the crowd and killing a police officer. In the
chaos that followed an unknown number of demonstrators were killed by the
police, and another six police officers were fatally injured (primarily by their
own gunfire), and died during the ensuing weeks, their condition avidly
followed by the public. Afterwards, the police and the press blamed Chicago's
anarchist leaders, and in this climate of hysteria a jury condemned them despite
a dearth of evidence. Seven were sentenced to death, one was given fifteen
years. Of those who received the death penalty two had their sentences
commuted to life imprisonment, and another committed suicide the night before
the execution. The remaining four were executed on the 11th of November
1887. Convinced of the defendants' innocence, the outraged Goldman became
active in the anarchist cause.
With the crystallization of Goldman's political thought came changes in her
personal life. Refusing to be trapped in the unhappy marriage of her earliest
years in America, Emma risked the stigma of divorce, leaving her husband in
Rochester and heading for a new life in New York. It wasn't long before the
young idealist became a prominent member of the city's anarchist community.
Johann Most, the great anarchist orator, recognized Goldman's eloquence and
commitment, and organized her first speaking tour. Amidst the newfound
55

excitement of political activism, she fell in love with Alexander Berkman, a
fellow Russian émigré. Together, they vowed to dedicate their lives to
anarchism.
In 1892, when Henry Clay Frick of the Carnegie Steel Company provoked a
bloody confrontation with workers at the company's plant in Homestead,
Pennsylvania, Berkman and Goldman decided to retaliate. Berkman went to
Homestead and shot Frick, but failed to kill him. Berkman was convicted and
sentenced to twenty-two years in prison. Though Goldman was involved in the
plot, she escaped the indictment because of insufficient evidence.
When President William McKinley was shot in 1901 by Leon Czolgosz, the
police immediately tried to implicate Goldman, noting that Czolgosz had
recently attended one of her lectures in Cleveland. Consequently Goldman and
other anarchists were arrested. Eventually, though, disappointed by the lack of
evidence against her, the authorities were forced to order Goldman's release.
Goldman temporarily withdrew from public life to avoid harassment. When she
re- emerged she entered one of her most politically active periods, speaking
around the country, writing on a wide range of topics, and editing her free-
spirited journal, Mother Earth from 1906 to 1917. Many, however, remained
convinced that she was a dangerous killer, thanks in large part to the anti-
anarchist agitation of the press.

A Sensationalist Portrayal of the Haymarket Bombing
The Haymarket bombing, 1886. In the late nineteenth century, anarchist events
were routinely distorted by a hostile American press. This wildly inaccurate
56

portrayal of the Haymarket bombing appeared in Harper's Weekly. The
illustration makes it appear as if the police were being fired upon. In fact, the
last speaker was just finishing when police arrived to halt the meeting. The
crowd was beginning to disperse before the bomb exploded, whereupon the
police began firing indiscriminately into the crowd.
(Chicago Historical Society)
AN APPEAL TO THE PEOPLE OF AMERICA
TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE--Fellow Citizens: As all the world knows I
have been convicted and sentenced to die for the crime of murder--the most
heinous offense that can be committed. Under the forms of law two courts--viz,
the criminal and supreme courts of the state of Illinois--have sentenced me to
death as an accessory before the fact to the murder of Officer Degan on May 4,
1886. Nevertheless I am innocent of the crime charged, and to a candid and
unprejudiced world I submit the proof.
In the decision affirming the sentence of death upon me, the supreme court of
the state of Illinois says: "It is undisputed that the bomb was thrown that caused
the death of Degan. It is conceded that no one of the defendants threw the bomb
with his own hands. Plaintiffs in error are charged with being accessories before
the fact."
If I did not throw the bomb myself it becomes necessary to proof that I aided,
encouraged, and advised the person who did throw it. Is that fact proven? The
supreme court says it is. The record says it is not. I appeal to the American
people to judge between them.
The supreme court quotes articles from The Alarm, the paper edited by me, and
from my speeches running back three years before the Haymarket tragedy of
May 4, 1886. Upon said articles and speeches the court affirms my sentence of
death as an accessory. The court says: "The articles in The Alarm were most of
them written by the defendant Parsons, and some of them by the defendant
Spies," and then proceeds to quote these articles. I refer to the record to prove
that of all the articles quoted only one was shown to have been written by me. I
wrote, of course, a great many articles for my paper The Alarm, but the record
will show that only one of these many quoted by the supreme court to prove my
guilt as an accessory was written by me, and this article appeared in The Alarm
Dec. 6, 1884, one year and a half before the Haymarket meeting.
57

As to Mr. Spies, the record will show that during the three years I was editor of
The Alarm he did not write for the paper half a dozen articles. For proof as to
this I appeal to the record.
The Alarm was a labour paper, and, as is well known, a labour paper is
conducted as a medium through which working people can make known their
grievances. The Alarm was no exception to this rule. I not only did not write
"most of the articles," but wrote comparatively few of them. This the record will
also show.
In referring to my Haymarket speech the court says: "To the men then listening
to him he had addressed the incendiary appeals that had been appearing in The
Alarm for two years." The court then quotes the "incendiary" article which I did
write, and which is as follows: "One dynamite bomb properly placed will
destroy a regiment of soldiers; a weapon easily made and carried with perfect
safety in the pockets of one's clothing."
The record will show by referring to The Alarm that this is a garbled extract
taken from a statement made by General Philip Sheridan in his annual report to
congress. It was simply a reiteration of Gen. Sheridan's statement that dynamite
was easily made, perfectly safe to handle, and a very destructive
WEAPON OF WARFARE
The article in full as it appeared in The Alarm is as follows:
"Dynamite. The protection of the poor against the armies of the rich. In
submitting his annual report Nov. 10, 1884, Gen. Philip Sheridan, commander of
the United States army, says: 'This nation is growing so rapidly that there are
signs of other troubles which I hope will not occur, and which will probably not
come upon us if both capital and labor will only be conservative. Still it should
be remembered destructive explosives are easily made, and that banks, United
States sub-treasuries, public buildings, and large mercantile houses can be
readily demolished, and the commerce of entire cities destroyed by an infuriated
people with means carried with perfect safety to themselves in the pockets of
their clothing.'"
The editorial comment upon the above, as it appeared in The Alarm, is as
follows: "A hint to the wise is sufficient. Of course Gen. Sheridan is too modest
to tell us that himself. The army will be powerless in the coming revolution
between the propertied and propertyless classes. Only in foreign wars can the
usual weapons of warfare be used to any advantage. One dynamite bomb
58

properly placed will destroy a regiment of soldiers; a weapon easily made and
carried with perfect safety in the pockets of one's clothing. The 1st regiment may
as well disband, for if it should ever level its guns upon the workingmen of
Chicago it can be totally annihilated."
Again the court says: "He [Parsons] had said to them [referring to the people
assembled at the Haymarket] Saturday, April 24, 1886, just ten days before May
4, in the last issue of The Alarm that had appeared: 'Workingmen, to arms! War
to the palace, peace to the cottage, and death to luxurious idleness! The wage
system is the only cause of the world's misery. It is supported by the rich classes,
and to destroy it they must be either made to work or die. One pound of
dynamite is better than a bushel of ballots! Make your demand for eight hours
with weapons in your hands to meet the capitalist bloodhounds--police and
militia--in a proper manner.'"
The record will show that this article was not written by me, but was published
as a news item. By referring to the columns of The Alarm, the following
comment appears attached to the above article--viz.: "The above handbill was
sent to us from Indianapolis, Ind., as having been posted all over that city last
week. Our correspondent says that the police tore them down wherever they
found them."
The court, continuing, says: "At the close of another article in the same issue he
said: 'The social war has come, and whoever is not with us is against us.'" Asst.
State's Atty. Walker read this article to the jury, and at its conclusion stated that
it bore my initials and was my article. It is a matter within the knowledge of
everyone then present, that I interrupted him and called his attention to the fact
that the article did not bear my initials and that I was not its author. Mr. Walker
corrected his mistake to the jury.
Now these are the three articles quoted by the supreme court as proof of my
guilt as an accessory in a conspiracy to murder Officer Degan. The record will





59

PROVE WHAT I SAY
Now as to my speeches. All of them with one exception purporting to be my
utterances at the Haymarket are given from the excited imagination and
perverted memories of newspaper reporters. Mr. English, who alone took
shorthand notes and swore to their correctness, reports me as saying: "It is time
to raise a note of warning. There is nothing in the eight-hour movement to excite
the capitalist. Don't you know that the military are under arms and a Gatling gun
is ready to mow you down? Was this Germany, or Russia, or Spain? [A voice: 'It
looks like it.'] Whenever you make a demand for eight hours' pay, or increase of
pay, the militia and deputy sheriffs and the Pinkerton men are called out, and
you are shot and clubbed and murdered in the streets. I am not here for the
purpose of inciting anybody, but to speak out--to tell the facts as they exist, even
though it shall cost me my life before morning!"
Mr. English, continuing, said: "There is another part of it [the speech] right here.
'It behoves you, as you love your wife and children, if you don't want to see
them perish with hunger, killed, or cut down like dogs on the street--Americans,
in the interest of your liberty and your independence, to arm, arm yourselves!'"
This, be it remembered, is a garbled extract, and it is a matter of record that
Reporter English testified that he was instructed by the proprietor of his paper to
report only the inflammatory portions of the speeches made at that meeting.
Mayor Harrison, who was present and heard this speech, testified before the jury
that it was simply "a violent and political harangue," and did not call for his
interference as a peace officer.
The speech delivered by me at the Haymarket, and which I repeated before the
jury, is a matter of record and undisputed; and I challenge anyone to show
therein that I incited anyone to acts of violence. The extract reported by Mr.
English, when taken in connection with what preceded and what followed, can
not be construed by the wildest imagination as incitement to violence.
Extracts from three other speeches alleged to have been delivered by me more
than one year prior to May 4, 1886, are given. Two of these speeches were
reported from the memory of the Pinkerton detective, Johnson. These are the
speeches quoted by the court as proof of my guilt as accessory to the murder of
Degan. Where, then is the connection between these speeches and the murder of
Degan? I am bold to declare that such connection is imperceptible to the eye of a
fair and unprejudiced mind. But the honourable body, the supreme court of
Illinois, has condemned me to death for speeches I never made and articles I
never wrote. In the affirmation of the death sentence the court has "assumed,"
60

"supposed," "guessed," "surmised" and "presumed" that I said and did "so and
so." This the record fully proves.
The court says: "Spies, Schwab, Parsons and Engel were responsible for the
articles written and published by them as above shown. Spies, Schwab, Fielden,
Parsons and Engel were responsible for the speeches made by them respectively,
and there is evidence in the record tending to show that the death of Degan
occurred during the prosecution of a conspiracy planned by the members of the
International groups who read these articles and heard those speeches."
Now I defy anyone to show from the record the proof that I wrote more than one
of the many articles alleged to have been written by me. Yet the supreme court
says that I wrote and am responsible for all of them. Again, concerning the
alleged speeches, they were reported by the Pinkerton detective, Johnson, who
was, as the record shows, employed by Lyman J. Gage, vice-president of the
First National bank, as the agent of the Citizens' Association, an organization
composed of the millionaire employers of Chicago. I submit to a candid world if
this hired spy would not make false reports to earn his blood money. Thus it is
for speeches I did not make and articles I did not write I am sentenced to die
because the court "assumes" that these articles influenced some unknown and
still unidentified person to throw the bomb that killed Degan. Is this law? Is this
justice?
The supreme court in affirming the sentence of death upon me, proceeds to give
further reasons, as follows:
"Two circumstances are to be noted: First, it can hardly be said that Parsons was
absent from the Haymarket meeting when he went into Zepf's hall. It has already
been stated that the latter place was only a few steps north of the speakers'
wagon, and in sight from it. We do not think that the defendant Parsons could
escape his share of the responsibility for the explosion at the Haymarket because
he stepped into a neighbouring saloon and looked at the explosion through a
window. While he was speaking, men stood around him with arms in their
hands. Many of these were members of the armed sections of the International
groups. Among them were men who belonged to the International Rifles, an
organization in which he himself was an officer, and with which he had been
drilling in preparation for the events then transpiring."
The records of the trial will show that not one of the foregoing allegations is
true. The facts are these: Zepf's hall is on the north-east corner of Lake and
Desplaines streets, just one block north of the speakers' wagon. The court says:
"It was only a few steps north of the speakers' wagon." The court says further
61

that, "it can hardly be said that Parsons was absent from the Haymarket meeting,
when he was at Zepf's hall." If this is correct logic, then I was at two different
places a block apart at the same instant. Truly, the day of miracles has not yet
passed. Again, the record will show that I did not "step into a neighbouring
saloon and look at the explosion through a window." It will show that I went to
Zepf's hall, one block distant, and across Lake street, accompanied by my wife
and another lady, and my two children (a girl of five and a boy of seven years of
age,) they having sat upon a wagon about ten feet from the speakers' wagon
throughout my speech; that it looked like rain; that we had started home, and
went into Zepf's hall to wait for the meeting to adjourn, and walk home in
company with a lot of friends who lived in that direction. Zepf's building is on
the corner, and opens on the street with a triangular door six feet wide. Myself
and ladies and children were just inside the door. Here, while waiting for our
friends and looking toward the meeting, I had a fair view of the explosion. All
this the record will show.
It would seem that, according to circumstances, a block is at one time "a few
steps," or a "few steps" is "more than a block," as the case may suit. The logical
as well as the imaginative faculties of the supreme court are further illustrated in
a most striking manner by the credence of the court to the "yarn" of a reporter,
who testifies that Spies had described to him the "czar" bomb and the men who
were to use them, as follows:
"He spoke of a body of tall, strong men in their organization who could throw
bombs weighing five pounds 150 paces. He stated that the bombs in question
were to be used in case of conflict with the police or militia."
The court gives this sort of testimony as proof of the existence of a conspiracy to
murder Degan. Wonderful credulity! To throw a five-pound bomb 150 paces or
yards is to throw it 450 feet or one-quarter of a mile. Gulliver, in his travels
among the Brobdingnagian race, tells of the giants he met, and we have also
heard of the giants of Patagonia, but we did not know until now that they were
Lilliputians as compared with the "Anarchist Swedes" of Chicago. The court
proceeds to say: "While he (Parsons) was speaking, men stood around him with
arms in their hands." The record, as quoted by the court, shows that only one
man flourished a pistol, not a number of men. Again, the court says: "Most of
the men were members of the armed sections of the International groups," thus
making it appear that many of these men (when there was only one who was
even alleged to have exhibited a pistol) were armed."
62

The court says: "Among them were men who belonged to the International
Rifles, an armed organization, in which he himself was an officer, and in which
he had been drilling in preparation for the events then transpiring."
Now, I challenge the supreme court or any other honourable gentlemen to prove
from the record that there ever existed such an organization as that armed
section of the American group known as the "International Rifles." It can not be
done. The record shows that some members of the American group did organize
the "International Rifles," which never met but four or five times, was never
armed with rifles or any other weapons, and disbanded nearly one year before
May 4, 1886.
The Pinkerton man, Johnson, says that dynamite bombs were exhibited in the
presence of the International Rifles. It will take corroborative testimony before
the American people will credit the statements of such a man engaged for such a
purpose, and it is well known that supreme courts have decided that testimony of
detectives should be taken with great caution.
I appeal to the American people in their love of justice and fair play. I submit
that the record does not show my guilt of the crime of murder, but, on the
contrary, it proves my innocence.
Against me in this trial all the rules of law and evidence have been reversed in
that I have been held as guilty until I proved my innocence.
I have been tried ostensibly for murder, but in reality for anarchism. I have been
proven guilty of being an anarchist, and condemned to die for that reason. The
state's attorney said in his statement before court and jury in the beginning of the
trial: "These defendants were picked out and indicted by the grand jury, they are
no more guilty than the thousands who follow them. They are picked out
because they are leaders. Convict them, and our society is safe." And in their last
appeal to the jury the prosecution said: "Anarchy is on trial. Hang these eight
men and save our institutions. These are the leaders. Make examples of them."
This is a matter of record.
So far as I have had time to examine the record I find the same fabrications and
perversion of testimony against all my comrades as exists against myself. I
therefore again appeal to the American people to avert the crime of judicial
murder, and this appeal I have faith will not be in vain.
My ancestors partook of all the hardships incident to the establishment of this
republic. They fought, bled, and some of them died, that the Declaration of
Independence might live and the American flag might wave in triumph over
63

those who claim the "divine right of kings to rule." Shall that flag now, after a
century's triumph, trail in the mire of oppression, and protect the perpetration of
outrages and oppressions that put the older despotisms of Europe to shame?
Knowing myself innocent of crime I came forward and gave myself up for trial.
I felt that it was my duty to take my chances with the rest of my comrades. I
sought a fair and impartial trial before a jury of my peers, and knew that before
any fair-minded jury I could with little difficulty be cleared. I preferred to be
tried and take the chances of an acquittal with my friends to being hunted as a
felon. Have I had a fair trial?
The lovers of justice and fair play are assiduously engaged in an effort to thwart
the consummation of judicial murder by the commutation of sentence to prison.
I speak for myself alone when I say that for this I thank them and appreciate
their efforts, but I am an innocent man. I have violated no law; I have committed
no offense against anyone's rights. I am simply the victim of the malice of those
whose anger has been aroused by the power, strength and independence of the
labor organizations of America. I am a sacrifice to those who say: "These men
may be innocent. No matter. They are anarchists. We must hang them anyway."
My counsel informs me that every effort will be made to take this case before
the highest tribunal in the land and that there is a strong hope of a hearing there.
But I am also reliably informed that from three to five years will elapse before
the supreme court of the United States can hear and adjudge the case. Since
surrendering myself to the authorities I have been locked up in close
confinement twenty-one hours of every twenty-four for six days, and from
Saturday afternoon until Monday morning (thirty eight hours) each week in a
noisome cell, without a ray of sunshine or a breath of pure air. To be compelled
to bear this for five, or even three years, would be to suffer a lingering death,
and it is only a matter of serious consideration with me, whether I ought to
accept the verdict as it stands, rather than die by inches under such conditions. I
am prepared to die. I am ready, if need be, to lay down my life for my rights and
the rights of my fellowmen. But I object to being killed on false and unproven
accusations. Therefore I cannot countenance or accept the effort of those who
would endeavour to procure a commutation of my sentence to imprisonment in
the penitentiary. Neither do I approve of any further appeals to the courts of law.
I believe them to be all alike--the agency of the privileged class to perpetuate
their power, to oppress and plunder the toiling masses. As between capital and
its legal rights and labour and its natural rights, the courts of law must side with
the capitalist class. To appeal to them is vain. It is the appeal of the wage slave
to his capitalistic master for liberty. The answer is curses, blows, imprisonment,
and death.
64

If I had never been an anarchist before, my experience with courts and the laws
of the governing classes would make an anarchist of me now. What is
anarchism? It is a state of society without any central or governing power. Upon
this subject the court in its affirmation of the death sentence defines the object of
the International Working People's association as follows:
"It is designed to bring about a social revolution. Social revolution meant the
destruction of the right of private ownership of property, or the right of the
individual to own property. It meant the bringing about of a state of society in
which all property should be held in common."
If this definition is right then it is very similar to that advocated by Jesus Christ,
for proof of which refer to the fourth and fifth chapters of the Acts of Apostles;
also Matthew xxi., 10 to 14; and Mark xi, 15 to 19.
No, I am not guilty; I have not been proven guilty. I leave it to you to decide
from the record itself as to my guilt or innocence. I can not, therefore, accept a
commutation to imprisonment. I appeal not for mercy, but for justice. As for me,
the utterance of Patrick Henry is so apropos that I cannot do better than let him
speak:
"Is life so dear and peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and
slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may pursue,
but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death."
A. R. Parsons
B. Chicago, Ill., Sept. 21, 1887. [Prison cell No. 29].
Original document housed at the Columbia University Library. Text reprinted in
Albert Parsons, Anarchism: Its Philosophy and Scientific Basis as Defined by
Some of Its Apostles (Chicago, 1887), pp. 178-85.






65


Following the Haymarket bombing incident, Albert Parsons and several other
anarchist leaders were arrested. Parsons, convinced of his innocence, had turned
himself in on the day of the trial; the others had been arrested earlier. Despite the
absence of evidence linking them to the bombing, they were convicted, and the
trial became a cause celebre for the American Left. Emma Goldman admired
their passionate commitment and believed they were innocent. The guilty
verdict and the stirring defiance of the jailed leaders had an important influence
66

on Goldman and inspired her initial interest in the American anarchist
movement.
Protest demonstrations flared across America and Europe. On November 11,
1887, Albert Parsons and three other anarchists were executed. The inscription
on the four men's tomb echoed the final words of one of the victims: "The day
will come when our silence will be more powerful than the voices you are
throttling today."
In 1893, Illinois Governor Peter Altgeld, convinced of the Haymarket
defendants' innocence after a lengthy review of the trial, pardoned the anarchists
who had received long prison sentences for their alleged role in the Haymarket
bombing.
("An Appeal to the People of America" by Albert Parsons, 1887, Columbia
University Library)
On September 6, 1901, Leon Czolgosz
assassinated President McKinley. Although
Emma Goldman did not know Czolgosz,
police and the press blamed her for the
President's death because Czolgosz had
attended a speech of hers earlier in the year.
This article, with its frightening illustration, is
representative of the way in which the nation's
press fueled the negative characterization of
anarchists. Such notoriety forced Goldman to
retreat somewhat from the public spotlight
and to adopt the name "Miss E.G. Smith,"
which she would use intermittently over the
next few years. Her strength of will, though,
is reflected in her return to public lecturing in
1902.
(Chicago Daily Tribune, September 8, 1901)

67


68

Interview in the New York World, July 28, 1892
Anarchy's Den.

. . . .
Emma Goldman, Its Queen, Rules with a Nod the Savage Reds.
. . . .
Peukert, the Silent Autonomist, the Power Behind Her.
. . . .
Berkman, the Assassin, the Tool of These Leaders.
. . . .
Their Headquarters in a Cheap Flat on Fifth Street.
. . . .
[. . .]And Here Was Emma Goldman.
In the far right-hand corner of the second room, near a dusty, cobwebbed
window, sat a woman. Alone in that gathering of hard-faced, half clad men,
enveloped in a dense atmosphere of choking smoke, she reclined placidly in a
barroom chair, reading. She seemed rather pretty. The back of her chair was
tilted against the rear wall, and her left foot rested on the rung of a chair in front
of her. A white straw hat, with a blue band streaked with dotted white, lay on the
table at her elbow.
Chestnut-brown hair that had been parted on the side fluffed over her forehead,
leaving only a trace of the part. At the back the short hair was as negligently
arranged. She has a shapely head; a long, low, white forehead; light bluish-gray
eyes, shielded by glasses; a small, finely chiselled nose, rather too wide at the
nostrils for symmetry; a colourless complexion; cheeks that once had been full,
but now are slightly sunken, giving a moderately pinched appearance to a face
that loses its beauty of form in the rapid decline to the chin. The mouth in repose
is hard and sensual, the curves gross, the lips full and bloodless.
A neck that once was rounded was still well poised, but as she turned her head
the tendons bulged out into scrawniness, and blotches here and there added to
the sharp disappointment one met with after leaving the upper part of the face. A
trim figure, five feet four or five inches tall, well moulded with hard flesh,
clothed in a white blouse, a tan-colored belt and a gown of blue sateen striped
with white, and tan shoes.
That was Emma Goldman as she sat in the Anarchist drinking den,
1
at 5 o'clock
yesterday afternoon.
69

"You are Miss Emma Goldman?"
"I am."
The reporter passed some pleasantry and she smiled. Her lips wreathed into lines
that were uglier than when her face was in repose. The two front teeth were set
wide apart, and on either side there were dental hollows, making the interior of
the mouth look black, or rather that dull opaque hue characteristic of the mouths
of some snakes. She spoke English well, with a positive tone, but there was a
noticeable accent.
Proud of Being an Anarchist.
"Yes, I know Berkman. He is a splendid man--a man of brains and courage. Am
I an Anarchist? I am, and I am proud of it. They have arrested Mollock, I see.
Well, I am sure that Mollock had nothing to do with that little affair in
Pittsburg."
2

"But Mollock and Berkman were friends?"
"Oh, yes, they were friends, and I suppose Mollock owed Berkman some
money. In fact, I know he did, and that is why he sent it to him."
"When did you last see Berkman?"
"Oh, some time ago; a week, maybe, or ten days. I don't remember exactly."
"Did he tell you where he was going and what he was going to do?"
"No, he does not make confidences with people in that way about such matters!"
"But you are his wife?"
"Ha! ha! yes, I am his wife, but in the anarchistic way, you don't know what that
is! The anarchists don't believe in marriages by law. We want no law and when
we agree to marry, why ha! ha! there you are."
"The anarchist wife then does not expect the confidences of her husband?"
"Why should we? But that is a matter I don't propose to discuss."
"You lived with Mrs. Mollock?"
3

"Yes."
70

"The name under the bell is Pollak, is that her real name?"
"I suppose so. She is Mollock's wife, as I am Berkman's. She couldn't live with
her first husband and went with Mollock."
"But Mollock signs his name to his letters to her as Pollak?"
"Is that so?"
Miss Goldman tried to be arch. It was a dismal failure she did not repeat.
"The Police Make Me Tired."
"Mollock met his wife in Buffalo, and when they came here Berkman assisted
them and we all lived together in Chrystie street. No, I don't know where his
wife is now, but I believe she has gone to Long Branch to see her husband. The
papers made a big fuss about me, but I have not been concealing myself. I have
been around town all the time."
"Were you called upon last night by Chief O'Mara,
4
of the Pittsburg police?"
"No, I was not. The police make me tired. They are mostly fools. They go about
mysteriously and do nothing. All they ever did was to put that old fool, Most
5
, in
jail."
"You are a friend of Most's?"
"A friend! The old fraud! I only wish that when I had a chance to do it, I had
made him give me some of his money. He is a coward, and an Anarchist for
revenue only."
"Were you not his Anarchistic wife before he took up with Lena Fischer
6
and
you met Berkman?"
"Ha, ha, ha!"
Again that hard, unmusical laugh. This time it had a ring of insincerity in it that
belied her words. "I was not," she said decisively.
7

"When was it that you had a chance to make him give you money?"
"You reporters are too impertinent. I hate reporters."
"Why?"
71

"Because I hate all inquisitors. I have travelled all over this country, lecturing to
the groups, and I have spoken here when that paltroon Most was afraid of the
police. Yes, I am a Russian, but from what part of Russia I don't propose to tell.
But above all I am an Anarchist."
"You are proud then of your lover's achievement?"
"Indeed I am; we all are."
"You received several telegrams last Saturday; were they from Berkman?"
"Now, I don't propose to say any more. I have told you enough, and I suppose
you will write a lot of lies. You all do, because your people must pander to the
capitalists who give you bread, and the capitalists like to read the lies about us
Anarchists."
"Won't you tell me when you last heard from Berkman?"
"That is no concern of the public. Now, sir, I will say no more. If you were to
ask questions all night I would not answer."
The Other Anarchists Aroused.
One by one the swarthy, half-clad and grimy Anarchists in the front room had
been coming near to where their queen sat. Some one of them probably gave her
a sign to say no more. A dozen stalwart black and red bearded Anarchists stood
a few feet back of the reporter. Another reporter approached and asked Emma
Goldman a question. With her eyes glancing with a significant look at the group
of her friends, she said in a voice far louder than was necessary, so loud that it
could have been heard in the front room:
"I have nothing to say. Will you not let me alone?"
As if her words were a signal, half a dozen Anarchists closed about the reporter,
waving their fists in the air and hurling oaths and objurgations in German and
Russian at the reporters. One man stood near a table with an ice-pick in his
hand.
"All Reporters Should Be Killed."
The group grew larger. Emma Goldman rose to her feet. One burly Anarchist,
broader cheated than Sullivan, clinched his fists and, with face aflame with beer,
heat and anger, exclaimed in German that all reporters should be killed.
72

"Yes, he can understand German!" he howled. "You -- --!"
"No," replied the woman in German, "he is an American." She smiled that
hollow cavernous smile, her eyes shone behind her glasses. A glad and proud
look was on her face, and while she made a faint display of quieting her slaves
her pale face took on some colour and she stood there wreathed in smiles amid
smoke and beer fumes[...]
New York World, 28 July 1892, p. 2; includes sketck of EG. The article
continues featuring brief interviews with Claus Timmermann and Josef Oerter,
both of whom protected themselves from police investigation with vague and
evasive responses to the reporter's queries. The headline refers to Joseph
Peukert, anarchist communist and a leader of tyhe Gruppe Autonomie
(Autonomy Group).
Zum großen Michel, the saloon at 209 Fifth Street and the regular meeting place
of the Gruppe Autonomie as well as the address of Die Brandfackel and of Claus
Niedermann, who edited Brandfackel while its editor and founder Claus
Timmerman was imprisoned on Blackwell's Island in 1893. The reporter later
noted that "the walls were hung with advertisements of Anarchistic papers and
on a rack were bound files of La R[é]volt[é], [Die] Autonomie and other
periodicals evidently of Anarchistic views."
Police in Long Branch, New Jersey, acting on a request from Pittsburgh police,
arrested Frank Mollock on the basis of his having sent six dollars to AB in
Pittsburgh on or around 23 July. Mollock admitted sending the money but
denied any part in AB's attemptws assassination of Henry C. Frick, the "little
affair" EG refers to in this interview. AB recounted in prison how he had tried to
collect money owed him by various comrades immediately after arriving in New
York on 10 July.
Josephine Mollock, whom EG and AB had lived with, apparently locked EG out
of the apartment under pressure from the landlord after AB’s attentat.
Pittsburgh Police Chief O'Mara had recently claimed that AB's attempt on Henry
C. Frick's life was part of an anarchist conspiracy to murder seventy millionaires
whose names appeared on a list discovered in the desk drawer of Pittsburgh
anarchist, and suspected accomplice, Henry Bauer.
Johann Most had recently been released from prison where he had served a
sentence (June 1891 to April 1892) for his incendiary speech on 12 November
1887, the day after the Haymarket martyrs were executed.
73

Lena Fischer was the sister of Haymarket anarchist Adolph Fischer, although the
reporter may have confused her with Helene Minkin, a young anarchist who had
lived with EG and AB, and later married Johann Most.
In fact, EG had been drawn to Most as a lover and mentor soon after she first
moved permanently to New York. He encouraged and helped organized her first
lectures, sparking the beginning of her public speaking career.
A reference to world heavyweight bare-knuckle boxing champion John L.
Sullivan, who held the title from 1885 to 1892.
13. letter: Goldman, Emma to Dreiser, Theodore, Sep 29, 1926
Paris, Sept. 29th 1926
Dear Theodore Dreiser
Before you leave Paris I want to let you know how much I have enjoyed the
evening with you and thank you for it. I can not begin to tell you how hungry I
am for some of the people who have been in my life in America-people who
began their struggle almost at the same time with me and whom I have seen
grow and do w[or]th while things. To me it was never so important whether
these people have chosen the thorny path that was mine, but that they set out to
give something out of the ordinary. You are among them and one who has
certainly given lasting work. And what is more, you have not stopped growing,
that is more than can be said for other of our own generation. It is therefore not
idle flattery when I tell you that my heart leaped when I read that you were in
Paris and that I might see you.
As you said yourself, I had many people around me who while I was in America
showed considerable interest in my work and friendship for me. But the Russian
deb[n]ole and the war have shifted all values, most of all the values of integrity
and fearlessness. The very people who posed as my friends are now among my
bitterest enemies. That is their right. I certainly never asked for anything that
could not be given voluntarily and gladly. But that makes my loneliness more
poignant. For now I have only very few whom I would call my friends, who
really care whether I am dead or alive. I confess I did not think that you were the
[many be]? very few because we have been thrown together less than I have
been with others. Imagine then my joy to find you so eager and so intensely
interested in my struggle and the things I want to do. Really it was a revelation,
a bright ray from a dark horizon. It warned me all over and made me feel that I
am not so terribly cut off from everything as I thought I was. I can no thank you
enough for it dear Theodore Dreiser. No matter whether you will succeed in
74

helping me in the task I have before me, my autobiography, or if you will never
be able to so any thing for me, the warm, friendly spirit or Monday night will
always remain with me. Thanks old man.
I should be very happy to hear from you occasionally. The American Express
Co. Paris, will reach me, later I will send you another address. Be sure to
address me always under E Colton.
Please remember me most kindly to Mrs Dreiser. I liked mer immensely. Good
luck to both of you and a pleasant trip back home.
Cordially,
Emma Goldman
16. letter: Goldman, Emma to Dreiser, Theodore, Jun 29, 1927
Return address:
683 Spadina Ave.,
Toronto, Ont.
Delivery address:
200 West 57th St.,
New York, N.Y.
Dear Theodore Dreiser:-
They say that confession is good for the heart so I am going to confess to you
that I was very disappointed and sad not having heard from you since we parted
in Paris. I knew of course that you must be very busy, still I had hoped that you
would drop me a line as to you success in approaching the publishers but you
did not write so I concluded that you must have forgotten me. Imagine then the
joy when I received a letter which you wrote to my friend Van Valkenburgh
expressing such rime sentiment about my proposed autobiography and also
enclosing your contribution to the fund that is not being raised.
I am not going to indulge in a lot of conventional phrases to convey my
appreciation and gratitude. I hope when the memoirs will be written that you
will feel rewarded for your interest and your friendship. I am hoping that other
people will follow your fine example and that I may soon see my way of really
starting to write.
75

I am not in the least surprised that six publishers refused to extend an advance
on something which they were not able to see. I had expected as much. Frankly I
am satisfied that no one has consented. I should have felt terribly bound and
handicapped. Now when the time comes for me to begin the work I will feel free
to write when the spirit moves me and not because I am driven. Thanks very
much just the same for your efforts.
Is there any hope of you drifting towards Canada this summer. I should very
much like to see you. Do come on a visit. Toronto is really very beautiful now
and you will find a few people here who think much of you and your work and
would be delighted to meet you.
Hoping that I might hear from you when you have time.
Gratefully,
G/R
Emma Goldman
Another letter to Emma Goldman
Roger N. Baldwin
108 Fifth Avenue,
New York, Nov. 24, 1924.
Miss Emma Goldman,
3 Titchfield Terrace,
London, NW, 8, England.
My dear E.G.:-
Your letter of November 6th deserves a much more careful, reply than I can give
you in the midst of the business which has accumulated during a two-week trip
in the West; but I cannot let it go without acknowledgement, though I cannot
give you a fitting reply.
It is so good to know about you from yourself. I have heard from others, but I
have needed this word from you to be assured of the real facts.
76

I am so anxious to see you active in the kind of work you can so magnificently
do that I an venturing to write to my friend, Harold Easki, suggesting that he and
some other of our friends avail themselves of you services on the lecture
platform.
In regard to the one practical manner in hand, namely the treatment of political
opponents by the Russian Government, let me say that Berkman seems to have
the study pretty well in hand. You don't quite seem to get the point. I could go
ahead with the list of Politicals and the other material in hand and make a fair
showing among radicals and other opposed to the tactics of the Russian
Government, but I could not get very far. In order to make a case against all the
misrepresentation and prejudice, we have got to be loaded with an abundance of
material which is disappointingly stated, so accurate that it can be challenged,
and so comprehensive that it will give a fair picture of the entire situation. To
date nothing of the sort has been done, and it is useless to try to go to the press
or to [literals] with the material in hand. That is why we felt that the situation
justified both delay and a heavy investment of time and money.
I think you underestimate the importance of this kind of work. I hope my
approach to it has not been dictated by any degree of timidity. I am not by nature
timid, but I am cautious when it comes to making statements of fact which I
cannot back up. I know how difficult it was to get the facts about American
political prisoners across to any but the radical public. It took months of hard
work to collect and distribute documentary evidence of unimpeachable
character. It is a much harder task with the Russian situation.
Dr. Ward's reports on Russia are quite the most illuminating material I have
seen. They are fairer in tone, more complete in their statements of fact, and more
documentary in their supporting evidence. He did not say, as you have heard,
that there is remarkable friendliness between Russian Politicals and the Russian
Government. His statement was a complete but dispassionate indictment of the
system of political terrorism.
Outside the particular field of persecution, I view the Russian situation as much
more complicated and much more significant from a revolutionary standpoint
than you. I haven't the time now to go into details except to say that in the
rebuilding of a national economy there are practical problems of immense
difficulty which cannot be solved by revolutionary theories. I have been through
three years of an effort to apply the principles of autonomous local control in
producing coal, coke and chemicals in [Kuzbass], Siberia. I was, as perhaps you
know, indicted last year for my participation in that work. I have been through
77

every phase, argument and practical problem that surrounds making the wheels
of industry go with the utmost possible participation of the workers themselves.
From my contact with that one experiment I am not prepared to make any
sweeping declarations regarding the compromise with capitalism. On two points
only I am quite clear bout the internal policies of Russia:
1- That the persecution of opponents is not only wholly unnecessary but
destructive of revolutionary progress, not only because it kills those whose
contributions are most needed, but because it imposes the temper of tyranny on
the ruling class;
2- That the centralization of power in the hands of a bureaucratic government is
having the same effect of killing off those spontaneous experimental growths
toward communal production and distribution which alone seem to me an
enduring basis of economic stability, in which the individual can find his widest
freedom.
I know that any discussion which covers as wide a range as this cannot be
carried on by letter, but I am confident that the points of substantial agreement
can be found between us on the particular matter we have in hand.
With warmest greetings,
Ever affectionately-
Roger Baldwin





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