6.1.3 Other Anarchists

Serbulent Turan

Other anarchists are a group with far too many variations to fully describe here. In his attempt to summarize this wild diversity, Peter Kropotkin (1927/2021) once noted that there are six major schools of anarchism: Mutualist, Collectivist, Communist, Individualist, Literary, and Christian. If we group the first three as branches of social anarchism and the next two as branches of individual anarchism, we should also quickly mention the Christian branch. Indeed, although almost all religions have been said to contain anarchistic veins (such as Taoism (Rapp, 2012), or Islam (Ramnath, 2011)), anarchist thought and behavior occupy a key place in the history of Christian reformist thought. Anarcho-Christianism, and its better known arm anarcho-pacifism, are still alive and vibrant today in communities such as Quakers, Mennonites, and Doukhobors, all of which have sought to escape the state’s control and establish their own autonomous communities. Perhaps the most famous anarcho-Christian, Leo Tolstoy, famously donated his wealth to the Doukhobor cause.

Besides religious anarchists, dozens of ideologies use the prefix ‘anarcho’ to describe their rejection of hierarchical authorities, even though they do not always share the core principles of anarchist thought described above. Ideologies such as anarcho-capitalism (which rejects the state’s presence and power but embraces free markets and the capitalistic economy), anarcho-monarchism (which embraces a feudal-like political landscape of rulers over certain territories), anarcho-primitivism (which argues for a return to a pre-historical scale of very limited political organizations) and others are often seen as either misinterpreting or purposefully misrepresenting the egalitarian nature of the ideology. Such criticism flows from the essential principles of anarchism that reject all hierarchies, domination, and unjustified and unjustifiable authority. The above variants, however, all seem to reject one form of domination for another that seems preferable in their assessment.


Share This Book