Emma Goldman was a famous anarchist in the early 20th century. Goldman, who played a major role in developing anarchist political philosophy, also wrote on her political beliefs and many other subjects.
Presented are numerous well written, well udnerstood essays. Essays ranging from the topics of anarchism, women's suffrage, prisons, patriotism, and everything else relevant. If you wish to get into Emmas work I suggest you get this, because its not expensive, but yet it contains a number of essays. If you want the whole shebang get the emma goldman reader. Also check out Alexander Berkman and Peter kropotkin, 2 famous anarchists of the era.
Emma Goldman's essays collected
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 17 years ago
I've heard from many people who are interested in reading books about anarchism (allthough i think the term "anarchism" is incorrect) that most books about anarchy are "heavy" and difficult to get through much less understand because they aim their content to readers that have a good backround of political understanding (its terminologies, its "schools" of thought, its currents and so forth..).If this happens to be your problem then this book will be ideal if you want to discover what this political philosophy stands for and what its issues are and, indeed, have been for a long time.Emma Goldman, a woman with as fiery a personality as they come, has put together here a number of essays about anarchy that are easy to comprehend and definately thought inspiring. Despite this book having been first published in 1917 it loses nothing of its importance in the current state affairs as all of the issues Goldman deals with not only remain unsolved but they have -in the meantime- become a social burden or a social disaster much worse than back in her time. Oh, and back in her time things already looked bad enough.What you get here is, summarily, the following:-anarchy, what is it and what does it stand for? Beyond the mainstream media cliches anarchy stands for personal and societal freedom of the highest conceivable order. A freedom, anarchists insist, that is not a utopia. It's basically a hard lesson in crushing your illusions and opening unthought of doors of perception of what freedom really means. That would be then something other than being in a cage and having food thrown in. Even if the cage is invisible..-Hard punching essays about the prison system and the everself-destructing notion of patriotism.. Funny how every line one reads in there could've been written yesterday. Not much has changed. After decades and decades of the imprisonment system has society become more law-abiding? That would be a thundering no. Why is that? As for patriotism, the incredible notion of dying for your country the same one that might be killing you slowly while draining you of all your resources and enslaving you in a wage system and a daily mindless-toil called "work" . here, Emma has to say a lot. There's always a reason to die if someone is going to make money out of it (that would be NOT you) and dress the whole "cause" up as patriotic..-The hypocrisy of puritanism as well as the seemingly eternal joke of marriage and "love" are also given the treatment they deserve. In a society based on hypocrisy alltogether, you have to start on a personal level. You have to lose your personal chains before you attempt to free others. Your personal chains begin with the things you've been taught to hold most sacred (as is generally the case). The morals that are not yours. Whom do they really serve? The institutions that everyone notices they have fail and yet most continue to serve them. Why? How can this possibly be? These are just some of the issues dealt with in Emma'
Very good collection of Goldmans essays
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 19 years ago
The other reviewers are correct in stating this is not the best collection of Emma Goldman's work, but for an introduction to her thought it will serve that function perfectly. There are some of her best here, "Anarchism: What it Really Stands For," "Minorities vs. Majorities," "Prisons: A Social Crime and Failure" and "Patriotism: A Menace to Liberty" are some of the most powerful anarchist statements you will find. Much of the last half of the book deals with women's rights, Emma was also a feminist. Other books may be more complete, but if you want the other essays they are available all over the Internet.I also recommend Michael Bakunin's works, especially "God and the State."
as relevent today as it was in Emma Goldman's day
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 20 years ago
Being historically one the more important yet obscure figures in American history, Emma Goldman's anarchist thought is as relevent today as it was when she wrote "Anarchism, and Other Essays". In an age where political apathy, intellectual ignorance and spiritual corruption are the failings of modern civilzation, Emma Goldman's Enlightenment thought is illuminating in its message of the power of direct action as she so lucidly illustrates:"Anarchism urges man to think, to investigate, to analyze every proposition... (Anarchism is 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."The new social order rests, of course, on the materialistic basis of life; but while all Anarchists agree that the main evil today is an economic one, they maintain that the solution of that evil can be brought about only through the consideration of every phase of life,--individual, as well as the collective; the internal, as well as the external phases."A thorough perusal of the history of human development will disclose two elements in bitter conflict with each other; elements that are only now beginning to be understood, not as foreign to each other, but as closely related and truly harmonious, if only placed in proper environment: the individual and social instincts. The individual and society have waged a relentless and bloody battle for ages, each striving for supremacy, because each was blind to the value and importance of the other. The individual and social instincts,--the one a most potent factor for individual endeavor, for growth, aspiration, self-realization; the other an equally potent factor for mutual helpfulness and social well-being."From just that little exerpt it is easy to understand why any and all authority was terrified of Emma Goldman and why her important contributions to society have been muzzled from histories - down the "memory hole" to use an Orwellian expression.Again, "Anarchism, and Other Essays" is as relevent today as it was in Emma Goldman's day and necessary material for anyone truly interested or involved in altruistic direct action.
This woman should be honored on our money!
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 20 years ago
A masterpiece, pure and simple- that's the best way to describe this book. Emma Goldman was a great champion of freedom, and a martyr for it, as well.America's near silence regarding this great hero is shameful. Read this book- and see the movie "Reds" and you'll know why.Of course, you'll find things to disagree with in this book, but the woman's committment to true freedom is undeniable.
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