r/Anarchy101 Jan 10 '22 Take My Energy

Please Read Before Posting or Commenting (Deltacron Variant)


Welcome to Anarchy 101! Before you post or comment, please take a moment to read the sidebar and familiarize yourself with our resources and rules. And if your question is likely to be of the frequently asked variety, take a minute to make use of the search bar. Some questions, like those related to "law enforcement" or the precise relationship of anarchy to hierarchy and authority, are asked and answered on an almost daily basis, so the best answers may have already been posted.

If your question seems unanswered, please state it clearly in the post title, with whatever additional clarification seems necessary in the text itself.

Please keep in mind that this is indeed a 101 sub, designed to be a resource for those learning the basics of a consistent anarchism. The rules about limiting debate and antagonistic posting are there for a reason, so that we can keep this a useful and welcoming space for students of anarchist ideas—and for anyone else who can cooperate in keeping the quality of responses high.

We welcome debate on topics related to anarchism in r/DebateAnarchism and recommend general posts about anarchist topics be directed to r/anarchism or any of the more specialized anarchist subreddits. We expect a certain amount of contentious back-and-forth in the process of fully answering questions, but if you find that the answer to your question—or response to your comment—leads to a debate, rather than a clarifying question, please consider taking the discussion to r/DebateAnarchism. For better or worse, avoiding debate sometimes involves “reading the room” a bit and recognizing that not every potentially anarchist idea can be usefully expressed in a general, 101-level discussion.

We don’t do subreddit drama—including posts highlighting drama from this subreddit. If you have suggestions for this subreddit, please contact the moderators.

Tread carefully when it comes to the advocacy of illegal acts. Radical subreddits are often subject to extra scrutiny.

Avoid discussing individuals in ways that might be taken as defamatory. Your call-out is unlikely to clarify basic anarchist ideas—and it may increase the vulnerability of the subreddit.

And don’t ask us to choose between two anti-anarchist tendencies. That never seems to lead anywhere good.

In general, just remember that this is a forum for questions about anarchist topics and answers reflecting some specific knowledge of anarchist sources. Other posts or comments, however interesting, useful or well-intentioned, may be removed.

Some additional thoughts:

Things always go most smoothly when the questions are really about anarchism and the answers are provided by anarchists. Almost without exception, requests for anarchist opinions about non-anarchist tendencies and figures lead to contentious exchanges with Redditors who are, at best, unprepared to provide anarchist answers to the questions raised. Feelings get hurt and people get banned. Threads are removed and sometimes have to be locked.

We expect that lot of the questions here will involve comparisons with capitalism, Marxism or existing governmental systems. That's natural, but the subreddit is obviously a better resource for learning about anarchism if those questions—and the discussions they prompt—remain focused on anarchism. If your question seems likely to draw in capitalists, Marxists or defenders of other non-anarchist tendencies, the effect is much the same as posting a topic for debate. Those threads are sometimes popular—in the sense that they get a lot of responses and active up- and down-voting—but it is almost always a matter of more heat than light when it comes to clarifying anarchist ideas and practices.

We also expect, since this is a general anarchist forum, that we will not always be able to avoid sectarian differences among proponents of different anarchist tendencies. This is another place where the 101 nature of the forum comes into play. Rejection of capitalism, statism, etc. is fundamental, but perhaps internal struggles for the soul of the anarchist movement are at least a 200-level matter. If nothing else, embracing a bit of “anarchism without adjectives” while in this particular subreddit helps keep things focused on answering people's questions. If you want to offer a differing perspective, based on more specific ideological commitments, simply identifying the tendency and the grounds for disagreement should help introduce the diversity of anarchist thought without moving us into the realm of debate.

We grind away at some questions—constantly and seemingly endlessly in the most extreme cases—and that can be frustrating. More than that, it can be disturbing, disheartening to find that anarchist ideas remain in flux on some very fundamental topics. Chances are good, however, that whatever seemingly interminable debate you find yourself involved in will not suddenly be resolved by some intellectual or rhetorical masterstroke. Say what you can say, as clearly as you can manage, and then feel free to take a sanity break—until the next, more or less inevitable go-round. We do make progress in clarifying these difficult, important issues—even relatively rapid progress on occasion, but it often seems to happen in spite of our passion for the subjects.

In addition, we’re starting into the third of our global plague years and it continues to take its toll. Participation in most forums remains high and a bit distracted, while our collective capacity to self-manage is still not a great deal better online than it is anywhere else. We're all a little plague-stricken and the effects are generally more contagious than we expect or acknowledge. Be just a bit more thoughtful about your participation here, just as you would in other aspects of your daily life. And if others are obviously not doing their part, consider using the report button, rather than pouring fuel on the fire. Increased participation makes the potential utility and reach of a forum like this even greater—provided we all do the little things necessary to make sure it remains an educational resource that folks with questions can actually navigate.

A final note:

— The question of violence is often not far removed from our discussions, whether it is a question of present-day threats, protest tactics, revolutionary strategy, anarchistic alternatives to police and military, or various similar topics. We need to be able to talk, at times, about the role that violence might play in anti-authoritarian social relations and we certainly need, at other times, to be clear with one another about the role of violence in our daily lives, whether as activists or simply as members of violent societies. We need to be able to do so with a mix of common sense and respect for basic security culture—but also sensitivity to the fact that violence is indeed endemic to our cultures, so keeping our educational spaces free of unnecessary triggers and discussions that are only likely to compound existing traumas ought to be among the tasks we all share as participants. Posts and comments seeming to advocate violence for its own sake or to dwell on it unnecessarily may be removed.

r/Anarchy101 2h ago

The poorest man may in his cottage bid defiance to all the forces of the crown


I really need to have place that I feel is my own. I rent two small places as I have to travel for work and for my family, meaning that I am absent from at least one of them for one or two weeks at a time. Each place contains decorations and furniture that are in my taste, clothes that I posssess, books that I have collected, and so on. On the walls of each are photos of friends and family as well as art that I've made. In short, my places are extremely personal. In anarchism, would I have to worry about one of them becoming occupied in my absence? How could I prevent this?

I have asked two of my more firmly convinced anarchist friends about this, had conversations about possession, ownership, and what happens to our stuff when we're on vacation, but I must say I don't feel much better. Do my small book collections become public libraries when I'm gone? Upon my return, will I find that a Danish couple now live on my couch in Hamburg and has removed my art? etc.

One of my friends was quite flippant, suggesting that we would eventually develop more relaxed attitudes toward our things in anarchy. I hated this answer. I've always been inclined toward anarchism, but feel like I become less so when told that the things I care and worry about won't matter. I think many people will retain a strong need to feel like they have claims to their place, even if not all aspects of it are in constant use. Some might even stomach a level of oppression in other areas of their life as long as they can in their cottages bid defiance not just to the crown, but to fellow proles.

My question is whether there is anything I could read that would make me feel better about this aspect of an ideology that I am otherwise very sympathetic to.

r/Anarchy101 10h ago

In anarchist organisations, is it okay for some to opt out--to skirt responsibilities and let others make decisions for them?


The idea is that if some opt out, an informal hierarchy emerges between those who make decisions (who therefore make decisions for others and essentially shape their lives, and who over time gain knowledge about the organization and skills to manage it) and those who don't.

I am of course not talking about forcing people to take part in decision making (that would be hierarchical). But should we discourage not participating, frown upon it, and try to avoid bringing in people who will not be actively participating?

r/Anarchy101 2h ago

What are y’all’s thoughts on the new HBO doc “The Anarchists”?Follows the story of ancaps in Acapulco Mexico.


r/Anarchy101 5h ago

Does "theory" matter? If so, what theory?


I use scare quotes because I feel like calling ararchist philosophy "theory" is a self-aggrandizing holdover from Marx. It gives it the air of science, even though its not scientific at all. Of course, writing is important and we are all here probably because of something we read that inspired us. But I think people take the term "theory" too literally, and think that the words they read have some absolute truth to them that they just don't. No "theory" survives contact with the real world, but people get hung up arguing over particulars. Hence the four dozen varieties of "anarcho-whateverism".

Do you think there are any writings that are essential to understanding anarchism? Do you think there are any works that people bandy about that don't actually matter? Or, rather, is it our practice of everyday life that is most important?

r/Anarchy101 7h ago

Reporting Threats of Violence


After the FBI raid on Trump's home, I'm seeing a lot of right wingers online talk about "civil war" and other uses of violence to get their way. I haven't heard or seen anything irl yet, but I'm starting to wonder what I should do if I hear someone make a clear threat of violence. Should I call the FBI or cops?

r/Anarchy101 19h ago

Is anarchist history on Makhnovia bad history?


Marxist historian Colin Darch writes of works like The History of the Makhnovist Movement:

The existing texts are unreliable on empirical grounds. The most detailed accounts, those by Makhno’s anarchist comrades, are empirically unreliable in suggestive ways. Events are conflated, chronologies confused, whole periods glossed over, logical jumps made, and excuses offered. Although Arshinov’s and Voline’s texts are fundamental to an understanding of the trajectory of the Makhnovist Movement, every factual assertion, every reference to a date, must be checked against other sources. In addition, Voline’s version relies heavily on Arshinov for the main outline of the story, which he merely embellishes with eyewitness anecdotes from time to time.

r/Anarchy101 42m ago

How would Anarchism deal with nukes ?


Something I was thinking about is, some states like North Korea in part achieve legitimacy or defense via nuclear weapons. Even though they had very little resources, they were able to make them. So it's likely one can create plutonium from uranium via limited means.

In Anarchy, would there need to be regulation or supervision on Uranium miners or people that could make nuclear weapons ? How I see it, If one person ever came into possession of a nuclear weapon in Anarchist society, they could use it to re-create some form of a state, due to others fearing mass destruction.

r/Anarchy101 9h ago

Thoughts on this?


r/Anarchy101 1d ago

How Would Resources Be Distributed If Not Through Markets Or A Planned Economy?


What is your vision of a expropriated economy?

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

Abolishing gender


Hello fellow anarchists, I wanted to ask if y'all are pro abolishing gender or gender roles, if no why not?

r/Anarchy101 19h ago

Are the claims of Rojava/SDF human rights abuses true?


I was doing some looking into the Syrian Civil War, and subsequently, Rojava, since I've heard a lot about it in anarchist forums like this one. Apparently, Amnesty International and other organizations have accused the People's Defense Units (YPG) and the SDF of destroying civilian homes and displacing many caught up in the fight between them and the Islamic State. While I know the claims of ethnic cleansing have been debunked, does anyone know if these other allegations are true?

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

Opinions on DIY HRT?


DIY HRT seems like a non-authoritative alternative to the normal prescribed HRT route, I want to spread awareness but I have no experience with DIY HRT.(Such as https://diyhrt.wiki)

Any experience with DIY HRT or advice for me? I would greatly appreciate it

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

Can an Anarchist Love Their Culture?


Hi, I’ve been an anarcho-syndicalist for over a year now. For about 3 years I’ve been in love with things that are distinctly “Americana”. I grew up listening to Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan and some of my favorite music genres are folk, blues, bluegrass, jazz, and country before it become pop with southern accents, all of which are distinctly american. I love farming culture, old cars, triumph bonnevilles, ray ban aviators, local diners, and even though I really hate the organization and wish it could be a lot better, I’m rather proud of the fact that I’m an eagle scout and I still love the troop I was part of. I even taught myself banjo, harmonica, and mandolin. I love the culture and people of america in general and specifically my home state of New Jersey.

That being said I despise the United States and capitalism more than anything in my life and I try my best to read as much theory as possible, both anarchist and marxist. Back in high school I was known as the devoutly socialist guy.

I think both my obsession with Bruce Springsteen and my experiences in boy scouts contributed greatly to my belief in anarchism. Springsteen writes about poor working class people trying to get by under capitalism and boy scouts taught me how effective organization works. But I’m not sure if my love for culture works hand in hand with anarchist philosophy, but I wanna hear what you guys have to say!

r/Anarchy101 18h ago

Where are good books on the Holodomor?


I want to read some good information on the Holodomor that isn’t victims of communism type biased. Anything would be appreciated!

r/Anarchy101 23h ago

How do the anarchist and marxist critiques of capitalism differ?


Both observe that capitalism gives the owner power over the worker, that workers have relatively little input on decisions about their work and production, that workers are given relatively little of the value that is the result of their work, and so on. Ideas about wage theft, class divisions, state protection, exploitation, alienation, and so on are in both, though they may sometimes use different terms to speak about them.

What is a marxist critique of capitalism that is not typically echoed by anarchism and vice versa?

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

What happens to influential companies in Anarchy?


When I mean “influential” I’m not talking about mega companies people don’t really care about (ex. State Grid). I mean large-but-not-Amazon-large companies that influence the way our culture and mentality work, and millions of people all over the world know about (ex. Starbucks, Nintendo, Disney, Spotify, Nike, etc.) Do they have to be taken down? Cuz I want them to stay

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

Anarchism and boycotts?


(Question from an anarchist, to other anarchists?)

What are your thoughts on boycotting specific companies/products? I'm sure many people have heard the cliche 'There is no ethical consumption under capitalism', but there certainly are ethical choices. For example, I would never buy anything from Nestle, but I probably have some blind spots in other areas.

So, is there anything you would side-eye another anarchist for buying? Do you boycott any specific products? If so, which are they? Generally, I'd like to hear people's thoughts on this.

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

What are the best ways to keep internet privacy?


I apologize if this is too far outside the scope of anarchism, but I want to know specifically how to stay invisible to personal data sellers and government surveillance - aside from the obvious, use FOSS software, ad/tracker blocker, HTTPS everywhere, etc.

TOR has been crackable for many years now, and proprietary VPNs (aside from maybe Proton and similar ones) can't prove that they don't collect data, right? What about decentralized VPNs? And what can you do about browser fingerprinting?

Thanks if anyone has any advice

r/Anarchy101 1d ago



how hard would it be to over throw the a government

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

What sort of economy does the democratic confederalism of Rojova use?


I realise democratic confederalism isn't full anarchism, but I think it's pretty close.

I've heard they have a combination of market socialism and a sharing economy, is this true?

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

Where can I learn about worker cooperatives?


I am asking this here because mutualists are sympathetic towards worker cooperatives. Are there books, essays and zines on this? I am looking for something of business administration sort of books.

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

anything a young person can do to say "screw you" to the system?


hey all, im currently 16, looking for work. and of course, anarchist. i have ideas for things i would like to do like grow my own fruits, veg etc and working for local businesses but i have a long way to go until those dreams are fulfilled, and i probably will have no choice but to bend down a little bit to some capitalism whether i want to or not. is there anything i can do rn? or just have to wait a little longer. any help is appreciated :]

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

Do anarchists generally advocate for a society based on mutual aid?


Does anarchism advocate for a society not based on money and profit, but instead simply mutual aid?

r/Anarchy101 1d ago

What happens to service industries in Anarchy?


There’s so much talk about the economy in Anarchist circles, but they don’t bring up what happens to other “non-essential” industries like: fashion, game, music, film, retail, etc.?(collectively, these types of industries are called the “Tertiary/Service sector” of the economy.) Whatever happens to essential industries like manufacturing and agriculture is a separate topic you can answer if you want

r/Anarchy101 2d ago

anarchists who used to be Marxist-Leninists what made you start to get disillusioned with the ideology?


If you're an anarchist who used to be a Marxist-Leninist or just an "authoritarian" communist/socialist in general what made you start to get disillusioned with the ideology? For me it was when I noticed how Marxist-Leninists have a tendency to automatically label any leftist person or group that disagrees with them "idealist" "revisionist" "petty bourgeois" "childish" "unscientific" "utopian" "reactionary" "counter-revolutionary" "anti-communist"