Georges Vincey

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Georges Vincey
Georges Vincey.jpg
Georges Vincey (unknown date)
Born ca.1900
Died February 1960
Occupation individualist anarchist

Georges Vincey (died February 1960 aged approximately 60) was a French metal worker and militant anarchist. In October 1954 he became the first administrator of the newly reinvented Monde libertaire, a monthly publication produced on behalf of the Paris based Anarchist Federation.[1]


At the end of the First World War Vincey, then a metal worker ("ouvrier serrurier") joined a group called "Jeunesses syndicalistes" ("Young Trades Unionists").[1][2]

Through the individualist anarchist ideas then current, he later found himself in sympathy with what was becoming the Libertairan Movement.[3] His robust intellect rapidly came to focus on the economic problems of the post-war years.[4] The Anarcho communist Georges Fontenis would later described Vincy's philosophy at this time as that of a "Stirnerian individualist".[5] Directly after his death in 1960 Vincey was reported as having often described himself to Émile Armand as "an individualist adherent of the organisation founded on the responsibility of the free individual, within a group structure determined by collective agreement, to organise without any constraints the work he has accepted".[4]

He became aligned with the Anarchist Union ("l’Union anarchiste") and then, from 1936, with the Anarchist Federation of the French-speaking world ("la Fédération anarchiste de langue française").[6] Following the German invasion of May/June 1940 he took part in clandestine meetings which enabled the anarchists of Paris to maintain contact.[7]

After the liberation Georges Vincey was one of those who re-established the French Anarchist Federation. Others included Robert Joulin, Henri Bouyé, Georges Fontenis, Suzy Chevet (fr), Renée Lamberet, Maurice Joyeux, Aristide (fr) and Paul Lapeyre (fr), Maurice Fayolle, Maurice Laisant, Giliana Berneri, Solange Dumont, Roger Caron, Henri Oriol and Paul Chery.[8][9]

Between 25 and 27 December 1945 he took part in the founding congress of the French Anarchist Federation, applying the idea of Synthesis anarchism, and made up of excluded groups and former militants who had left the old fractured and more narrowly focused anarchist groupings in response to practices by those groupings deemed gratuitously authoritarian. Basic principals were drawn up for the new Federation to maximise the numbers while embracing a disparate range of anarchist views. This was challenging, as the instigator of the reconstituted Anarchist Federation, Maurice Joyeux found himself obliged to compromise with individualist anarchists such as Vincey. The outcome was an operational approach that Joyeux described as "impossible": requiring decisions to be unanimous had the effect of giving every member a power of veto over the Federation's direction.[10]

In October 1954 Georges Vincey was appointed administrator of the anarchist movement's collectively produced journal, the Monde libertaire. He would retain these responsibilities till forced out by his illness in May 1959.[11]


The historian Cédric Guérin writes that Georges Vincey was

"... famously an individualist ... but not a fierce opponent of the organisation. On the contrary, he backed an appropriately structured organisation, which may explain his support for the "Synthesis" Anarchist Federation after 1953. A good orator, he was one of those who advocated oral propaganda ... . If, in the judgement of Maurice Joyeux, the individualist anarchism of Vincey was the anarchism of a powerful personality, Joyeux nevertheless stressed in his own memoirs the important role that individualists like Vincey could perform, especially when conferring total respect on the fundamental principals of the anarchist philosophy".[10][12]


  1. ^ a b RD (11 June 2010). "VINCEY, Georges: ouvrier serrurier - FAF – FA - Paris 3". Le Monde Libertaire, n° 58, mars 1960. Dictionnaire international des militants anarchistes. Retrieved 15 October 2015.
  2. ^ Georges Brassens, Roger Toussenot, Lettres à Toussenot, 1946-1950, Textuel, 2001, page 55.
  3. ^ David Porter (author and translator) (2011). Eyes to the south: French Anarchists and Algeria. AK Press, Edinburgh & Miami University Libraries. p. 83. ISBN 978-1-84935-076-1.
  4. ^ a b "Georges Vincey est mort". "...un individualiste partisan de l'organisation basée sur la responsabilité de l'individu libre dans le cadre déterminé par des accords collectifs, d'organiser en dehors de toutes contraintes le travail qu'il avait accepté.". Le Monde libertaire, Paris. March 1960.
  5. ^ Georges Fontenis, Changer le monde : histoire du mouvement communiste libertaire, 1945-1997, Éditions Le Coquelicot/Alternative libertaire, 2000, page 50.
  6. ^ Michel Sahuc (2008). Un Regard noir: La mouvance anarchiste française au seuil de la Seconde Guerre mondiale et sous l'occupation nazie (1936-1945). Éditions du Monde Libertaire. p. 118.
  7. ^ David Berry; Andres G. Graf (compiler/editor) (2001). The French Anarchist Movement 1939-1945. Anarchisten gegen Hitler: Anarchisten, Anarcho-Syndikaliten, Rätkommunisten in Widerstand und Exil. Lukas Verlag, Berlin. p. 85. ISBN 3-931836-23-1.
  8. ^ Roland Bosdeveix (2006). Maurice Joyeux Graine d’ananar. Éditions du Monde Libertaire. p. 34. ISBN 978-2-71860-045-1.
  9. ^ Roland Biard (1976). Histoire du mouvement anarchiste en France (1945-1975). Éditions Galilée. p. 85. ISBN 978-2-71860-045-1.
  10. ^ a b Cédric Guérin (2000). Anarchisme français de 1950 à 1970' Mémoire de Maitrise en Histoire contemporaine sous la direction de Mr Vandenbussche. Charles de Gaulle University – Lille III,Villeneuve d’Ascq.
  11. ^ Carole Reynaud Paligot, Parcours politique des surréalistes, 1919-1969, CNRS, 1995, page 282.
  12. ^ « Individualiste notoire, Georges Vincey n’était pas pour autant un farouche adversaire de l’organisation ; au contraire, il était partisan d’une organisation assez structurée, ce qui peut expliquer son adhésion à l’organisation synthésiste de 1953. Bon orateur, il était un de ceux qui préconisait la propagande orale, notamment à Marseille. Si selon Maurice Joyeux l’individualisme anarchiste de Vincey était un anarchisme de forte personnalité, il n’oublie pas dans ses mémoires de souligner le rôle important que peuvent jouer des individualistes tel Vincey, notamment en louant leurs respect total des principes fondamentaux de la philosophie anarchiste. »