Talk:Anarchism in Spain

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Former good article nomineeAnarchism in Spain was a good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
Article milestones
August 17, 2004Peer reviewReviewed
January 16, 2006Good article nomineeNot listed
Current status: Former good article nominee
edit·history·watch·refresh Stock post message.svg To-do list for Anarchism in Spain:

  • CITE THROUGHOUT. The article was written before this was standard Wikipedia policy.
  • Acquire an image for the intro that applies universally to Spanish anarchism.
  • Outline the role of the anarchists in the Civil War with details.
  • Add information on the specifics of collectivizations and occupations during the Revolution.
  • Expand information on anarchism in modern Spain.
  • Expand feminism section.
  • Work on making the article NPOV without weakening it needlessly (i.e, introducing conflicts over the legitimacy of anarchism; the article should be centered on the actions and thoughts of the anarchists). Remove florid descriptions or blatant praise where/if they still exist.
  • Create articles for all red linked pages.
  • Eventually get approved as a Featured Article
Priority 2

Excellent article[edit]

Impressive article. I feel that I should something more to equate to it's grandness, but don't know anything. Good work. And I changed somewhere in the article "socialist comrades" to just "socialists". Many of anarchists of those days had a hard time seeing socialists as comrades and so do I. - Non-Sec

Good work, an interesting read! -- Sam Francis

Thank you much. This is my first major article on wikipedia, I hope to make it one of the best, in 06:48, 12 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I've been hoping someone would do this, it's an interesting topic and much needed!
Wow. I've been meaning to read up on anarchism for a while; I have lots of ebooks, websites, etc. on it, but this will probably be my springboard...a history of anarchism in my homeland, what more could I ask for? Well done. Lockeownzj00 22:59, 27 Aug 2004 (UTC)
Seconded. Thanks for all the hard work. • Benc • 00:00, 28 Aug 2004 (UTC)

The article is very good. Something I think should be added, but I don't know enough to properly add it myself: discussion of anarchism in contemporary Spain should include something about anarchist atheneums and bookstores. -- Jmabel 01:07, Aug 28, 2004 (UTC)


Word.- 21:44, 23 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Superb article! Je.est.un.autre (talk) 03:20, 21 June 2014 (UTC)


As noted on the WP:FAC page, this article needed to standardize its capitalization of "Anarchist", "Communist", "Socialist", and "Republican". I attempted to do so using the following criteria:

  1. Capitalize when referring to specific political parties.
  2. Lowercase when referring to the movement.
  3. Do not adjust caps for quotations.

These conventions seem to be standard. (See: anarchism, communism, socialism...) I may have miscapitalized here and there though — if you find any mistakes, please feel free to fix them. • Benc • 02:18, 28 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Spanish Revolution[edit]

I added the tag "Main Article: Spanish Revolution" under the "1936 Revolution" header. At present, they are indeed the same; but it would be better to have an entire article on the Revolution, and it would keep this article from getting too large in the future. 23:45, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Spanish Wikipedia[edit]

I've just noticed that there is a more or less corresponding article at es:Movimiento_obrero_español. The articles don't correspond exactly in their scope, but there is very heavy overlap. (It looks like our article is on the whole the stronger one, but theirs has some material we lack.) I will interwiki link the two and also do a general translation of the Spanish-language article at Talk:Anarchism in Spain/From Spanish so it can be "mined" by whoever is working on this article; there may also be useful material for some other articles. -- Jmabel 07:55, Oct 11, 2004 (UTC)

It's done. I suggest using strikethrough to mark whatever is either already in this article or is mined for it; also, if it is mined for a different article, a note indicating what article the information was moved to would be helpful. -- Jmabel|Talk 00:18, Oct 13, 2004 (UTC)

Hugh Thomas[edit]

Why was "Thomas, Hugh. The Spanish Civil War. ISBN 0375755152" dropped from the list of references? -- Jmabel | Talk 03:45, Nov 14, 2004 (UTC)

The book is mostly on the Spanish Civil War, with only peripheral comments about the anarchists. I included it as a decent overview of the war, but it's really more suitable for a "further reading" then "references" section, and I believe its included in the References section on the Spanish Civil War page. 20:11, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Cool, I'd just noticed the uncommented deletion. -- Jmabel | Talk 20:22, Nov 22, 2004 (UTC)

POV vandalism[edit]

I just reverted the article from this this POV revision:

The previous article was an unacceptable whitewashing of the murder, terrorism, and enslavement perpetrated by the so-called "anarchists" of Spain.
Now that I have your attention, a rewrite by those who are not driven mad by their lust for terror and mass-murder would be appreciated.
References, further reading "What really happened in Catalonia, by James Donald.
"The Anarcho-Statists of Spain: An Historical, Economic, and Philosophical Analysis of Spanish Anarchism" by Bryan Caplan.

The links provided offer no convincing evidence. The first link is clearly POV with out-of-context quotations and very general claims. The second is a well-written article though it seems to group every action of the anti-fascist revolution in Spain to be the sole work of the anarchists and is written in highly rhetorial language---

None of this implies, of course, that similar atrocities were not committed by the Nationalists and by non-Anarchist forces on the Republican side. It is to be expected that Communists, fascists, and the other bloodthirsty zealots of the 20th century would brutally murder people for their beliefs. One would be surprised if moderate Republicans, moderate Socialists, and moderate monarchists restrained themselves from widespread murder in the midst of a fratricidal civil war. But one would hope that a movement condemning the state for its age-old brutality, and advocating an end to all human domination, would have behaved differently. Instead, it is clear that Anarchist militants were at the vanguard of the murder squads on the Republican side.

In short, it's a paper written beyond the point of simply clarifying history as it is heavy with it's own agenda.

I recommend that mentions of violence committed by anarchist factions in Spain be included in the article if they were not actions normally committed during wartime but otherwise not worthy of special attention.--albamuth 07:49, 17 Jan 2005 (UTC)

I think it's made pretty clear in the article that some anarchists committed acts of violence. "Enslavement" and "mass murder" are pretty fantastic claims, though - I've seen them made before, mostly in stalinist/fascist propaganda rags from the time. Anarchist violence was political violence - assassinations, the like and not approved of by all in the movement. 20:26, 17 Jan 2005 (UTC)
In our attempts to be NPOV, it's appropriate to include links to pages from both sides of a contested issue. See, for example, Rape of Nanking, where we link to pages that I personally dislike that attack Iris Chang's book. However, I support leaving them linked (even if the article on Wikipedia does not take their line, as it should not) to allow people to see both sides. The same should be done here. The first page clearly has an axe to grind, but at the same time it's not wholly lunatic - they themselves link to a page which rebuts them (always a good sign), and although you may feel that the quotes are out of context, they are lengthy, not tiny snips which are more prone to mis-interpretation (and always a bad sign). Noel (talk) 15:56, 2 September 2005 (UTC)
PS: Please review carefully our page on Wikipedia:Vandalism. That addition, although improper (it's not in the correct form) was not vandalism. There are few things I find more irritating that bogus claims of people with one POV that the edits of people with an opposing POV are "vandalism". You do get plus points for putting the clip here, though, rather than silently deleting it. Noel (talk) 15:56, 2 September 2005 (UTC)

Featured article?[edit]

I've just stumbled across this article, and I have to say, it's fabulous! Bravo to everybody who contributed. When the dust settles on the POV vandalism just mentioned, what say I nominate it as a featured article candidate? QuartierLatin1968 08:15, 17 Jan 2005 (UTC)

It's been nominated before, and failed. People felt it was too "sympathetic" to the anarchists; I don't think anyone active in it wanted to rework it to address that criticism. -- Jmabel | Talk 19:15, Jan 17, 2005 (UTC)


What I added on the todo list might seem a bit vague. People criticized the neutrality of the article in the past when it was nominated for Feautred Article status. What I fear is a line-by-line butchering of the article to include the viewpoints of the opponents of the anarchists at every stage. I think criticisms of anarchism in general are made clear in other articles, so they should not take up space here. I have tried to make the article as neutral as possible without weakening it or slowing it down. Anyone have any thoughts on this issue? 03:01, 7 Feb 2005 (UTC)

I think it needs to be made more neutral. Anarchism doesn't need to be dissed at the end of every paragraph, but it could be made to sound less self-congratulatory. Note that I am not saying this out of some anti-anarchist agenda, since I am a cenetista. I think I might tweak a couple of things. Guerrillero 19:37, 4 Apr 2005 (UTC)

"About the CNT-CGT split=[edit]

Hello, I am from Spain and I edited this part. By the way, the article is really good. I just wanted to add that part because: 1) it was requested 2) I think that was the main cause for the split 3) Even if it wasn't, it really makes the difference in today's world between the CGT and the CNT and explains the larger size and importance of the CGT. It is clear that CGT has representatives where anarchism has a long tradition, like in Catalonia and in the railroad sector, but I want to point out that their importance is really much smaller compared to the two larger trade unions. The CNT is viewed as more purist and they really criticize the existing industrial relations model and their bureaucracy and bureaucrats. For example, they commonly describe liberados sindicales (workers who don't work because they have been chosen by their colleagues as their representatives) as parasitos sociales (social parasites), a harsh criticism. They are also against the canon sindical (money that workers pay their union to support it) as they view it as yet another way to exploit the worker. Speaking of the problem of what formerly belonged to the CNT and was seized by Franco and has to be given back someday, it seems impossible to do it due to the split. Anyway, not even mery moderate political parties have recovered fully everything they owned. There are many problems and probably lack of political will to do it. Update on this one (today is 11/29/2005): Apparently, the new socialist government has decided to give back to the CNT most of what belonged to them (and not to the CGT, who will get nothing). It has probably done it because it has also given back to the UGT (the socialist trade union) what belonged to them, just in time for the UGT to repay an important credit with this money. I want to point out that the government has given the unions a monetary compensation and not the actual buildings and presses that belonged to the unions. That would be impossible.

Thank you! Please add more to the article if you can. I don't know so much about modern Spanish anarchism, I guess because it hasn't been documented as well. 18:49, May 21, 2005 (UTC)

Spanish translation[edit]

Somebody can help me with the translation?, i am working in es:Anarquismo en España but my english isn't perfect, and i would like if somebody could help me... ( in i haven't found this help :( ) Celeron 16:52, 9 October 2005 (UTC)

I'll look over it when I have some time. :) --Tothebarricades 05:19, 3 January 2006 (UTC)


Should there be some mention of Esperanto? --Error 02:11, 29 November 2005 (UTC)


where can i find the evidence for this: "Despite the critics clamoring for maximum efficiency, anarchic communes often produced more than before the collectivization."? 21:39, 26 December 2005 (UTC)

I think there are charts suggesting such in Hugh Thomas's The Spanish Civil War, a work which is generally indifferent or mildly hostile to the anarchists. In an essay by Gaston Leval from Sam Dolgoff's work on the anarchist collectives: "The collective modernized industry, increased production, turned out better products, and improved public services...Through more efficient cultivation and the use of better fertilizers, production of potatoes increased 50% (three-quarters of the crop was sold to Catalonia in exchange for other commodities ...) and the production of sugar beets and feed for livestock doubled. Previously uncultivated smaller plots of ground were used to plant 400 fruit trees, ... and there were a host of other interesting innovations. Through this use of better machinery and chemical fertilizers and, but no means least, through the introduction of voluntary collective labor, the yield per hectare was 50% greater on collective property than on individually worked land. These examples finally induced many more "individualists" to join the collective." Anthony Beevor's book The Spanish Civil War praises the collectives, saying something like, they were the most effective and productive units during the war - I'm greatly paraphrasing since I don't have the book with me. I forget if he provides raw evidence to back these claims up. --Tothebarricades 05:18, 3 January 2006 (UTC)

Spanish Communist Party[edit]

I think this might be an informative point to include, but I'm not sure where or how to put it. I'll leave it to the regulars. To show just how counterrevolutionary the Communist Party had become, the following was a popular campaign slogan:

"To Save Spain from Marxism, Vote Communist"

--from "Emma Goldman In Exile", by Alice Wexler, pg. 209, Beacon Press Books, 1989

I'm familiar with the quote, but do you know its origins? I don't think it came from the anarchists but I could well be wrong. --Tothebarricades 09:54, 6 January 2006 (UTC)

Well Wexler cites it as being from Broue and Temime (both names have 'french marks over 'e'....I don't know how to make my computer do that), 'The Revolution and Civil War in Spain, pg. 211, as well as Brenan, 'The Spanish Labyrinth', pg. 325.

On Pi i Margall[edit]

I just dleted the part where it sail that Pi i Margall claimed that Anarchism was related to federalism during the Civil War. Pi died in 1901, so he was waaaay dead when the Cicil War ocurred. Also, I don't find acurate to describe him as a follower of proudhon, since his first theories on federalism preceded Proudhon's for some years.


In Barcelona, squatting is widespread; many of these squatters hold anarchist views. Anarchists produce a local calendar called Info Usurpa [1] that lists around forty explicitly anarchist squats that are organized as social centers (Centros Sociales). These social centers put on events ranging from concerts, community dinners, and workshops to language courses and free internet cafés. They have faced strong opposition from the authorities, including raids and evictions. In 2004, following the eviction of the squat L'Hamsa, squatters smashed the windows of banks and real estate offices, set dumpsters on fire, attacked police cars, and spray painted slogans on the city's walls.

I was thinking of making this change to part of the Today section. I'd like to add something about how this stuff isn't unique to Barcelona, that it's common throughout the country, but haven't figured out how to word it yet. any thoughts? Murderbike 05:07, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Usage of "Neoliberal"[edit]

I have edited one word of the article: changing "western neoliberal democracies" to "western liberal democracies". The passage in question refers to the time period of the Spanish Civil War in the 1930's, while neoliberal is a term from the 1960's at the earliest. Therefore, use of neoliberal in this context can be classified simply as a historical inaccuracy. I have gone to the trouble of posting this on the discussion page because I have no expertise in liberalism or political theory, so I have no way of knowing what the best word to use would be. I offer "western liberal democracies" merely as a suggestion and as a call for someone knowledgeable to make a final decision. Gabriel Orion Crawford 03:11, 30 October 2007 (UTC)

"Western Liberal Democracies" is a much better term, neo = new and the idea of 'neoliberalism' and 'neoconservatism' dates from the post-war period. Neoliberalism usually refers to Friedmanite economies such as that early on in Pinochets Chilean regime. Britain and France were not neoliberal in 1936 (nor are now) as they still had partly socialized economy. Speerross (talk) 11:51, 7 January 2008 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:CNT - La Barrera Inexpugnable.jpg[edit]

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Image:CNT - La Barrera Inexpugnable.jpg is being used on this article. I notice the image page specifies that the image is being used under fair use but there is no explanation or rationale as to why its use in this Wikipedia article constitutes fair use. In addition to the boilerplate fair use template, you must also write out on the image description page a specific explanation or rationale for why using this image in each article is consistent with fair use.

Please go to the image description page and edit it to include a fair use rationale. Using one of the templates at Wikipedia:Fair use rationale guideline is an easy way to insure that your image is in compliance with Wikipedia policy, but remember that you must complete the template. Do not simply insert a blank template on an image page.

If there is other fair use media, consider checking that you have specified the fair use rationale on the other images used on this page. Note that any fair use images uploaded after 4 May, 2006, and lacking such an explanation will be deleted one week after they have been uploaded, as described on criteria for speedy deletion. If you have any questions please ask them at the Media copyright questions page. Thank you.

BetacommandBot 12:07, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Anarchism in Spain Fascism Snake.jpg[edit]

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Image:Anarchism in Spain Fascism Snake.jpg is being used on this article. I notice the image page specifies that the image is being used under fair use but there is no explanation or rationale as to why its use in this Wikipedia article constitutes fair use. In addition to the boilerplate fair use template, you must also write out on the image description page a specific explanation or rationale for why using this image in each article is consistent with fair use.

Please go to the image description page and edit it to include a fair use rationale. Using one of the templates at Wikipedia:Fair use rationale guideline is an easy way to insure that your image is in compliance with Wikipedia policy, but remember that you must complete the template. Do not simply insert a blank template on an image page.

If there is other fair use media, consider checking that you have specified the fair use rationale on the other images used on this page. Note that any fair use images lacking such an explanation can be deleted one week after being tagged, as described on criteria for speedy deletion. If you have any questions please ask them at the Media copyright questions page. Thank you.

BetacommandBot (talk) 04:16, 12 February 2008 (UTC)

Well, the thing about anti-fascist muralists is, they tend to be shot to death. Does that make sense? Surely someone has a more thorough argument; I'm disinclined to argue with a five year old robot. The onslaught of nitpicking Bots turned me away from Wikipedia in the first place... Tothebarricades (talk) 22:58, 18 November 2013 (UTC)


What's are libertarian schools and libertarian trade unions? And what does "the organization adopted syndicalism on libertarian principles", "Anarchist militias were remarkably libertarian within themselves" and "they would continue in their libertarian ways" mean? Why does libertarian come up so much? Surely libertarian should be replaced by anarchist. (talk) 19:07, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

"Libertarian", meaning libertarian socialism, is used as a synonym for anarchism, though the emphasis is slightly different. Skomorokh 19:13, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
Why call it libertarian or libertarian socialist instead of anarchist? (talk) 19:25, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
As I understand it, during the 1880s it became illegal to use the term "anarchy" "anarchist" or "anarchism" on publications in France. Anarchists replaced the term with "Libertarian" to get around the law. The practice spread from there. Further, "libertarian socialist" was an early term used to distance anarchists from their "authoritarian socialist" counterparts. Libertarian socialism became the term used for a large block of various socialist schools of thought, including Council Communism, and Left Communism, and Anarchism. These differ in certain key forms from Marxism, and other variants of authoritarianism. Given the historical nature of the topic, and its geographic location outside of the US, it is more accurate to use this term interchangeably with "anarchist" in this article. It would perhaps be more confusing to do so for "Anarchism in the United States", but that's another matter all together. Context is key. --Cast (talk) 08:53, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

May Days, etc[edit]

The following has been deleted from the article:

"The revolution was virtually snuffed out towards the end of the civil war, by the communist/Stalinist controlled forces who wanted to ensure that the social model adopted in the Spanish Republic would be of their own choosing whilst proving to the western liberal democracies that the USSR would not sponsor social revolutions unfriendly to the established social order."

While it's not ideal, there doesn't seem to be much in the article at present that shows the extent of how the Stalinists sought to undermine the anarchists, especially the Barcelona May Days.

Lapsed Pacifist (talk) 19:56, 1 January 2009 (UTC)

countryside area occupied by squatters[edit]

The section "The popular Front" there is the text: "Throughout the countryside, almost 5 km^2 of land were taken over by squatters." Is this correct? It is unreferenced and seems like an awfully small amount of rural land to take note of. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:18, 25 November 2012 (UTC)

Poorly written, POV etc[edit]

I just read the section on anarchists in the civil war, and I have to say that it is apparent from within the first paragraph right to the end of that section that this is somebody's undergraduate essay copied+pasted. There is lots of POV (about what is/is not surprising), random speculation (about who may or may not have assassinated whom) and barely any referencing. The writing style is very poor. This is not my subject, so I don't have time to make any more of an intervention than this, but I strongly suggest someone remedy these issues, or it will continue to look like (at least that section, I haven't read any more of the article) has been penned by one paranoid armchair anarchist historian... This section should be really interesting, but instead its a mess - there's no rhyme or reason to the structure and some really dubious content. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:15, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Can you please be more specific in your complaints? Any unsourced claim can and should be flagged (with a citation needed notice). You're not wrong, a lot of this was written by an armchair anarchist undergraduate (or high school student), and he could use to put some more effort into this now that he is in his late twenties. Tothebarricades (talk) 12:40, 18 November 2013 (UTC)
Wikipedia has less credibility every day. Good editors walk away quietly now. Be glad you got as far as you did.AECwriter 09:21, 4 January 2014 (UTC)aecwriter — Preceding unsigned comment added by Aecwriter (talkcontribs)
  1. ^