Talk:Social anarchism

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Tasks To Do[edit]

  • An examination of the term both before and after Bookchin. --FluteyFlakes88 03:38, 27 December 2005 (UTC)
  • "Response" from proponents of "Lifestyle anarchism" such as Bob Black and Crimethinc. Daykart 16:53, 27 December 2005 (UTC)
I don't think they would consider themselves as such. This point is already elaborated in the article. I don't think that one could find a rational response that goes further than that. --FluteyFlakes88 19:19, 27 December 2005 (UTC)
  • Needless to say, this page needs links to criticism of Bookchin's stupid book. If people are going to use the entry "lifestyle anarchism" to continue narrow-minded, sectarian attacks against anarchists, some fairness is needed here. Chuck0 03:17, 4 June 2006 (UTC)


I've never heard of the use of the phrase "social anarchism" outside of anarcho-capitalists who invented it to help justify their position. Is this wrong, or shouldn't that be put into the article? Aufheben 23:15, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Well, it has been the title of a social anarchist journal since 1981, so its adoption as a self-description has some precedent. It would be good if the article could identify how long the term has been used for, though. VoluntarySlave 04:00, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
Not that I doubt you, but can you please cite that journal? I haven't heard of it before. Aufheben 14:32, 26 February 2007 (UTC)
It's at VoluntarySlave 20:36, 26 February 2007 (UTC)
Social anarchism is a tendency within the bigger anarchist movement. Contemporary social anarchists can be found at projects such as Social Anarchism journal. This entry has been vandalized by a user who has crazy ideas about what anarchism really is. He wants to use Wikipedia to push his POV that anarchism is actually "social anarchism" when most anarchists know that social anarchism is one flavor of anarchism. Chuck0 22:49, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
I assume you're talking about me since it's my last entry that you reverted. I'm well aware that all anarchism is not social anarchism. How can you say I'm pushing a POV that "anarchism is actually social anarchism" when what you reverted was my addition of a sourced statement that pointed out that anarchism also includes individualist anarchism? Of course not all anarchism is social anarchism. Anarchism is a broad category of anarchisms (which includes anarcho-communism, anarcho-syndicalism, etc) and is not the only kind of anarchism. Moreover, you reverted the sourced statement with the claim that it was original research. Let me clue you on in something, Chuck0. If something is sourced, then it's by definition not original research. You need to wake up. Your objections are incoherent.Anarcho-capitalism 02:47, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
Your POV pushing is incoherent and disconnected from reality. My changes to this entry have been vandalized by you again. That's all you do around here: vandalize any changes made by anarchists to anarchism entries. Are you on Jimbo Wales' payroll or what? Social anarchism is a subset of anarchism, but this entry has been written to make it seem like social anarchism is an umbrella for anarcho-communism and other tedencies. Anarchists see social anarchism as being something associated with Murray Bookchin's circle and the folks at Social Anarchism magazine. Chuck0 16:52, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
I can't believe what I'm hearing. Coming from someone who claims they are an expert an anarchism you continually show that you know nothing about it. Social anarchism is indeed "an umbrella for anarcho-communism and other tendencies." What is most astounding is that this is pointed out in the "Anarchist FAQ" that you host on YOUR "Infoshop" website! I quote from that FAQ "Are there different types of social anarchism? Yes. Social anarchism has four major trends -- mutualism, collectivism, communism and syndicalism." [1] Have you even bothered to read the thing? Granted, that FAQ has a lot of bad information in it, but it's correct on that widely known point. Unbelievable. Anarcho-capitalism 17:14, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
(Personal attack removed)? Do you understand that people sometimes use a phrase in a way that more imprecise than how most other people use it? Just because some people use social anarchism as an umbrellla term, does not mean that this is the way that most anarchists see this variety of anarchism. Once again, the ONLY REAOSN WHY THIS MATTERS TO YOU IS BECAUSE IT SERVES YOUR ANARCHO-CAPITALIST POV. You have shown on numerous occasions that you intend to control Anarchism entries on Wikipedia to reflect your own POV. I've challenged you over and over again on this. Nobody has stepped in to reign in your behavior, so I assume that this we will go round and round on this for years. That's too bad. Chuck0 07:31, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Some Wikibot has censored my choice of colorful language. Welcome to the kinder, gentler fascism of Wikipedia. Chuck0 08:06, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Chuck0, by your latest edits you indicate that you think Bookchin uses the term "social anarchism" to refer to a particular type of anarchism instead of an umbrella term. But, you're wrong again. Bookchin also uses it to include anarcho-communism, syndicalism, etc. Try reading his essay "Social or Lifestyle Anarchism." [2] Anarcho-capitalism 18:05, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
That is included in my compromise version. There are two sections which explain the different uses of the phrase social anarchism. My compromise edit reflects that some anarchists, such as Bookchin, use the term more broadly, while many others use the term to describe a narrower tendency within contemporary anarchism. Chuck0 18:42, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

Title change[edit]

The more common term is "socialist anarchism." I think the name of the article should be changed. Operation Spooner 07:29, 28 July 2007 (UTC)

In anarchist usage, "socialist anarchism" most often includes socialist forms of individualist anarchism (e.g. Spooner's), and "social anarchism" does not. Social anarchism is a subset of socialist anarchism. Jacob Haller 09:15, 28 July 2007 (UTC)
Individualist anarchism is not socialism. Spooner a socialist? Nonsense. Operation Spooner 04:18, 29 July 2007 (UTC)
He doesn't seem to use the word, but associated with others who did, and made what are at least radically left-libertarian criticisms of the existing economic arrangements. See also [3]. Jacob Haller 08:13, 29 July 2007 (UTC)
A number of the individualist anarchists (e.g. Tucker) called themselves socialists; Spooner was a member of the First International, a socialist organization. Furthermore, the page you cite from the Adams book doesn't say that "social anarchism" and "socialist anarchism" are synonyms; indeed, it uses the phrase "social anarchism" only once on that page, and seems to be contrasting it to socialist anarchism (green anarchism is described as a variant of social anarchism, but is contrasted to socialist anarchism). That book doesn't appear to support your contention that "socialist anarchism" and "social anarchism" are synonyms.VoluntarySlave 21:49, 29 July 2007 (UTC)
Sure Tucker called himself a socialist but he's not a socialist. I don't know what it meant back in the 1800's but today it means social ownership as opposed to individual ownership. I'd love to see a definition of socialism that would include the philosophy of Tucker as being socialism. It would have to be extreme minority definition to stretch the meaning of the term to fit him in. Operation Spooner 05:22, 30 July 2007 (UTC)
It didn't mean social ownership then and it doesn't mean social ownership now. At least within the anarchist movement individualist and mutualist traditions have always been considered socialist. Jacob Haller 09:40, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

The more common term is not "socialist anarchism". Searching for "socialist anarchism" on google only brings up one Mises article on the first page with the explicit phrase "socialist anarchism", and Mises is a fringe view. "Social anarchism" however, is much more explicitly used.

"Collectivist anarchism" is a subset of social anarchism, see Collectivist anarchism.

Also, the source you cite is not a significant enough source for its view to be cited in the introduction. ( Sales Rank: 359,064 in Books [4] -- infinity0 18:39, 28 July 2007 (UTC)

I don't think sales figures are relevant. Operation Spooner 04:18, 29 July 2007 (UTC)

The problem is that "collectivist anarchism" has a much more specific meaning, and "socialist anarchism" has a much less specific meaning, than "social anarchism," even if some outsiders use them interchangibly. (I don't consider myself a "social anarchist," but I can see how people use the term.) Jacob Haller 08:13, 29 July 2007 (UTC)

People have various terms for the same thing. Whether it's "social anarchism," "socialist anarchism," or "collectivist anarchism," what all these have in common is advocacy of common ownership as opposed to individual ownership. Operation Spooner 05:24, 30 July 2007 (UTC)
They aren't the same thing. "Socialist anarchism" includes Tucker's "anarchistic socialism," Tandy's "voluntary socialism," etc. as well most forms of social anarchism. "Social anarchism" includes collectivist anarchism (which generally involves money) and communist anarchism (which generally doesn't) among other forms. Jacob Haller 09:40, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

OS, your sources represent minority view. The majority view is that anarchism is socialist, and that both individual and social anarchism are "socialist anarchism". -- infinity0 21:48, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

Good to see the POV removed. That was added by that anarcho-capitalist who has since been banned by Wikipedia. This entry is still inaccurate, because it reflects the views of people who are unfamiliar with the subject matter. This entry should focus on the contemporary usage of the term "social anarchism," which is a small movement within anarchism, notably centered around Social Anarchism magazine. It's true that people use the phrase loosely to distinguish between individualists and other anarchists, but an encyclopedia entry shouldn't focus on a colloquial use of a term. There is an actual social anarchism movement. Chuck0 21:54, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

Inaccurate Recent Additions[edit]

Somebody has been recently adding new sections to this entry which are at odds with the actual understanding of "social anarchism" as a political tendency. People are adding sections about other tendencies which don't belong under this entry. Social anarchism is a subset of anarchism, at the same level of anarcho-syndicalism and so on. Putting anarcho-syndicalism under this entry basically constitutes either original research or an attempt to use Wikipedia for sectarianism. These new sections need to be taken out. Chuck0 (talk) 17:41, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

Social anarchism, Libertarian socialism, and Left Anarchism are (NOT) all the same thing[edit]

The articles should be merged. Jadabocho (talk) 17:21, 18 February 2009 (UTC)

Obviously Agorism, anarcho-capitalism, free-market anarchism should be merged. But no, libertarian socialism is based on individualism first and formost, in a working class context, unlike other variations of socialism which are based on morality or altruism, and tend to be unrealistic. Also there is no "left anarchism". The correct term is "left libertarian" or "progressive libertarian", regardless of the right's attempts to hijack those terms and make them mean, as usual, "capitalism". Radical Mallard 15 March 2009, 1:14 PM EST


The lede lists something like six terms, then parenthetically restates some of them to equate them, then says that these terms are an umbrella term. —SlamDiego←T 10:48, 24 February 2009 (UTC)

Call for Deletion // Definition of Libertarian socialism[edit]

This section was created and emphasized by rightists who wanted to make it seem like "Social Anarchism" was some big, common used term, in order to make terms like "anarcho capitalism" or the idea of individualism being capitalism-oriented (ignoring all the individualists who have opposed capitalism). Users such as "Anarcho-Capitalist" and "Operation Spooner", who helped create this situation on Wikipedia have been identified as trolls and vandals who had their accounts suspended. I think there is a very good argument that this section be removed, since the term is bearly ever used. There are many journals and small projects that are excluded from wikipedia. The same goes for the section on "Agorism" which was always just the project of one man (SEK3). The term "Social anarchism" is primarily used by Bookchin and the staff that worked with him, and not by anarchists in any real sense. It is also NOT synonymous with "libertarian socialism" or "left libertarian" or the anti-market rule version of "progressive libertarian". Libertarian socialism's basis is that socialism comes directly from individualist ideas that are oriented in favor of working class people, as opposed to bosses and landlords. The term "social anarchism" just makes anarchism out to be yet another state socialist idea, and in that case, why even bother? The early anarchists and syndicalists were in it for themselves. The early cowboys and pirates were in it for themselves. That they cooperated or believed in socialistic ideas at some times only emphasizes the difference between personal inclinations (individualism, libertarian) and economic ideas (like socialism). Individualism is not the opposite of socialism, and libertarian socialism is not the same as some form of anarchism that has had a false dichotomy created of it by the right to make it sound like just another left wing authoritarian gimmick. It's not. It's the real deal. It's a version of socialism that is based on freedom, liberty, and grass roots/direct democracy.. not on morality or forcing people to do as you say because you and only you think it is right. --Radical Mallard March 15, 2009; 1:10 PM EST

I think you're mistaken; the term derives its online prominence at least from its embrace by the editorial collective of An Anarchist FAQ. It obviously has troublesome overlaps with libertarian socialism and left anarchism, but is certainly a notable affiliation. The fact that Wikipedia has articles on various anarchist positions does not mean that it is endorsing the idea that anarchism may correctly be divided in such a manner. Regards, Skomorokh 22:16, 15 March 2009 (UTC)
I know you're mistaken; the term has was rejected by the anarchist faq collective, it was only used by bryan caplan in his own bogus version of the faq, and was used as an attack on anarchists and a pejorative term. the term "socialist anarchism" is NOT used by anarchists, and only has been used by people who do not believe in it and who have attacked it. Bookchin's term "social anarchism" was only used by him and was rejected by both green anarchists and syndicalists, as well as anarcho-communists whom he generally attacked or opposed because he believed in post scarcity anarchism and municipal libertarianism. --Radical Mallard June 23, 2009, 8:57 AM EST
Do not remove referenced information simply because you do not happen to like or agree with what it says. That is very bad form. ---RepublicanJacobiteThe'FortyFive' 14:39, 23 June 2009 (UTC)
It is not bad form to remove referenced information, otherwise it would be impossible to ever edit anything on Wikipedia. References used in weasel-worded entries can give a misleading impression. It is a fact that the terms "socialist anarchism" and "left anarchism" are not used by anarchists, but actually are used by pro-capitalist and anti work/anti civilization detractors of anarchism in a pejorative sense. you can easily see this by searching anarchist tests online. The term "socialist anarchism" was used by Murray Bookchin, but it died when he did. Anarchists simply don't use these terms, yet capitalists who have attacked them do. Ulrike Heider may have used one of the terms in her book, but she was not an anarchist and was criticized for her clumsy journalism and innacuracies, even in the entry mentioning her here on wikipedia.--Radical Mallard June 23, 2009, 5:01 PM EST

"Rational secularism" and "religious anarchists"[edit]

The following content has been repeatedly deleted by an anonymous user who calls it an "unnecessary addition to the article." So, I bring this here for discussion.

However, religious anarchists and those on the Religious Left in general would object to identifying the left with "rational secularism" as there are and have been many powerful left-wing religious movements such as Liberation theology and the Civil rights movement. Social anarchism aims for "free association of people living together and cooperating in free communities."

I have no problem with this material, per se, but I do have a problem with the removal of referenced information without a good explanation. This anonymous user has not provided such an explanation. The material has been in the article for at least 6 months without any dissent, so I am at a loss to see what the problem is. I welcome the thoughts of other editors. ---RepublicanJacobiteThe'FortyFive' 01:10, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

I dont see anything wrong exactly with the text what was removed /deleted recently. The text seems to work in conjunction with what is written prior to it and provides a balance to the two perspectives. That said what is fundamentally wrong with the text I dont know. Im not an expert on Social Anarchism. I would be interested in hearing why it should be removed, prior to removing this. thanks Ottawa4ever (talk) 02:11, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
It kind of looks like original research, to me. We shouldn't be in the business of advancing arguments in the editorial voice of Wikipedia. If specific religious anarchists or leftists have actually criticized social anarchism on these grounds, we could include that in the article with appropriate sources.VoluntarySlave (talk) 06:23, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
perhaps a citation needed tag would be appropriate? and a bit of lee way time for the contributor of that fact (seems to be from some time ago though) to provide this? Ottawa4ever (talk) 15:52, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Page move[edit]

I have just reverted a page move by Nihilo 01 which was made arbitrarily and without discussion. Such an action is very bad form. Please discuss before doing so again. ---RepublicanJacobiteThe'FortyFive' 16:00, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

I have now reverted this page move again. He claims to have made his reasons known, though I fail to see any justification for this unilateral action on his part. Any such move should be discussed first. ---RepublicanJacobiteThe'FortyFive' 04:40, 8 July 2009 (UTC)
I explained it yesterday in this "redirected" discussion:
Based in refferences, I put to the most identificable term ("socialist anarchism", not "collectivist anarchism" to don´t confuse with bakuninist current). "Social anarchism" is a term from 1995, and in origin it was used for the cultural dicotomy "social" (activist and rationalist) vs "lifestyle" (subcultural and posmodern) anarchists. Instead, older and schoolar sources used socialist anarchism from a long time before for de philosophical/economical/political dicotomy individualist-collectivist anarchism (that is the mean of the article).--Nihilo 01 (talk) 19:33, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
Another point, there aren´t references of schoolar or extended use of "social anarchism" (more a cultural than a political term) in the sense of the article (more than "socialist" is used in a political way). I believe is not a polemical issue, only a little fix in terms. Have a good day!--Nihilo 01 (talk) 19:53, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

I am not in agreement with the move to socialist anarchism; that term is primarily used in ("right-wing") libertarian circles and is redundant for the majority of anarchists (excluding the post-leftists and other post-classical school) for whom anarchism is inherently socialist. Another significant problem is that "social anarchism" is used as an umbrella term to distinguish the collectivist (but not, as Nihilo points out, necessarily Bakuninist) tendency within anarchism from the individualist. Contrasting "socialist" with "individualist" anarchism would be problematic and anachronistic, considering that many leading individualist anarchists were outspoken socialists. In any case, future move proposals should use the WP:RM mechanism, as they are likely to prove controversial. Regards,  Skomorokh  12:17, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

Are you sure is a name used only from "right-wing"?: Ostergaard, Geoffrey. "Anarchism". The Blackwell Dictionary of Modern Social Thought. Blackwell Publishing. p. 14. / Noam Chomsky, Carlos Peregrín Otero. Language and Politics. AK Press, 2004, p. 739. And from the same article "social anarchism" couldn't be a classical term because comes from a Bookchin circle (since 1995).

I agree that some individualist were "socialist", but not in the general sense of the word "socialism"... but say "social" could be also contradictory because a political doctrine is social because is about political life, organization, etc. Any way, we aren't discussing if one term is not "logical" but it conventional or classical use (remembering that Wikipedia articles aren't original sources).

Some samples from political publications:

--Nihilo 01 (talk) 17:14, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

i dont agree with the merging of the article with "socialist anarchism". all anarchism is anticapitalist and so socialist. this includes individualist anarchism which adheres in some parts to mutualism. just because theres a few american excentrics who call themselves "anarcho"-capitalists it doesnt mean we have to forget history and current reality.--Eduen (talk) 01:13, 8 November 2009 (UTC)

Anarchist Communism not part of Anarchism!?[edit]

"The status of anarchist communism within anarchism is disputed, because most individualist anarchists consider communitarianism incompatible with political freedom."

I have a problem with this sentence... If "communitarianism" is incompatible with anarchism, then let's just write off 90% of anarchist history and literature, as virtually every real life examples of large-scale or small-scale anarchist societies have been communitarian, mostly communist in fact... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:42, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

"Where individualist forms of anarchism emphasize personal autonomy and the rational nature of human beings, social anarchism sees "individual freedom as conceptually connected with social equality and emphasize community and mutual aid."[6] Unlike individualist anarchism, which stresses the importance of private property or possession, socialist anarchism rejects private property, seeing it as a source of social inequality."

That's also problematic. I'm fairly sure the individualist anarchists like Proudhon did not exactly stress "the importance of private property".... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:50, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

And one more thing: "Where individualist forms of anarchism emphasize personal autonomy and the rational nature of human beings" -- As if social anarchism did not emphasize personal autonomy and the rational nature of human beings! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:55, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

Merge from Socialist anarchism[edit]

Though there is some debate about whether "social anarchism" or "socialist anarchism" is the best term to use for the non-individualist branches of anarchism, I don't see any justification for their being separate articles under the two titles, particularly when Socialist anarchism consists of little more than the intro to this article. Therefore, I propose we merge any information that is in Socialist anarchism and not in this article, to this article, and redirect Socialist anarchism to this article. If people then want to debate renaming this article to "Socialist anarchism," we can have that debate once we have one consolidated article.VoluntarySlave (talk) 23:52, 11 November 2009 (UTC)

socialist anarchism is all anarchism incluiding individualist currents (the minoritarian ones, are also anticapitalist). this is why talking about socialist anarchism its like saying liberal liberalism, communist communism. i mostly agree with the solution of voluntary slave.--Eduen (talk) 01:57, 20 November 2009 (UTC)

Orphaned references in Social anarchism[edit]

I check pages listed in Category:Pages with incorrect ref formatting to try to fix reference errors. One of the things I do is look for content for orphaned references in wikilinked articles. I have found content for some of Social anarchism's orphans, the problem is that I found more than one version. I can't determine which (if any) is correct for this article, so I am asking for a sentient editor to look it over and copy the correct ref content into this article.

Reference named "Graham-2005":

I apologize if any of the above are effectively identical; I am just a simple computer program, so I can't determine whether minor differences are significant or not. AnomieBOT 19:43, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

"sees individual freedom as being dependent upon mutual aid"[edit]

-- is it perhaps more accurate to suggest that a qualifying principe (relating specifically to both socialist organization and action as well as the existence non/existence of government) for 'social anarchist' philosophy is the belief that the legitimacy of the laws and rules that govern society are derived from the collective action of social groups, and that many social anarchists see government as lacking "objective" or "fundamental" integrity, in the extent to which it claims a social and political position distinct from other organizations (???)

this may be related to the idea-- that "individual freedom" is somehow the result of collective action which allows for the limitation of government, but I do not belief that it is central to social anarchist philosophy.

-MEO — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:45, 6 February 2013 (UTC)