Memoirs of a Revolutionist (Dover Books on History, Political and Social Science)

Memoirs of a Revolutionist (Dover Books on History, Political and Social Science)

Peter Kropotkin

Language: English

Pages: 608

ISBN: 0486473163

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Born into a wealthy family of landowners, Prince Peter Alexeivich Kropotkin (1842-1921) served in the court of the Tsar and held prestigious diplomatic posts. But the prince renounced his life of privilege to embrace nonviolent anarchism, a revolutionary alternative to Marxism. A leading theoretician of his day, Kropotkin wrote the basic books in the library of anarchism, prepared countless pamphlets and speeches, and worked tirelessly to subvert the class structure and promote a philosophy of collective action.  
In this autobiography, Kropotkin recounts his early life in the royal court and his military service in Siberia, along with his imprisonment, escape, and European exile. His portraits of nineteenth-century Russian life rival those of the great novelists, ranging from moving examples of the unbridgeable chasm between nobles and serfs to gripping scenes of midnight plots enacted outside the Kremlin’s walls. An eminent geographer and cartographer, Kropotkin also offers fascinating views from his explorations of Siberia. An Introduction and explanatory notes enhance this unabridged edition of a thrilling real-life story of idealism and adventure.

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and more appreciative of the development of wide humanitarian conceptions, he would be surrounded by flocks of pupils, like one of his Greek prototypes. A very animated socialist and anarchist movement was going on at Paris while we stayed there. Louise Michel lectured every night, and aroused the enthusiasm of her audiences, whether they consisted of working men or were made up of middle-class people. Her already great popularity became still greater and spread even amongst the university

and of which we knew all the woodcuts. For a long time I could not imagine a revolution otherwise than in the shape of Death riding on a horse, the red flag on one hand and a scythe in the other, mowing down men right and left. So it was pictured in the ‘Illustration.’ But I now think that M. Poulain’s dislike was limited to the uprising of 1848, for one of his tales about the Revolution of 1789 deeply impressed my mind. The title of prince was used in our house with and without occasion. M.

and in prisons. But under Girardot’s rule these persecutions took on a harsher aspect, and they came, not from the comrades of the same form, but from the first form — the pages de chambre, who were noncommissioned officers, and whom Girardot had placed in a quite exceptional, superior position. His system was to give them carte blanche; to pretend that he did not know even the horrors they were enacting; and to maintain through them a severe discipline. To answer a blow received from a page de

having to take part in the military parade at the riding-school. I was still in bed, when my soldier servant, Ivánoff, dashed in with the tea-tray, exclaiming, ‘Prince, freedom! The manifesto is posted on the Gostínoi Dvor’ (the shops opposite the corps). ’did you see it yourself?’ ‘Yes. People stand round; one reads, the others listen. It is freedom!’ In a couple of minutes I was dressed and out. A comrade was coming in. ‘Kropótkin, freedom!’ he shouted. ‘Here is the manifesto. My uncle

way to the Kara Sea, while the commanders of Government ships, hampered by the responsibilities of the naval service, had never risked doing so. A general interest in Arctic exploration was awakened by these discoveries. In fact, it was the seal-hunters who opened the new era of Arctic enthusiasm which culminated in Nordenskjöld’s circumnavigation of Asia, in the permanent establishment of the north-eastern passage to Siberia, in Peary’s discovery of North Greenland, and in Nansen’s ‘Fram’

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