Mikhail Bakunin: The Philosophical Basis of His Anarchism

Mikhail Bakunin: The Philosophical Basis of His Anarchism

Language: English

Pages: 268

ISBN: 1892941848

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

The first English-language philosophical study of Mikhail Bakunin, this book examines the philosophical foundations of Bakunin?

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with outmoded and discredited dogma, unwilling to meet the modern demands of ecological crisis for example, or capitulate entirely to liberal capitalism, Blairite-fashion (and in that sense literally “come to terms with the modern world”), anarchism, in the tradition of Bakuninian naturalism, has sought to progress beyond myopic economism and to develop genuinely revolutionary modern ideas and movements (not least in the shape of social ecology). Philosophically, in any event, the fact that

includes Fichte: that is, he already sides with the objective idealist over the subjective idealists by, at the most fundamental, recognizing the resistance of “mighty . . . natural and spiritual actuality” to its ingestion by the “wretched and powerless” subject. (This distinction between idealisms is, as I have pointed out above, lost on Kelly.) Indeed, Bakunin’s objective idealism (which, qua idealism, remains an anthropocentrism, though it is socialized and, to a limited extent, naturalized)

Usually the way to sidestep < 89 > Mikhail Bakunin this difficulty is to defend oneself in the name of relative scientificity (if only to the extent that one’s opponent is pseudo-scientific while one depends on humble “common sense’). However, in the realm of social science per se, this is a weak defense indeed.) Bakunin, in any event, explicitly refers to the revolutionary program as negative in numerous places. For example: “We are called to destroy and not to build; others [in the

Therefore, she writes: “Thinkers who differed from [Bakunin] on fundamental issues were often pressed into service to help him score a particular point. Thus, although he was to regard Comtean positivism as irreconcilable with anarchist theory, he was taken with a brief enthusiasm for Comte at the end of the 1860s when he was < 93 > Mikhail Bakunin eager to discredit the religious Idealism of Mazzini and his followers” [ibid., p. 175]. Bakunin does (from 1868 in the first issue of Narodnoe

this struggle [between Church and pre-modern “State”] by proclaiming the independence of states. The sovereign=s right was recognized as proceeding immediately from God, without the intervention of the Pope or any other priest, and, thanks to this wholly heavenly origin, it was naturally declared absolute. In this manner the edifice of monarchical despotism was erected on the ruins of Church despotism. The Church, having been the master, became the servant of the State [became, in effect, a

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