“We must first of all purify our atmosphere and transform completely the surroundings in which we live, for they corrupt our instincts and our wills, they constrict our hearts and our intelligences”.
Michael Bakunin, Appeal to the Slavs
“In France, as everywhere else, nostalgia for certain moral values from the past, the idealisation of certain pre-capitalist social forms (rural living or cottage industry) and the rejection of industrial/bourgeois civilization were an essential component of anarchist culture”.
Michael Löwy, Rédemption et utopie: le judaïsme libertaire en Europe centrale
“The people had to escape for their lives, some of them losing all their clothes except what they had on their backs. The people were told they could go where they liked, provided they did not encumber the land that was by rights their own. The people were driven away like dogs who deserved no better”.
Betsy Mackay (quoted by John Prebble in The Highland Clearances)
“We have abandoned all which is contrary to our love of community and we would rather die than to return to the previous ways which, enslaved to egotism and property, lead to buying and selling, working for money, practising usury, eating and drinking the sweat of the poor”.
Declaration from rebel town of Münster, 1534
“Because, without some means of exact time keeping, industrial capitalism could never have developed and could not continue to exploit the workers, the clock represents an element of mechanical tyranny in the lives of modern men more potent than any individual exploiter or than any other machine…”
George Woodcock, The Rejection of Politics