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The Anarchist Cookbook

3.42  ·  Rating Details ·  1,592 Ratings  ·  146 Reviews
Perhaps the most notorius How To manual on the market. This is the most asked for book that we know of. Is it any good? Well, it's now in its 29th printing since 1971, has chapters on home preparation of weapons, electronics, drugs, and explosives. Extensively illustrated, 8.5 x 11, 160 pp., softcover.
Paperback, 160 pages
Published November 1st 1971 by Ozark Press, LLC (first published 1971)
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Oct 14, 2007 Brandon rated it it was amazing
This book is getting all sorts of bad reviews. Its got people who don't like the concept of making drugs from bananas and peanuts. But it does have some things that prove useful. most of this book is crap, but some of it has been very useful in wasting a summer day making fireworks and other various experiments.

And don't be dumb enough to try to make drugs from 200 pounds of bananas. If you're dumb enough to buy 200 pounds of bananas, you're probably already on drugs.
Jun 21, 2011 Mike rated it it was amazing
I love this book because of its commentary on America. By that I don't mean to say that the rambling bs of the author is valid or insightful. I don't think the nutmeg or banana trippin is real or warrants a read. I do not believe the bomb making tutorials are the best to be found.

No what I love about this book is how blatantly useless it is, while somehow managing to be so feared and despised. I've heard a lot of people over the years say that ownership of this book is just cause for outrageous
Dec 28, 2014 Alex added it
I learned many valuable things from this book, like the fact that smoking banana peels will not actually get you high, at least not the way Ryan and I did it, but it will give you a headache.

Actually that's all I learned. I dimly remember looking at the pipe bomb bit and thinking wow, that looks dangerous, I shouldn't do that.

I thought it would be fun to grab a copy of this, but a) it turns out that it's $24 which seems like a lot and b) here is a statement from William Powell:
I have recently b
Jul 09, 2008 Stephen rated it liked it
I'm probably already on some government lists thanks to this book, so what's another entry. To hide the book from my parents, I ripped out the pages of 'Children's Stories of the Bible' and glued the AC in its place.
I think I actually tried the nutmeg method of getting stoned when I was 13. It didn't work. A lot of the stuff in this book didn't work.
Still a great read. I can picture a sweaty William Powell trading banana-skin hash to his buddy to do the illustrations. I liked the random quotes
Worst Misnomer candidate here. Though introductory essay is written by someone who claims to be an anarchist, it contains some odd proclamations, such as the claim that Marx in Capital contends that state socialism is ‘feudal reactionary’ (12); this may well be true, though I can’t recall the passage, and no citation is provided. It is nevertheless contrary to the well-known passages from the Critique of the Gotha Programme wherein the famous two-phase revolution is laid out: socialism first, wh ...more
Aug 04, 2007 Chefwood rated it did not like it
Shelves: neverfinished
LAME!!! Could also be titled,"A Big Long List of Crap That You Must Be Stoned to Even Consider Trying in The First Place, Because You Will Probably Die or Cause Yourself Permanant Brain & Bodily Damage".
Kirk Bresniker
Jun 25, 2011 Kirk Bresniker rated it did not like it
So my brother gave me this as a joke a long time ago and it sat in a drawer and I didn't think much of it. I can remember when we were in high school that this was something that people passed around or talked about. Somehow the topic of the book came up with my son who is now in eighth grade, so I got it out and looked through it with him. From the forward on "Anarchism Today" through the sections on telephone sabotage, it is an anachronism, and if it is possible, verging on quaint. The instruc ...more
Jan 09, 2015 Zany rated it really liked it
In my personal library. Well. This was... interesting. Also slightly disappointing. I'd been hearing about this book in hushed conversations for as long as I can recall, and by its very controversial nature I'd determined one day to read it. I thought it was relatively modern. I was saddened to learn it was written in the late 60s. Result: much of the technological tomfoolery is no longer valid. Still, there are some cool things: recipes for LSD; how to hotwire a pre-1964 Chevy; how to build sil ...more
Will Hassett
Dec 08, 2008 Will Hassett rated it it was amazing
I remember my older brother telling me how hard it was to find this book. He said it wasn't any good at all but it was more for show. He was definately right. This book is more likely to get you killed then it is to get you high or make a bomb. I don't think any of the so called 'anarchist recipes' work in this book. Sadly I tried the 'bananadine'. Doesn't work at all. Just tastes bad. But like my brother said this book is just for show. It's pretty entertaining and funny to read but if your dum ...more
Sep 08, 2007 Wes rated it liked it
Feb 29, 2008 Jesse rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone. Try some of these recipes to win yourself a Darwin award.
I recently found this in an old keepsake box and thought it was funny enough that I decided to use it for my profile pic. Don't worry, I'm not going to blow you up. In fact, I couldn't, if I was only using information from this outdated, wildly inaccurate book.
As a kid, I ordered this from Barricade Books, which also offered Vietnam-era military training manuals and the like. My friends and I knew immediately from the hilariously crude illustrations and rambling diatribes that the information w
Oct 09, 2007 Tien rated it did not like it
It was what it was. Now, it is a book that would-be "anarchists" or other "socially progressive" types and/or teenagers and/or certain lefty liberals have on their bookshelf, not because they'd actually sit down and cook up any of these things, but because it makes them look counter-culture. I hate these people.

There are better how-to guides on the internets. If only that was fashionable.
Feb 27, 2008 Paul rated it it was ok
Too many recipes in this book are dangerous and/or have the possibility of failure. The author at the time was pretty much uninformed and untrained in the usage of most of these tips and tricks.
For a better handbook on the subject check out "Anarchist Cookbook 2000" or "New and Improved Anarchist Cookbook," both of which are available in PDF format online and are in some ways better (more informed, more recent) and yet more dangerous.
Hamid Reza
Mar 11, 2015 Hamid Reza rated it did not like it
Teaching self proclaimed anarchists how to sabotage society, injure and kill others and wreak havoc. What can possibly go wrong?!
Dec 25, 2016 Ramon rated it liked it
Dec 09, 2016 Robin rated it it was ok
Published in 1971 and written by then 19-year old William Powell, The Anarchist Cookbook is now a flashback into history. The Vietnam War was in full swing and Powell, like many young people, considered the war an unethical invasion, since there was no threat to America. They feared the draft and did not want to kill civilians for political and corporate gain, compromising their own sanity and/or bodily parts. At the time, this book was a voice for a loosely affiliated group of “counter-culture” ...more
Amani Bryant
Jan 10, 2017 Amani Bryant marked it as to-read
This is one of the few on ALA's Top 100 Most Challenged from the 1990's that seems near impossible to find a copy of. May end up sitting unread on this list for a very long time. Not keen on the idea of getting myself added to no-fly or other watch lists chasing it down. Things are scary enough right now. And yes. I am well aware of the irony of such a sentiment when censorship is such a big deal to me.
Todd N
Apr 26, 2013 Todd N rated it it was ok
Shelves: ipad
I've always been curious about this book, so when I heard it mentioned on Rachel Maddow's show a few days ago I searched for it on Google. The PDF was one of the first hits. (No way I was going to pay the publisher any money, especially after the author has disavowed the book and asked that it not be published any more.)

This book works best as an artifact of the 70's, in particular the bummery part of the 70's. There is a lot of talk about revolution, freeing one's mind, and standing up to the m
Sep 21, 2016 brook rated it liked it
As a kid, I thought that this book was going to allow me to subvert the world, break the rules, etc, etc.

Now, it's incredibly outdated (there's some phone phreaking stuff in there that hasn't worked in 15 years anywhere in the US, for example), but is entertaining as a walk down memory lane.

The Cookbook mentions other publications, some created and maintained by US Armed Forces, that are still available for perusal today that may be more informative (at least, I assume they are, but with the c
Andrew Giles
Not what I expected. Good read and interesting, but overall a little let down.
Kym Andrew Robinson
Sep 23, 2014 Kym Andrew Robinson rated it liked it
I excitedly read this book as a teenager. It was a book that had an air of mystery surrounding it and a lot of alleged 'powers'. Much of the information was at hand for most people even when I had read this book. This was before the Internets universal existence and powers.Despite the availability of most of the information in this book, it still retained an edge of myth about it.

Having said all of that when this book was written its existence was both celebrated as an expression of 'extreme' fr
Richard Kelly
This book has a terrible reputation for inspiring bad behavior. Now it isn't the books fault, it doesn't tell you to do anything, but we are used to be being sheltered from the dangerous.

The book itself is hard to review as it doesn't have any literary merit. Instead it is a collection of instructions to make, break, or alter different things.

Recalling the book now, it just seemed like a collection of random things you might hear rumors of in a school yard or maybe some modern myths if you will
Nathan P
May 17, 2013 Nathan P rated it liked it
The Anarchist Cookbook
By: William Powell

The Anarchist Cookbook is all about creating anarchy in society. Should the government became too oppressive, this book teaches you how to fight against them in a Guerrilla manner. It explains to the reader how to manufacture drugs in your home. It also teaches you methods of creating explosives and poisonous gasses. Along with multiple weapons and other methods of killing people.

I did find this book amusing to read. However I question how reliable the inf
Luke O'Brien
Sep 11, 2016 Luke O'Brien rated it really liked it
It's dated but many of the methods described for example say, making napalm, still work perfectly.
David Scott
Jun 26, 2010 David Scott rated it did not like it
There was a lot of hype surrounding this book in the groups that I was associated with in school. It wasn't until many years later that I actually had the privilege(?) of being able to thumb through the pages. I should be thankful that no one actually acquired this among my friends, or a few of us may have lost fingers, or worse...smoked banana peels.

This book is a crock and makes a dumb farce of the raw spirit of rebellion. Totally ignorant, uninformed and downright dangerous. If you are dumb e
Jeremy Johnson
Jan 12, 2009 Jeremy Johnson rated it did not like it
This was one of those legendary books that was talked about on the playground in whispers. When I finally got my hands on one (found in an abandoned trailer) it was a thoroughly amaturish attempt at making a document without actually knowing anything. Now that we're in the era of the internet, you could easily surpass by a thousand-fold any information on any subject in this book in seconds. And the author is incredibly drug-centered and completely full of shit, if any freedom fighters had used ...more
Feb 24, 2011 Billy rated it did not like it
This book should be retitled. " A Guide On How To Induce Brain Damage and Maim/Kill Yourself For Dummies". Pretty worthless book overall. Diagrams look like they were drawn by an elementary school kid, with poor drawing skills. It also contains many, MANY nuggets of "wisdom", such as the fact that giving someone an "ear clap" hard enough will not only cause their ears to bleed, but will also instantly KILL them, due to air pressure causing bleeding of the brain. Really? Let me guess. Next your g ...more
Jennifer Worrell
Now here's a ban I understand. But really, when you're trying to narrow down your Christmas wish list to only one or two weapons, it's good to have the pros and cons of things like brass knuckles and Kelly Come-Alongs spelled out for you, saving you a trip to the store. You know how it is, you get in, try stuff on, and when you get them home in regular lighting you realize it doesn't really go with those murderous plans after all, and they have a no-returns policy. It's frustrating. Plus there's ...more
Feb 08, 2009 Jason rated it liked it
The bible for 13-year-old malcontents, originally released in what Hunter Thompson called "this foul year of Our Lord, 1971." An amazing hodgepodge of explosives recipes, paeans to Kropotkin and Ho Chi Minh, and crappy, free-hand drawings of garrotes, grenades, and "pressure-release gate traps." The section on dealing with cops ("stupid," "megalomaniac," "sadist") is hilarious, and the effusions over detonation ("An explosion is more than just a chemical reaction...It can take the shape of hope ...more
Philip Gomez
Sep 25, 2008 Philip Gomez rated it it was ok
The prefatory note on Anarchism Today by P. M. Bergman made this book worth every penny. You can pretty much do without the rest of the book, but this essay is simply awesome, and proves what many (so-called) anarchists and (so-called) Marxists don't want to hear: that Anarchism and Marxism are not mutually exclusive philosophies, and in fact, are one and the same. (Marx and Bakunin are probably rolling in their graves at that, but if they'd put their petty differences aside, they, too, would ha ...more
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good idea, needs some updating. 1 17 Mar 22, 2007 12:27PM  
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American writer mostly known for his publication "The anarchist cookbook" which he denounced since then saying "I want to state categorically that I am not in agreement with the contents of The Anarchist Cookbook and I would be very pleased (and relieved) to see its publication discontinued. I consider it to be a misguided and potentially dangerous publication which should be taken out of print.”

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