Anarchist & Radical Book Club discussion

Recommendation Requests > Recommendations anyone?

Comments Showing 1-13 of 13 (13 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Fatemah (new)

Fatemah (fatemahkhalfan) Hey, could anyone recommend me a book on anarchy thats well, worth it? Can honestly say i haven't read one but the idea/ theory of anarchy appels to me in more ways than one, especially with the way the world is going.

Feedback will be much appreciated!

message 2: by Tinea (new)

Tinea (pist) I find the theory books hard to get through too. I've honestly learned the most anarchist theory through zines. There's a few in particular that I got through the Modesto Anarcho distro I remember being fantastic and accessible, but I can't remember the titles right now.

If you want a big book, Direct Action: An Ethnography by David Graeber talks about the US anarchist/activist movement in the US and has a chapter synthesizing what he sees as contemporary anrchist theory in this chapter that someone scanned online. I really enjoyed this book and Graber's writing, because he focuses on anarchism in action, and derives theoretical principles through how they are put into practice. That's a way more approachable and important method, in my opinion. Be warned it's kind of a massive tome and the first 200 pages or so drag a bit tho.

message 3: by Miquixote (last edited Feb 15, 2011 02:16AM) (new)

Miquixote 'On Anarchism', by Noam Chomsky is the most accessible and excellent book on anarchism I have read, although many would probably say 'Anarchism and Other Essays' by Emma Goldman (I haven't read it).

My personal favourite though does not explicity define itself as being about anarchy, but is certainly so: 'Society of the Spectacle' by Guy Debord. To me it is the most profound and applicable to our daily reality (but it is definitely academic and difficult).

People often recommend Daniel Guerin's 'Anarchism: from Theory to Practice' as an introduction. I haven't read it. His 'No Gods, No Masters' is probably too heavy as an introduction, although I am sure it would be much better(I haven't read it either).

There are many other excellent books on anarchism that I could recommend though...I had better stop!

message 4: by Fatemah (new)

Fatemah (fatemahkhalfan) Thanks a lot for all your recommendations, they really do help. Im going to try and look for all your recommendations, even an Anarchist FAQ, Vol.I and hopefully ill get through it bit by bit too, Justin. Seeing as Communism is illegal here, it might be a bit hard but all praise the online bookstores.

Thanks again!

message 5: by Tinea (new)

Tinea (pist) Justin, is the book An Anarchist FAQ the same as the website (

message 6: by Miquixote (new)

Miquixote Millicent wrote: "Justin, is the book An Anarchist FAQ the same as the website ("

yup, it's the same.

message 7: by Francois (last edited Feb 22, 2011 03:15PM) (new)

Francois Tremblay My recommendations:

The Dispossessed: An Ambiguous Utopia
Fragments of an Anarchist Anthropology
Mutual Aid: a factor of evolution
The Lysander Spooner Reader
Homage to Catalonia

These books represent a diverse scope of genres and topics. If you can be more specific in what you're looking for, I might be able to provide more specific titles. In the absence of this, I recommend these as a good general overview of the Anarchist ideal, theory, and practice.

message 8: by Micah (new)

Micah | 9 comments I think there's some great suggestions here; didn't see Malatesta's "Anarchy" or Berkman's "What is Anarchism?" (also known as "The ABCs of Anarchism" I think), both oldies but goodies.

For something more recent, I like Bonanno's "The Anarchist Tension" which you can find at

message 9: by Margaret (new)

Margaret Killjoy | 3 comments My favorite book on anarchism is probably "anarchy in the age of dinosaurs." As for an introduction, taken with a grain of salt, crimethInc's "days of war, nights of love," might still be the best that our generation has offered.

message 10: by Joachim (new)

Joachim | 1 comments Black Flame: The Revolutionary Class Politics of Anarchism and Syndicalism (Counterpower Vol 1)
by Lucien Van Der Walt, Michael E.C. Schmidt

by Rudolf Rocker

Anarcho-syndicalism in the 20th Century
by V. Damier

message 11: by Patrick (new)

Patrick | 5 comments my starting points were:

The ABC's of Anarchism by Alexander Berkman
Anarchism and other Essays by Emma Goldman
Anarchy in Action by Colin Ward

all are a decent length and hit at the core of what anarchism is.

message 12: by Chris (new)

Chris Nelson (junkyardheart) | 3 comments I'd recommend Cindy Milstein's 'Anarchism and Its Aspirations'from AK Press/Institute for Anarchist Studies. It's not a long book and provides both an overview of the history of anarchism as well as a look at what contemporary anarchism looks like.

message 13: by Loren (new)

Loren | 1 comments Reading Jared Diamond's "Collapse" Anthropocentric yes, but my very fav anarchist book is "The Man Who Was Thursday" by G.K. Chesterton

back to top