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January 06 , 2009

Anarchists Never Surrender

Essays, Polemics, and Correspondence on Anarchism, 1908–1938


Providing a complete picture of Victor Serge’s relationship to anarchist action and doctrine, this volume contains writings going back to his teenage years in Brussels, where he became influenced by the doctrine of individualist anarchism. At the heart of the anthology are key articles written soon after his arrival in Paris in 1909, when he became editor of the newspaper l'anarchie. In these articles Serge develops and debates his own radical thoughts, arguing the futility of mass action and embracing “illegalism.” Serge’s involvement with the notorious French group of anarchist armed robbers, the Bonnot Gang, landed Serge in prison for the first time in 1912. The book includes both his prison correspondence with his anarchist comrade Émile Armand and articles written immediately after his release. The book also includes several articles and letters written by Serge after he had left anarchism behind and joined the Russian Bolsheviks in 1919. Here Serge analyzed anarchism and the ways in which he hoped anarchism would leaven the harshness and dictatorial tendencies of Bolshevism. Included here are writings on anarchist theory and history, Bakunin, the Spanish revolution, and the Kronstadt uprising. Anarchists Never Surrender anthologizes Victor Serge’s previously unavailable texts on anarchism and fleshes out the portrait of this brilliant writer and thinker, a man I. F. Stone called one of the “moral figures of our time.”

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