These claims, which formerly were uttered only by the social reformer, begin now to be made by a daily growing minority of those who work in the factory or till the acre; and they so conform with our feelings of justice, that they find support in a daily growing minority amid the privileged classes themselves. Socialism becomes thus the idea of the nineteenth century; and neither coercion nor pseudo-reforms can stop its further growth.

Much hope of improvement was laid, of course, in the extension of political rights to the working classes. But these concessions, unsupported as they were by corresponding changes in the economical relations, proved delusory. They did not materially improve the conditions of the great bulk of the workmen. Therefore, the watchword of Socialism is :

Economical freedom, as the only secure basis for political freedom. And as long as the present wage system, with all its bad consequences, remains unaltered, the Socialist watchword will continue to inspire the workmen. Socialism will continue to grow until it has realized its programme.

Side by side with this great movement of thought in economical matters, a like movement was going on with regard to political rights, political organization, and the functions of government. Government was submitted to the same criticism as Capital. While most of the Radicals saw in universal suffrage and republican institutions the last word of political wisdom, a further step was made by the few. The very functions of government and the State, as also their relations to the individual, were submitted to a sharper and deeper criticism. Representative government having been experimented on a wider field than before, its defects became more and more prominent. It became obvious that these defects are not merely accidental, but inherent to the system itself. Parliament and its executive proved to be unable to attend to all the numberless affairs of the community and to conciliate the varied and often opposite interests of the separate parts of a State. Election proved unable to find out the men who might represent a nation, and manage, otherwise than in a party spirit, the affairs they are compelled to legislate

upon. These defects became so striking that the very principles of the representative system were criticised and their justness doubted. Again, the dangers of a centralized government became still more conspicuous when the Socialists came to the front and asked for a further increase of the powers of government by intrusting it with the management of the immense field covered now by the economical relations between individuals. The question was asked, whether a government, intrusted with the management of industry and trade, would not become a permanent danger for liberty and peace, and whether it even would be able to be a good manager?


The Socialists of the earlier part of this century did not fully realize the immense difficulties of the problem. Convinced as they were of the necessity of economical reforms, most of them took no notice of the need of freedom for the individual; and we have had social reformers ready to submit society to any kind of theocracy, dictatorship, or even Cæsarism, in order to obtain reforms in a Socialist sense. Therefore we saw, this country and also on the Continent, the division of men of advanced opinions into political Radicals and Socialists-the former looking with distrust on the latter, as they saw in them a danger for the political liberties which have been won by the civilized nations after a long series of struggles. And even now, when the Socialists all over Europe are becoming political parties, and profess the democratic faith, there remains among most impartial men a wellfounded fear of the Volksstaat or popular State" being as great a danger for liberty as any form of autocracy, if its government be intrusted with the management of all the social organization, including the production and distribution of wealth.

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The evolution of the last forty years prepared, however, the way for showing the necessity and possibility of a higher form of social organization which might guarantee economical freedom without reducing the individual to the rôle of a slave to the State. The origins of government were carefully studied, and all metaphysical conceptions as to its divine or social contract derivation having been laid aside, it appeared that it is

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among us of a relatively modern origin, and that its powers grew precisely in proportion as the division of society into the privileged and unprivileged classes was growing in the course of ages. Representative government was also reduced to its real value-that of an instrument which has rendered services in the struggle against autocracy, but not an ideal of free political organization. As to the system of philosophy which saw in the State (the Kultur-Staat) a leader to progress, it was more and more shaken as it became evident that progress is the more effective when it is not checked by State interference. It thus became obvious that a further advance in social life does not lie in the direction of a further concentration of power and regulative functions in the hands of a governing body, but in the direction of decentralization, both territorial and functional-in a subdivision of public functions with respect both to their sphere of action and to the character of the functions; it is in the abandonment to the initiative of freely constituted groups of all those functions which are now considered as the functions of govern


to be effective they must be carried on also with regard to the various functions of life within the free community; a merely territorial limitation of the sphere of action of government will not dorepresentative government being as deficient in a city as it is in a nation. Life gave thus a further point in favor of the no-government theory, and a new impulse to anarchist thought.

Anarchists recognize the justice of both the just-mentioned tendencies toward economical and political freedom, and see in them two different manifestations of the very same need of equality which constitutes the very essence of all struggles mentioned by history. Therefore, in common with all Socialists, the anarchist says to the political reformer:

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No substantial reform in the sense of political equality, and no limitation of the powers of government, can be made as long as society is divided into two hostile camps, and the laborer remains, economically speaking, a serf to his employer." But to the Popular State Socialist we say also: You cannot modify the existing conditions of property without deeply modifying at the same time the political organization. You must limit the powers of government and renounce Parliamentary rule. To each new economical phasis of life corresponds a new political phasis. Absolute monarchy-that is, Court-rulecorresponded to the system of serfdom. Representative government corresponds to Capital-rule. Both, however, are class-rule. But in a society where the distinction between capitalist and laborer has disappeared, there is no need of such a government; it would be an anachronism, a nuisance. Free workers would require a free organization, and this cannot have another basis than free agreement and free co-operation, without sacrificing the autonomy of the individual to the all-pervading interference of the State. The no-capitalist system implies the no-government system."

This current of thought found its expression not merely in literature, but also, to a limited extent, in life. The uprise of the Paris Commune, followed by that of the Commune of Cartagena a movement of which the historical bearing seems to have been quite overlooked in this country-opened a new page of history. If we analyze not only this movement in itself, but also the impression it left in the minds and the tendencies which were manifested during the communal revolution, we must recognize in it an indication showing that in the future human agglomerations which are more advanced in their social development will try to start an independent life; and that they will endeavor to convert the more backward parts of a nation by example, instead of imposing their opinions by law and force, or submit- Meaning thus the emancipation of ting themselves to the majority-rule, man from the oppressive powers of capwhich always is a mediocrity-rule. At italist and government as well, the systhe same time the failure of representa- tem of anarchy becomes a synthesis of tive government within the Commune it- the two powerful currents of thought self proved that self-government and which characterize our century. self-administration must be carried on further than in a mere territorial sense;

In arriving at these conclusions anarchy proves to be in accordance with

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the conclusions arrived at by the philosophy of evolution. By bringing to light the plasticity of organization, the philosophy of evolution has shown the admirable adaptivity of organisms to their conditions of life, and the ensuing development of such faculties as render more complete both the adaptations of the aggregates to their surroundings and those of each of the constituent parts of the aggregate to the needs of free cooperation. It familiarized us with the circumstance that throughout organic nature the capacities for life in common are growing in proportion as the integration of organisms into compound aggregates becomes more and more complete; and it enforced thus the opinion already expressed by social moralists as to the perfectibility of human nature. It has shown us that, in the long run of the struggle for existence," the fittest will prove to be those who combine intellectual knowledge with the knowledge necessary for the production of wealth, and not those who are now the richest because they, or their ancestors, have been momentarily the strongest. By showing that the "struggle for existence'' must be conceived, not merely in its restricted sense of a struggle between individuals for the means of subsistence, but in its wider sense of adaptation of all individuals of the species to the best conditions for the survival of the species, as well as for the greatest possible sum of life and happiness for each and all, it permitted us to deduce the laws of moral science from the social needs and habits of mankind. It showed us the infinitesimal part played by positive law in moral evolution, and the immense part played by the natural growth of altruistic feelings, which develop as soon as the conditions of life favor their growth. It thus enforced the opinion of social reformers as to the necessity of modifying the conditions of life for improving man, instead of trying to improve human nature by moral teachings while life works in an opposite direction. Finally, by studying human society from the biological point of view, it came to the conclusions arrived at by anarchists from the study of history and present tendencies, as to further progress being in the line of socialization of wealth and integrated labor, combined

with the fullest possible freedom of the individual.

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It is not a mere coincidence that Herbert Spencer, whom we may consider as a pretty fair expounder of the philosophy of evolution, has been brought to conclude, with regard to political organization, that "that form of society toward which we are progressing'' is one in which government will be reduced to the smallest amount possible, and freedom increased to the greatest amount possible."* When he opposes in these words the conclusions of his synthetic philosophy to those of Auguste Comte, he arrives at very nearly the same conclusion as Proudhont and Bakunin.‡ More than that, the very methods of argumentation and the illustrations resorted to by Herbert Spencer (daily supply of food, post-office, and so on) are the same which we find in the writings of the anarchists. The channels of thought were the same, although both were unaware of each other's endeavors.

Again, when Mr. Spencer so powerfully, and even not without a touch of passion, argues (in his Appendix to the third edition of the Data of Ethics) that human societies are marching toward a state when a further identification of altruism with egoism will be made “in the sense that personal gratification will come from the gratification of others;" when he says that we are shown, un

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* Essays, vol. iii. I am fully aware that in the very same Essays, a few pages further, Herbert Spencer destroys the force of the fore "" Not

going statement by the following words: only do I contend," he says, "that the restraining power of the State over individuals and bodies, or classes of individuals, is requisite, but I have contended that it should be exercised much more effectually and carried much further than at present" (p. 145). And although he tries to establish a distinction between the (desirable) negatively regulative and the (undesirable) positively regulative functions of government, we know that no such distinction can be established in political life, and that the former necessarily lead to, and even imply, the latter. But we must distinguish between the system of philosophy and its interpreter. All we can say is that Herbert Spencer does not fully indorse all the conclusions which ought to be drawn from his system of philosophy.

+ Idée générale sur la Révolution au XIX siècle; and Confessions d'un révolutionnaire.

Lettres à un Français sur la crise actuelle; L'Empire knouto-germanique; The State's Idea and Ánarchy (Russian).

deniably, that it is a perfectly possible thing for organisms to become so adjusted to the requirements of their lives, that energy expended for the general welfare may not only be adequate to check energy expended for the individual welfare, but may come to subordinate it so far as to leave individual welfare no greater part than is necessary for maintenance of individual life''-provided the conditions for such relations between the individual and the community be maintained *-he derives from the study of nature the very same conclusions which the forerunners of anarchy, Fourier and Robert Owen, derived from a study of human character. When we see further Mr. Bain so forcibly elaborating the theory of moral habits, and the French philosopher, M. Guyau, publishing his remarkable work on Morality without Obligation or Sanction; when J. S. Mill so sharply criticises representative government, and when he discusses the problem of liberty, although failing to establish its necessary conditions; when Sir John Lubbock prosecutes his admirable studies on animal societies, and Mr. Morgan applies scientific methods of investigation to the philosophy of history-when, in short, every year, by bringing some new arguments to the philosophy of evolution, adds at the same time some new arguments to the theory of anarchy-we must recognize that this last, although differing as to its starting-points, follows the same sound methods of scientific investigation. Our confidence in its conclusions is still more increased. The difference between anarchists and the just-named philosophers may be immense as to the presumed speed of evolution, and as to the conduct which one ought to assume as soon as he has had an insight into the aims toward which society is marching. No attempt, however, has been made scientifically to determine the ratio of evolution, nor have the chief elements of the problem (the state of mind of the masses) been taken into account by the evolutionist philosophers. As to bringing one's action into accordance with his philosophical conceptions, we know that, unhappily,

intellect and will are too often separated by a chasm not to be filled by mere philosophical speculations, however deep and elaborate.

There is, however, between the justnamed philosophers and the anarchists a wide difference on one point of primordial importance. This difference is the stranger as it arises on a point which might be discussed figures in hand, and which constitutes the very basis of all further deductions, as it belongs to what biological sociology would describe as the physiology of nutrition.

There is, in fact, a widely spread fallacy, maintained by Mr. Spencer and many others, as to the causes of the misery which we see round about us. It was affirmed forty years ago, and it is affirmed now by Mr. Spencer and his followers, that misery in civilized society is due to our insufficient production, or rather to the circumstance that population presses upon the means of subsistence.' It would be of no use to inquire into the origin of such a misrepresentation of facts, which might be easily verified. It may have its origin in inherited misconceptions which have nothing to do with the philosophy of evolution. But to be maintained and advocated by philosophers, there must be, in the conceptions of these philosophers, some confusion as to the different aspects of the struggle for existence. Sufficient importance is not given to the difference between the struggle which goes on among organisms which do not co-operate for providing the means of subsistence, and those which do so. In this last case again there must be some confusion between those aggregates whose members find their means of subsistence in the ready produce of the vegetable and animal kingdom, and those whose members artificially grow their means of subsistence and are enabled to increase (to a yet unknown amount) the productivity of each spot of the surface of the globe. Hunters who hunt, each of them for his own sake, and hunters who unite into societies for hunting, stand quite differently with regard to the means of subsistence. But the difference is still greater between the hunters who take their means of subsistence as *Pages 300 to 302. In fact, the whole of they are in nature, and civilized men his chapter ought to be quoted. who grow their food and produce all

requisites for a comfortable life by machinery. In this last case-the stock of potential energy in nature being little short of infinite in comparison with the present population of the globe-the means of availing ourselves of the stock of energy are increased and perfected precisely in proportion to the density of population and to the previously accumulated stock of technical knowledge; so that for human beings who are in possession of scientific knowledge, and cooperate for the artificial production of the means of subsistence and comfort, the law is quite the reverse to that of Malthus. The accumulation of means of subsistence and comfort is going on at a much speedier rate than the increase of population. The only conclusion which we can deduce from the laws of evolution and of multiplication of effects is that the available amount of means of subsistence increases at a rate which increases itself in proportion as population becomes denser-unless it be artificially (and temporarily) checked by some defects of social organization. As to our powers of production (our potential production), they increase at a still speedier rate; in proportion as scientific knowledge grows, the means for spreading it are rendered easier, and inventive genius is stimulated by all previous inventions.

If the fallacy as to the pressure of population on the means of subsistence could be maintained a hundred years ago, it can be maintained no more, since we have witnessed the effects of science on industry, and the enormous increase of our productive powers during the last hundred years. We know, in fact, that while the growth of population of England has been from 16 millions in 1844 to 26 millions in 1883, showing thus an increase of 62 per cent., the growth of national wealth (as testified by schedule A of the Income Tax Act) has increased at a twice speedier rate; it has grown from 221 to 507 millions-that is, by 130 per cent.* And we know that the same increase of wealth has taken place in France, where population remains almost stationary, and that it has gone on at a still speedier rate in the United States, where population

* A. R. Wallace's Bad Times.

is increasing every year by immigra tion.

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But the figures just mentioned, while showing the real increase of production, give only a faint idea of what our production might be under a more reasonable economical organization. We know well that the owners of capital, while trying to produce wares with fewer hands," are also continually endeavoring to limit the production, in order to sell at higher prices. When the benefits of a concern are going down, the owner of the capital limits the production, or totally suspends it, and prefers to engage his capital in foreign loans or shares of Patagonian gold-mines. Just now there are plenty of pitmen in England who ask for nothing better than to be permitted to extract coal and supply with cheap fuel the households where children are shivering before empty chimneys. There are thousands of weavers who ask for nothing better than to weave stuffs in order to replace the Whitechapel rugs with linen. And so in all branches of industry. How can we talk about a want of means of subsistence when 246 blasting furnaces and thousands of factories lie idle in Great Britain alone; and when there are, just now, thousands and thousands of unemployed in London alone; thousands of men who would consider themselves happy if they were permitted to transform (under the guidance of experienced men) the heavy clay of Middlesex into a rich soil, and to cover with rich cornfields and orchards the acres of meadowland which now yield only a few pounds' worth of hay? But they are prevented from doing so by the owners of the land, of the weaving factory, and of the coalmine, because capital finds it more advantageous to supply the Khedive with harems and the Russian Government with strategic railways" and Krupp guns. Of course the maintenance of harems pays it gives ten or fifteen per cent. on the capital, while the extraction of coal does not pay--that is, it brings three or five per cent., -and that is a sufficient reason for limiting the production and permitting would-be economists to indulge in reproaches to the working classes as to their too rapid multiplication !

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Here we have instances of a direct

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