The writings of Renzo Novatore are an emotional cavalcade of egoism, nihilism, and hatred for democratic mediocrity. To life!
Renzo Novatore is the pen-name of Abele Rizieri Ferrari who was born in Arcola, Italy (a village of La Spezia) on May 12, 1890 to a poor peasant family. Unwilling to adapt to scholastic discipline, he only attended a few months of the first grade of grammar school and then left school forever. Though his father forced him to work on the farm, his strong will and thirst for knowledge led him to become a self-taught poet and philosopher. Exploring these matters outside the limits imposed by the educational system, as a youth he read Stirner, Nietzsche, Wilde, Ibsen, Baudelaire, Schopenauer, and many others with a critical mind.
Renzo died on November 22 (1922), at the hands of the cops.
We are very excited to present this collection of all of the known writings of Renzo Novatore, newly translated by Wolfi Landstreicher. It contains the fiery polemics, poetry, and willful play that readers of “Toward the Creative Nothing” are already familiar with.
Paper, $13.00, 6.5″x8″, 300 pages
Introductions to anarchist ideas, up till now, have suffered from being one-dimensional, too lengthy, or too sectarian. The history, practice, and philosophy of anarchy has suffered for this lack. We haven’t encouraged new generations to approach our ideas other than on mostly sectarian terms.
Anarchy 101 is an edited crowd-sourced introduction to anarchist ideas. The content comes from the website http://anarchy101.org and represents the best responses from dozens of contributors to hundreds of questions about the Beautiful Idea: this thing called anarchy.
Paper, $8.00, 4.5″x6″, 330 pages
The autobiography of Enrico Arrigoni: an Italian anarchist who lived through the Russian Revolution, and was an anarchist war correspondent during the Spanish Revolution, seeing first hand and reporting on the iniquities of the communists as well as the fascists during that war.
This autobiography was originally published by Arrigoni and the Libertarian Book Club (which he helped start, in New York, and which still continues to this day), and went out of print and has been hard to find. This is an updated version that we are excited to present to anarchist readers who are interested in history, of who just like an exciting life story well told. Arrigoni went by many names (most commonly Frank Brand) in his illegal travels around the world, and escaped from many harrowing situations, including being held in one of the most brutal jails in Spain during the civil war there (his release was effected only through the personal efforts of some people including Emma Goldman).
The book is in two main sections, the first about his life and travels and adventures, the second about Spain – being reprints of his articles sent to the u.s. from many of the fronts of the war.
Arrigoni’s character comes through every page, with humility, humor, a love of life, and a dedication to egoism, a kind of anarchy that was less popular in his day than it is even today.
Paper, $12.00, 5.5″x8″, 330 pages
Through collections of essays, communiqués, narratives, images, and interviews, this anthology hopes to account for what Bash Back! was and what happened to it. We have included a number of actions, theories, and other essays that were not explicitly or implicitly related to Bash Back! as a name. In this context, if we do not recognize the actions of related tendencies and publications, then we fail to tell the complete history of Bash Back! as a network and as a tendency.
The term queer in this book is used both loosely and inclusively. We view queer as the blurring of sexual and gender identities. Queer is the refusal of fixed identities. It is a war on all identity. In line with the Bash Back! tendency, for the uses of this anthology queer is trans because the gender binary is inherently oppressive. More often than not, our use of the term queer is interchangeable with our use of trans, though that is not necessarily true of the way in which trans-whatever is used. We acknowledge that society ensures Queer is an oppressed identity. Anti-Queer oppression is the systematic violence encountered by people who fall outside of traditional sexual or gender categories. This terminology might be confusing, but it is likely that the content within this anthology will clear the air. Admittedly, it might create more confusion among our straight counterparts. With revolution complete and the black flag burned, the category of queer must too be destroyed.
Bash Back! was not just a group or organization, but a militant tendency on the part of queer individuals. While Bash Back! was occasionally public and campy, bashing back was more of an everyday evolutionary occurrence than any sort of activist entity. Most of what can be attributed to the Bash Back! period never made it onto the internet or into newspapers. Bashing back meant bar fights, outrunning lynch mobs, glamdalization, attacking the homes of heterosexist murderers, outright chaos, alleged lootings, theory discussions, self-defense tips, social gatherings, beat downs, the acquisition of large quantities of pepper spray, and attempts at sexual liberation. It was a temporary counter culture amongst friend groups and peers that called for nothing short of direct confrontation with the (mostly) straight, (mostly) white and always normative society: the ultimate queer propaganda by queer deed.
This is the second of our pocketbook series (Species Being is the first) that highlights new (and some old) translations from the French. This is also the second version of this book.
The texts you are about to read have been collected here in order to tell a story for those of us living in this moment. It is not a story of a new politics nor of a single authorial group, but rather of a position, a position that has spread beyond its origins, and which is being elaborated here and there, there where we dream it most violently, here where we feel ourselves so deperately alone.
It is our intention that, read together, they will coalesce for you with ease and clarity.
-From the Introduction
What citizens are abandoned to in the guise of “existence” is no longer anything but a life or death effort to make themselves compatible with Empire. But for the others, for us, each gesture, each desire, each affect encounters in some way the necessity of annihilating Empre and its citizens.
On this criminal path, we take our time. What we are talking about here is nothing less than the constitution of war machines.
Paper, $10.00, 4.5″x6.5″, 171 pages
Table of Contents
- Introduction to the Second Edition
- And the War has Only Just Begun
- Preliminary Materials for a Theory of the Jeune-Fille
- Ready-Made Artist and Human Strike: A Few Clarifications
- A Fine Hell
- Building a Permanent Movement
- “A critical metaphysics could be born as a science of apparatuses”
- How is it to Be Done?
This book tells the story of the most neglected tendency in anarchist thought; egoism. The story of anarchism is usually told as a story of great bearded men who had beautiful ideas and a series of beautiful failures, culminating in the most beautiful failure of them all in the Spanish Civil War. A noble history of failed ideas and practice.
Egoism, and individualist anarchism, suffers a different kind of fate. It is not a great history and glorious failure but an obscure series of stories of winning. Victory defined by the only terms that matter, those who lived life to their fullest and whose struggle against the existing order defined them. This struggle was not one of abstractions, of Big Ideas, but of people attempting to claim an authentic stake in their own life.
Inspired by the writings of Stirner’s “The Ego and His Own” the assertion these people make it not of the composition of a better world (for everyone) but of how the machinations of society, especially one of abstractions and Big Ideas, have shaped the individual members of that society. How everything that we know and believe has been shaped by structure and intent into a conformed, denatured shadow of what we could be.
Individualists anarchists have always argued that anarchism should not be a version of heaven on earth but a “plurality of possibilities”. This has relegated their activity to the actions that people make in their lives rather than participating in political bodies and formations that shape, and participate in, society. Egoists have gone to war with this world, robbed banks, practiced free love, and won everything except those things worth nothing: history, politics, & acceptance by society.
People like you have been denounced as Â“enemies of societyÂ”. No doubt you would indignantly deny being such and claim that you are trying to save society from the vampire of the State. You delude yourselves. Insofar as Â“societyÂ” means an organized collectivity having one basic norm of behavior that must be accepted by all (and that includes your libertarian communist utopia) and insofar as the norm is a product of the average, the crowd, the mediocre, then anarchists are always enemies of society. There is no reason to suppose that the interests of the free individual and the interests of the social machine will ever harmonize, nor is it desirable that they should. Permanent conflict between the two is the only perspective that makes any sense to me. But I expect that you will not see this, that you will continue to hope that if you repeat Â“the free society is possibleÂ” enough times then it will become so.
Paper, $20.00, 5.5″x8.5″, 400 pages
Corrected Table of Contents
Preamble: First Blood vii
1. Rejecting the Stamp of Group Approval: first wave individualists in the US and Europe
James L. Walker: A Unique One 2
What is Justice? by James L. Walker 3
On Rights, by James L. Walker 6
Stirner on Justice, by Tak Kak 7
Selfhood Terminates Blind Man?s Bluff, by Tak Kak 11
Egoism in Sexual Relations, by Tak Kak 13
Egoism, by John Beverley Robinson 14
Biographical note: John Beverley Robinson 17
The Land of the Altruists: a parable for the infant class, by John Beverly Robinson 18
Posterity: the New Superstition, by Benjamin De Casseres 20
Zo d’Axa’s Heresy 24
Individualism, by Pierre Chardon 31
Biographical note: Pierre Chardon 33
What do the Individualists Want? by The “Reveil De L’Eschlave Group of Paris 34
Renzo Novatore Outlaw Anarchist, by Daniel Giraud 36
Iconoclasts, Forward! 38
Cry of Rebellion, by Renzo Novatore 39
In the Kingdom of the Spooks, by Renzo Novatore 47
Biographical note: Renzo Novatore 45
The Bonnot Gang: A Reminiscence, by E. Bertran 49
Notes on Individualism, by E. Bertran 53
Three European Invidividualists: some notes on Armand, Martucci, and Novatore, by S.E. Parker 57
Individualist Perspectives, by E. Armand 63
Is the Anarchist Ideal Realizable? by E. Armand 67
Biographical note: E. Armand 68
An Introduction to E. Armand; what he was for, what he was against, by S.E. Parker 70
E. Armand: sexual liberationist, by Catherine Campousy 75
Letter to E. Armand, by AmÃ©ca ScarfÃ³83
On Sexual Equality: Edward Carpenter & Oscar Wilde, by E. Armand 87
Individual Differences: my polemic with E. Armand, by Enzo da Villafiore 93
In Praise of Chaos, by Enzo Martucci 98
Manifesto dei Fuorigregge 103
Individualist-Anarchism, by S.E. Parker 107
2. Rebels Building Dreams: second wave individualists reflect on their predecessors
John Henry Mackay’s Appreciation of Stirner 112
poem: Anarchy, by John Henry Mackay 117
poem: To Max Stirner, by John Henry Mackay 117
Biographical note: John Henry Mackay 120
John Henry Mackay, by E. Armand 124
The Anarchists, by Jim Kernochan 125
Men against the State: the expositors of individualist anarchism in America, 1827-1908,
a review by S.E. Parker 130
Pioneering Egoist Texts, by S.E. Parker 132
The Influence of Tucker?s Ideas in France, by E. Armand 137
Stirner on Education, by S.E. Parker 141
Voltairine de Cleyre, by S.E. Parker 145
3. Smashing Fossils: individualists & egoists critique leftism and its heritage
Anarchism vs Socialism, by S.E. Parker 150
Social Totalitarianism, by Francis Ellingham 154
Stirner, Marx, and Fascism, by S.E. Parker 158
Enzo Martucci on Communism 163
4. Savage Summit: egoist perspectives on Nietzsche Nietzsche, by Enzo Martucci 168
Notes on Stirner & Nietzsche, by S.E. Parker 172
Stirner on Nietzsche, by J.N. Figgis 176
Stourzh on Stirner and Nietzche, by Herbert Stourzh 178
Nietzsche: Antichrist? by S.E. Parker 181
5. A Maze to Trap the Living: society & the unique one
Anarchism and Individualism, by Georges Palante 190
Biographical note: Georges Palante 212
Anarchism, Society, and the Socialized Mind, by Francis Ellingham 204
A Note on Authority, by Enzo Martucci 217
A Letter to a Friend, by Laurance Labadie 218
Superstition and Ignorance vs Courage and Self-Reliance, by Laurence Labadie 224
Joseph Labadie: Archivist, Poet 235
poem: Imperialism, by Joseph Labadie 227
Some Notes on Anarchism and the Proletarian Myth, by S.E. Parker 229
Enemies of Society: An Open Letter to the Editors of Freedom, by S.E. Parker 234
Anarchism, Individualism, and Society: Some Thoughts, by Scepticus 238
Anarchy and History: An Existentialist View, by N.A.W. 241
Freedom and Solitude, by Marilisa Fiorina 245
The Morality of Cooperation, by S.E. Parker 246
In Defence of Stirner, by Enzo Martucci 250
Enzo Martucci: Italian Lightbearer 264
Brief Statements, by Renzo Ferrari 269
Malfew Seklew: The Jester Philosopher of Egoism, by S.E. Parker 270
Brand: An Italian Anarchist and His Dream, by Peter Lamborn Wilson 274
Down with Civilization, by Enrico Arrigoni (aka Frank Brand) 312
My Anarchism, by S.E. Parker 317
Archists, Anarchists and Egoists, by S.E. Parker 323
Flaming Resurrections of a Charred Alphabet 328
(a glossary of basic terms)
To Sketch the Echo and To Paint the Link! 360
(a reading list)
Anarchism is the boldest of revolutionary social movements to emerge from the struggle against capitalism, it aims for a world free from all forms of domination and exploitation. But at its heart is a simple and convincing proposition: people know how to live their own lives and organize themselves better than any expert could. Others cynically claim that we need a government to protect us. They claim anarchy is impractical and utopian: it would never work. On the contrary, anarchist practice already has a long record, and has often worked quite well. The histories in this book show that an anarchist society can succeed at enabling all its members to meet their needs and desires.
This book takes examples from around the world, picking through history and anthropology, showing that people have, in different ways and at different times, demonstrated mutual aid, self-organization, autonomy, horizontal decision making, and so forth–the principles that anarchy is founded on–regardless of whether they called themselves anarchists or not. Too well documented to be strictly mythology, and too expansive to be strictly anthropology, this is an inspiring answer to the people who say that anarchists are utopian: a point-by-point introduction to how anarchy can and has actually worked.
Paper, $16.00, 5.5″x7.5″, 280 pages
The collected writings of Wolfi Landstreicher’s Willful Disobedience. Originally published as a zine from 1996 to 2006, Willful Disobedience was a continuously evolving provocation directed towards anarchists and fellow vagabonds to dig deeper into critical thought and joyous rebellion.
During the ten years of publication, Willful Disobedience wove together a web of ideas situation in the following threads: an anarchism based in Stirner-influenced egoism; an insurrectionary approach that sees individual insurrection to be as important as social insurrection; a non-primitivist critique of civilization that provides no program or model for a future society; explorations into a class analysis that rejects marxian categories, seeking to understand social relationships as they actually exist; insisting upon the need for anarchists to develop a coherent practice of theory capable of calling everything into question, including one’s own ideas; and an anti-political perspective, critical of leftism, democracy, identity politics and political correctitude.
Paper, $15.00, 5.5″x8.5″, 306 pages
Originally self-published in 2003, now edited and designed by Ardent Press, still one of the most hard-nosed books to call the left to account — with scathing, thoughtful rebuttals to those who continue to believe that the revolution is just a matter of consciousness-raising and recruitment, or that identity politics has anything to do with Marxist thought.
Many will reject the materialism inherent in this analysis, but we appreciate the logical consistency (and the occasional brilliance of writing) of Monsieur Dupont; so refreshing in a world in which people withdraw to muddle-headedness in incoherent attempts to fit all topics into some kind of grab bag, attempts seemingly designed to avoid offense rather than to follow ideas through to their logical (or even illogical) conclusions.
Unlike so many people who either reject theory all together (rather, who obscure the theory that they work from), or who embrace theory and ignore the ways reality doesn’t fit their ideas, Msr Dupont reflected on their experience (and that of others) and changed their theory to suit their lives. We need more people who are willing to be unpopular, who work an idea until it groans, who reflect on real life experiences and then acknowledge the ways in which prevailing theory doesn’t make sense, and who are then capable of challenging prevailing theory to be more coherent, more realistic, and more useful.
species being could be considered a companion text to Nihilist Communism, or vice versa: reading them together has been helpful for some. Nihilist Communism refers more to specific political occurrences, and species being fleshes out some of the more esoteric ideas.
Paper, $14.00, 5.5″x7.5″, 280 pages
species being and other stories takes on the questions that tantalize and torment politically aware and active people. species being is a wide-reaching and strikingly original collection of essays from frére dupont, one of the authors of Nihilist Communism, and sets out some of the ways in which people resist and comply with an oppressive status quo.
In species being frére dupont uses a variety of forms — poetic, dramatic, allegorical and biographical as well as the standard expository — to make points and ask questions. frére dupont looks unflinchingly at the illusions that revolutionaries use to protect themselves, and offers new perspectives, and with them, new hope for strategies that can address the reality we live in.
SPECIES BEING AND OTHER STORIES brings together insights from philosophy, politics, psychology and years of thinking about why and how people behave the way that they do, and more specifically, don’t behave the way that good radical rhetoric says that they will and should.
frére dupont is the pen name of a British author who has been involved in anti-state communism and anarchy since the 1980s. frére dupont represents both a continuation of, and a departure from, monsieur dupont, an improvisation that is based on the continuation of circumstances requiring more speech when all that was necessary to say has already been said.
Paper, $12.00, 4.5″x6.5″, 158 pages