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Anarchy After Leftism by Bob Black

By Bob Black

A respond to, and an attack on, Murray Bookchin's 'Social Anarchism Or way of life Anarchism,' Bookchin himself, Bookchinism, and so known as 'anarcho-leftism.'

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He berates anarchist “decadence” over and over, to which he often appends abstract denunciations of “bourgeois” or “petty bourgeois” tendencies. “Decadence” is an epithet so indiscriminately applied that a spirited case has been made for retiring it from responsible discourse (Gilman 1975). Even without going quite so far, undeniably “'decadent’ as a term of political and social abuse has a generous range of applications,” especially as deployed by Marxists and Fascists (Adams 1983: 1). To speak of the Dean’s denunciations of le bourgeois as “abstract” is my characteristically courteous way of hinting that he of all people had better pick his words more carefully.

Nor is Bob really interested in rescuing anarchist ideology from itself. He just wants to set the record straight by clearing away worse than useless polemics. Defending the potential for anarchy is merely an unpleasant task of menial anti-ideological labor that Bob has performed because no one else volunteered to wash these particular dirty dishes, [1] while he wants to get on with cooking another meal. But that’s by no means all that’s going on here. Disposing of Murray Bookchin’s ideological and rhetorical rubbish gives Bob the chance to develop the grounds for a more general attack on the remaining vestiges of leftism while he’s at it.

1994: 50) where the text itself has identified Black as the source. I request the forbearance of readers who think that in explaining the almost-obvious I am talking down to them. I expect that nearly all of my readers are either familiar with this citation system or else would have no difficulty figuring it out. I chose to use it to supply at least the rudiments of references simultaneously with what I make of them. I choose to explain the system here from an excess of caution. I expect the Bookchinist counterattack to rely heavily on confusionist quibbling about details, including bibliographic details.

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