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Murray Bookchin Interview 1 - 1994

Still from Murray Bookchin Interview 1


Murray Bookchin interview 1


How he arrived at his anarchist ideas. As well as his political development during the 1930s, particularly the situation in Spain.

Q. origins of ideas?

Q. Pursue Utopia?

07:11 1934 spain. Astoria worker uprising crushed by Franco. USA depression.

07:14 Prohibition.

07:15 Labour movement. Union. Congress of Industrial Organisations John L Lewis (?).

07:17 disallusion with communists, move to right.

07:19 1935 convinced working class revolution was possible

17:20 Q: Describe first political speech.

07:21 Talks, Union Sq. IWW. Oration. Speaking 11 or 12 addressing crowds. Obliged to orate. Young Communist League.

07:26 Q. remember any speakers?

07:30 Q. Inciting incident to politics?

Jewish experience. Racial prejudice. Segregation. Not tow communist line.

07:33 (plane) Anti-Stalin.

07:35 No histories of anarchism in his life. Kropotkin. Anarchist landlord gave him Appeal to the Young. Did not resonate.

07:38 Spanish Civil War was a revolution. Suppression of anarcho syndicatalism history. Moscow crimes. May 1937 Barcelona uprising against the communists. Rebelling against communists, but not expelled.

07:41 Speaking tour for CIO around New Jersey. Met industrial workers. Company goons attack. 1937 Memorial Day shooting Chicago.

Q. How did other people take your move away from Stalin?

Educational organiser. Wanted to go to Spain with International Brigade. Offered a communist psychiatrist.

07:48 Dropped out 1938 of Young Communist League. Madison Sq Rally. Trotsky's leaflet calling for confrontation of Nazis on the streets.

07:49 Wide shot. 1938 Hitler Stalin Pact. Expelled. Became Trotskist.

07:51 Workers School. became aware of Emma Goldman, Berkman, richer class culture at that time.

07:57 Why 1930s so important?

07:58 In 1920s everyone believed in capitalism in USA. Depression radicalised. Not know of labour camps in USSR. Capitalism appeared in chronic crisis.

08:01 Spain influenced. Everyone talking about a new society, including the fascists. General strikes. Labour wars. Sense of community.

08:04 1930s very creative.

08:05 Q. Anarchist Landlord.

BoHo, small goatee. showed him books. talked about what anarchists would do. ( repeating earlier answer). romantic at 13. direct action appealed. Sabotage against the war was colourful. still thinking as marxist-leninist. Iconoclast.

Q. 08:11 did anarchist ideas bring him into conflict with other politic movements?

08:15 Desire to contribution to Spanish revolution drove him back into movement. Stalin's Popular Front of 1935 lead to collaboration with bourgeoisie.

18:18 Q. Inciting moment again.

A. From a revolutionary family.

worried about Individual anarchists. No single event radicalised.

18:26 Q. Utopian visions.

18:26 Utopian rational society

Tape ends


07:04 change colour balance.

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Date: May 1994
Location: Murray's house
City: Burlington, Vermont, USA
Crew: Mark Saunders
Scene 1: How Russian 1905 exiled Grandmother influenced his politics
Scene 2: Class consciousness, break with stalinism, Young Pioneer
Scene 3: - Oration
Scene 4: - Spain
Original Format - colour, hi8, 90 mins
Language versions - english
Useful link: - http://www.spectacle.co.uk/...

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