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 Заголовок сообщения: M.Bookchin.The Spanish Anarchists;Heroic Years1868-1936
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Murray Bookchin

THE SPANISH ANARCHISTS
THE HEROIC YEARS 1868-1936


«En memoria de Russell Blackwell
-mi amigo y mi companero»


Contents

Introduction
Prologue: Fanelli's Journey
I. The "Idea" and Spain
BACKGROUND
MIKHAIL BAKUNIN
II. The Topography of Revolution
Ill. The Beginning
THE INTERNATIONAL IN SPAIN
THE CONGRESS OF 1870
THE LIBERAL FAILURE
IV. The Early Years
PROLETARIAN ANARCHISM
REBELLION AND REPRESSION
V. The Disinherited
PEASANT ANARCHISM
AGRARIAN UNIONS AND UPRISINGS
VI. Terrorists and "Saints"
Vll. Anarchosyndicalism
THE NEW FERMENT
THE "TRAGIC WEEK"
VIII. The CNT
THE EARLY YEARS
THE POSTWAR YEARS
THE PISTOLEROS
IX. From Dictatorship to Republic
THE PRIMO DE RIVERA DICTATORSHIP
THE AZANA COALITION
X. The Road to Revolution
EL BIENIO NEGRO
FROM FEBRUARY TO JULY
XI. Concluding Remarks
Bibliographical Essay
Index


Introduction

It is not widely known to the general reader that the largest movement in pre-Franco Spain was greatly influenced by Anarchist ideas . In 1936 , on the eve of the Spanish Civil War , approximately a million people were members of the Anarchosyndicalist CNT (Confederacion Nacional del Trabajo , or National Confederation of Labor) - an immense following if one bears in mind that the Spanish population numbered only twenty-four million . Until the victory of Franco , the CNT remained one of the largest labor federations in Spain .
Barcelona , then the largest industrial city in Spain , became an Anarchosyndicalist enclave within the republic . Its working class , overwhelmingly committed to the CNT , established a far-reaching , system of syndicalist self-management .Factories, utilities, transport facilities, even retail and wholesale enterprises, were taken over and administered by workers' committees and unions. The city itself was policed by a part-time guard of workingmen and justice was me ted out by popular revolutionary tribunals. Nor was Barcelona alone in this radical reconstruction of economic and social life; the movement, in varying degrees, embraced Valencia, Malaga, CNT-controlled factories in the large Basque industrial cities, and smaller communities such as Lerida, Alcoy, Granollers, Gerona, and Rubi.
Many of the land laborers and peasants of Andalusia were also Anarchist in outlook. During the first few weeks of the Civil War, before the south of Spain was overrun by fascist armies, these rural people established communal systems of land tenure, in some cases abolishing the use of money for intemal transactions, establishing free, communistic systems of production and distribution, and creating a decision-making procedure based on popular assemblies and direct, face-to-face democracy. Perhaps even more significant were the well-organized Anarchist collectives in Republican-held areas of Aragon, which were grouped into a network under the Council of Aragon, largely under the control of the CNT. Collectives tended to predominate in many areas of Catalonia and the Levant, and were common even in Socialist-controlled Castile.
These experiences alone, so challenging to popular notions of a libertarian society as an unworkable utopia, would warrant a book on Spanish Anarchism. But they also have a certain intrinsic interest. To anyone with a concern for novel social forms, the Anarchist collectives of Spain raise many fascinating questions: how were the collective farms and factories established? How well did they work? Did they create any administrative difficulties? These collectives, moreover, were not mere experiments created by idle dreamers; they emerged from a dramatic social revolution that was to mark the climax - and tragic end - of the traditional workers' movement. High-lighting the reconstructive efforts of the Anarchists was the Spanish Civil War itself, an unforgettable conflict that was to last nearly three bitter years, claim an estimated million lives, and stir the deepest passions of people throughout the world .
No less sig nificant was the development of the Spanish Anarchist movement from the 1870s to the mid-1930s-its forms of organization, its influence on the lives of ordinary workers and peasants, its internal conflicts, and its varied fortunes. For Spanish Anarchism remained above all a peoples' movement, reflecting the cherished ideals, dreams, and values of ordinary individ uals, not an esoteric credo and tightly knit professional party far removed from the everyday experiences of the villager and factory worker. The resiliency and tenacity that kept Spanish Anarchism alive in urban barrios and rural pueblos for nearly seventy years, despite unrelenting persecution, is understandable only if we view this movement as an expression of plebian Spanish society itself rather than as a body of exotic libertarian doctrines.
The present volume (the first of two that will trace the history of the movement up to the current period) is primarily concerned with the organizational and social issues that marked the years of Spanish Anarchism's ascendency and, finally, of its drift toward civil war - a
span of time I have designated as its "heroic period" . Despite the fascination that the collectives of 1936-39 hold for us, I believe it is immensely rewarding to explore how ordinary workers and peasants for nearly three generations managed to build the combative organizations that formed the underpinning of these collectives; how they managed to claim for themselves and incorporate in their everyday lives revolutionary societies and unions that we normally relegate to the work place and the political sphere. Quite as significant in my eyes are the organizational structures, so libertarian in character, that made it possible for workers and peasants to participate in these societies and unions, to exercise extraordinary control over their policies, and to gain for themselves a new sense of personality and inner individual strength . Whatever our views of Spanish Anarchism, it has far too much to teach us to remain so little known to general reader, and it is primarily for this reader that I have written the present volume.
To a certain extent I have been researching the materials for this book since the early 1960s. In 1967 I began systematically to gather data with a view toward writing it during a lengthy trip to Europe, where I interviewed exiled Spanish Anarchists. The present volume was almost entirely completed by 1969. At that time virtually no literature existed in English on Spanish Anarchism except for Gerald Brenan's empathetic but rather incomplete accounts in the Spanish Labyrinth and the largely personal narratives of Franz Borkenau and George Orwell. Apart from these works, the scanty references to the Spanish Anarchists in English seemed appallingly insensitive to the ideals of a very sizable section of the Spanish people. Even today, most of the works on Spain by conservative, liberal, and Marxist writers offer no serious appraisal of the libertarian viewpoint and exhibit shocking malice toward its so-called "extreme" wing as represented by the Anarchist action groups. It may well be felt by many students of Spanish Anarchism that I have gone to another extreme.
Perhaps - but it seemed especially important to me, whatever my personal reservations, that the voices of these groups be expressed with a greater degree of understanding than they have generally received.
The Spanish Civil War, in fact, was very much part of my own life and affected me more deeply than any other conflict in a lifetime that has seen a terrible international war and the decades of nearly chronic warfare that followed it. My sympathies, indeed my utter devotion, lay with the Spanish left, which I initinlly identified as a very young man with the Communist Party and, later, as the Civil War came to its terrible close, with the POUM (Partido Obrero de Unificacion Marxista).
By the late 1950s, however, I had become more informed about Spanish Anarchism, " movement that had been little known to American radicals of the 1930s, and began to study its origins and trajectory. As one who had lived through the Spanish Civil War period, indeed, who vividly recalled the uprising of the Asturian miners in October 1934, I thought it all the more necessary to correct the false image that, if it existed in my mind, almost certainly existed in the minds of my less politically involved contemporaries. Thus this book is in part a rediscovery of a magnificent historic experience that culminated in a deeply moving tragedy. I have tried to offer at least an understanding voice to those liberty-loving people who marched, fought, and died by the thousands under the black-and-red banners of Spanish Anarchosyndicalism, to pay a fair tribute to their idealism without removing their organizations from the light of well-intentioned criticism.
Another, more contemporary factor motivated me to write this book. The appearance of the black flag of Anarchism in the streets of Paris and many American cities during the 1960s, the strong anarchistic sentiments of radical youth during that fervent decade, and the wide in terest in Anarchist theories that exists today, seem to warrant an account and evaluation of the largest organized Anarchist movement to appear in our century. There are many differences, to be sure, between the Anarchist movement of Spain and the anarchistic currents that seemed to flow in the youth revolt of the 1960s. Spanish Anarchism was rooted in an era of material scarcity; its essential thrust was directed against the poverty and exploitation that had reduced millions of Spanish workers and peasants to near-animal squalor. Not surprisingly, the Spanish Anarchists saw the world through puritanical lenses. Uving in a society where little was available for all to enjoy, they excoriated the dissoluteness of the ruling classes as grossly immoral . They reacted to the opulence and idleness of the wealthy with a stern ethical credo that emphasized duty, the responsibility of all to work, and a disdain for the pleasures of the flesh.
The anarchistic youth of the 1960s, on the other hand, held diametrically opposite views. Raised in an era of dazzling advances in technology and productivity, they questioned the need for toil and the renunciation of pleasure.
Their credos were sensuous and hedonistic. Whether they were conscious of tradition or not, their plea for enlarging experience seemed to echo the writings of Sade, Lautreamont, the Dadaists and the surrealists rather than those of the "classical" Anarchists of a century ago.
Yet when I started this book, I could not help feeling that an aging Spanish Anarchist easily could have communicated with the revolutionary youth of the 1960s and with the ecologically oriented young people of today. In contrast to Marxian movements, Spanish Anarchism placed a strong emphasis on life-style: on a total remaking
of the individual along libertarian lines. It deeply valued spontaneity, passion, and initiative from below. And it thoroughly detested authority and hierarchy in any form. Despite its stern moral outlook, Spanish Anarchism opposed the marriage ceremony as a bourgeois sham, advocating instead a free union of partners, and it regarded sexual practices as a private affair, governable only by a respect for the rights of women. One must know the Spain of the 1930s, with its strong patriarchal traditions, to recognize what a bold departure Anarchist practices represented from the norms of even the poorest, most exploited, and most neglected classes in the country.
Above all, Spanish Anarchism was vitally experimental. The Summerhill-type schools of recent memory were the direct heirs of experiments in libertarian education initiated by Spanish intellectuals who had been nourished by Anarchist ideals. The concept of living close to nature lent Spanish Anarchism some of its most unique feature - vegetarian diets, often favoring uncooked foods; ecological horticulture; simplicity of dress; a passion for the countryside; even nudism - but such expressions of "naturalism" also became the subject of much buffoonery in the Spanish press of the time (and of condescending disdain on the part of many present-day academicians). The movement was keenly preoccupied with all the concrete details of a future libertarian society. Spanish Anarchists avidly discussed almost every change a revolution could be expected to make in their daily lives, and many of them immediately translated precept into practice as far as this was humanly possible. Thousands of Spanish Anarchists altered their diets and abandoned such habit-forming "vices" as cigarette-smoking and drinking. Many became proficient in Esperanto in the conviction that, after the revolution, all national barriers would fall away and human beings would speak a
common language and share a common cultural traditional.
This high sense of community and solidarity gave rise to the Anarchist "affinity group," an organizational form based not merely on political or ideological ties, but often on close friendship and deep personal involvement. In a movement that called for the use of direct action, Anarchist groups produced individuals of unusual character and striking boldness. To be sure, I would not want these remarks to create the impression that the Spanish Anarchist movement was a revolutionary crusade of uncompromising, morally unblemished "saints". Like all organizations in Spain, the movement had its fair share of self-seeking opportunists who betrayed its libertarian ideals in critical moments of struggle. But what made it unique, even in a land where courage and dignity have always been highly prized, were those remarkable personalities like Fermin Salvochea, Anselmo Lorenzo, and Buenaventura Durruti, who literally personified different aspects of its temperament and libertarian ideals. It has been my good fortune to meet some of the best living representatives of this movement in their places of exile and to gain their assistance in gathering material for this book.
I do not claim to have written an exhaustive account of Spanish Anarchism.For an author to make such a claim would require the backing of several volumes. The scholarly literature consists of sizable works that deal with periods of a decade or less, a literature that is not likely to command the attention of the general reader. Accordingly, I have chosen to dwell upon the turning points of the movement, especially those moments of social creativity which are Likely to have importance for our own time. I have also tried to tell the story of the more outstanding Spanish Anarchists: the saint-like ascetics and fiery pistoleros, the defiant terrorists and plodding organizers, the scholarly theorists and untutored activists.
The Spanish Civil War came to an end almost forty years ago. The generation that was so deeply involved in its affairs, whether in Spain itself or abroad, is passing away. A real danger exists that the passions aroused by this immense conflict will disappear in the future literature on the subject. And without that passion, it will be difficult
to appraise the largest popular movement in the conflict - the Spanish Anarchists - for it was a movement that made spiritual demands of its adherents that are often incomprehensible today. Leaving aside the changes in life-style I've already noted, I should emphasize that to be an Anarchist in Spain , indeed, to be a radical generally in the 1930s, meant that one was uncompromisingly opposed to the established order. Even Socialists retained this high sence of revolutionary principle, in Spain and in many other countries, despite the reformism of the Communist and Social Democratic parties. To participate in bourgeois cabinets, for example, enrned one the epithet of "Millerandism," a harshly derogatory term which referred to the unprecedented entry of the French Socialist Millerand into a bourgeois cabinet prior to the First World War.
Today, an ecumenical reformism is taken for granted by virtually the entire left. If the word "Millerandism" has been dropped from the political vocabulary of the left, it is not because revolutionary "purity" has been restored in the major workers' parties but, quite to the contrary, because the practice is too widespread to require an opprobrious designation. The term "libertarian" , devised by French Anarchists to deal with the harsh anti-Anarchist legislation at the end of the last century, has lost virtually all its revolutionary meaning. The word "Anarchist" itself becomes meaningless when it is used as a self-
description by political dilettantes so light-minded that they move in and out of authoritarian or reformistic organizations as casually as they change a brand of bread or coffee. Contemporary capitalism, with its "revolutionary" motor vehicles and hand lotions, has subverted not only the time-honored ideals of radicalism, but the language and nomenclature for expressing them.
It is emotionally refreshing as well as intellectually rewarding to look back to a time when these words still had meaning, indeed, when content and conviction as such had definition and reality. People today do not hold ideals; they hold "opinions." The Spanish Anarchists, as well as many other radicals of the pre-Civil War era, still had ideals which they did not lightly discard like the brand names of products. The Anarchists imparted a spiritual meaning, intellectual logic, and dignity to the libertarian ideal which precluded flirtations with their opponents - those not only in the bourgeois world but also in the authoritarian left. However unsophisticated they proved to be in many ideological matters, it would have seemed inconceivable to them that an Anarchist could acknowledge the coexistence of a propertied sector of society with a collective one, ignore or slight differences in class interests and politics, or accept a policy of accommodation with a centralized state or authoritarian party, however "libertarian" their opponents might seem in other respects. Basic diffe rences were meant to be respected, not ignored; indeed, they were meant to be deepened by the logic of dispute and examination, not compromised by emphasizing superficial resemblances and a liberal accommodation to ideological divisions. The slaughter and terror that followed in the wake of Franco's march toward Madrid in the late summer of 1936 and the physical hemorrhage that claimed so many lives in the long course of the Civil War produced a spiritual hemorrhage as well, bringing to the surface all the latent weaknesses of the classica l workers' movement as such, both Anarchist and Socialist. I have pointed to some of these weaknesses in the closing chapter of this volume. But a high sense of revolutionary commitment remained and continued for decades. That events involving the sheer physical survival of people may induce compromises between ideals and realities is no more surprising in the lifetime of a movement than it is in that of an individual. But that these very ideals should be casually dismissed or forgotten, replaced by a flippant ecumenicnlism in which one deals with social goals like fashions, is unforgivable.
My feeling for the Spanish Anarchist sense of commitment to a highly principled libertarian ideal - organizationally as well as ideologically - forms still another part of my motives for writing this book. A decent respect for the memory of the many thousands who perished for their libertarian goals would require that we state these goals clearly and unequivocillly, quite aside from whether we agree with them or not. For surely these dead deserve the minimal tribute of identifying Anarchism with social revolution, not with fashionable concepts of decentralization and self-management that comfortably
coexist with state power, the profit economy, and multinational corporations. Few people today seem concerned to distinguish the Spanish Anarchists' version of revolutionary decentralization and self-management from the liberal ones that are so much in vogue. Anselmo Lorenzo, Fermin Salvochea, and the young faistas of the
1930s would have been appalled at the claim that their ideas had found realization in present-day Chinese "communes" or in the European trade-union leaders who sit as "workers' representatives" on corporate boards of directors. Spanish Anarchist notions of communes, self-management, and technological innovation are totally
incompatible with any system of state power or private property and ullerly opposed to any compromise with bourgeois society.
Contemporaneity alone does not, in my view, establish the need for a book on Spanish Anarchism. I could easily have adduced Franco's death as justification for offering this book to the public, and certainly it could be cited as a good reason for reading such a work, but my motives for writing it are not to be explained by the current interest in Spain. The basic question raised by Spanish Anarchism was whether it is possible for people to gain full, direct, face-to-face control over their everyday lives, to manage society in their own way - not as "masses" guided by professional leaders, but as thoroughly liberated individuals in a world without leaders or led, without masters or slaves. The greatly popular uprising of july 1936, especially in the Anarchist centers of Spain, tried to approximate this goal. That the effort failed at a terrible cost in life and morale does not nullify the inherent truth of the goal itself.
Finally, I would like to remind the reader that Spanish life has changed greatly from the conditions described in this volume. Spain is no longer a predominantly agrarian country and the traditional pueblo is rapidly giving way to the modern town and city. This should be clearly borne in mind at all times while reading the book. The image of "eternal Spain" has always been a reactionary one. Today, when Spain has become one of the most industrialized countries in the world, it is simply absurd. Yet there is much of a preindustrial and precapitalist nature that lingers on in Spain, and it is devoutly to be hoped that the old Anarchist dreamers of melding the solidarity of earlier village lifeways with a fairly advanced technological society will have reality for the Spanish present and future.

Before concluding this introduction, I would like to explain certain unorthodoxies in the writing of the book and extend my acknow-ledgement to individuals who rendered invaluable assistance in its preparation.
Throughout most of their history, the Spanish Anarchists were adherents of a trade-union form of Anarchism which is generally designated as "Anarchosyndicalism"(1*). In contrast to many writers on the subject who see Spanish Anarchosyndicalism as a distinctly twentieth-century development ,one that had its origins in France, I am now quite convinced that the Spanish section of the First International was Anarchosyndicalist from its very inception in the early 1870s. This tradition persisted, I believe, in virtually all libertarian unions up to and into the formation of the CNT. The tradition, moreover, applied as much to the land laborers' unions of Andalusia as to the textile workers' unions of Barcelona. French Anarchosyndicalism mаy have been the source for а comprehensive theory of the syndicalist general strike, but the Spanish Anarchists were practicing Anarchosyndicalist tactics decades earlier and, in many cases, were quite conscious of their revolutionary import before the word "Anarchosyndicalist" itself came into vogue.(*2)
Accordingly, I have used the terms "Anarchist" and " Anarchosyndicalist" almost intuitively, ordinarily combining libertarians of all persuasions under the "Anarchist" rubric when they seemed to confront the Marxists, the state power, and their class opponents as a fairly unified tendency in Spanish society and singling out "Anarchosyndicalists" when they were functioning largely from a syndicalist point of view. The mingling of these terms was not uncommon in many works on Spain during the 1930s, as witness Gerald Brenan's Tire Spanish Labyrinth and Franz Borkenau's Tire Spanish Cockpit.
I should also note that I have abandoned the use of the usual accent that appears in many Spanish words. I fail to see why Lerida and Leon (the latter by no means consistently) have accents, while Andalusia and Aragon do not. For the sake of consistency, I have removed the accents entirely, all the more because this book is written for an English-reading public.
The Spanish Anarchists were given to acronyms like faista, cenetista, and ugetista for members of the FAI, CNT, and the Socialist-controlled UGT. I have retained this vocabulary in the book but have avoided the more familiar diminutives they used for their periodicals, such as "Soli" for Solidaridad Obrera.
Whatever originality this book can claim is due primarily to interviews I have had with Spanish Anarchists and with non-Spaniards who were personally involved with their movement. Although I have consulted a large number of books, periodicals, letters, and reports on the Spanish Anarchist movement, my most rewarding experiences have come from the individuals who knew it at first hand.
Space limitations make it possible for me to list the names of only a few. I am deeply grateful to a very kindly man, Jose Peirats, the historian of Spanish Anarchism in its Inter period, for painstnkingly explaining the structure of the CNT and FAI, and for many facts about the atmosphere in Barcelona during the years of his youth.
Peirats, whom I view as a friend, has done more to convey the mood of the Spanish Anarchist movement in the pre-Civil War period than any text could possibly do. For this sense of personal contact as well as for his invaluable writings on the trajectory of Spanish Anarchism, I owe him an immeasurable debt.
I have also learned a great deal from personal conversations with Gaston Leval. He has been an indispensable source of information about the Anarchist collectives in Spain during the Civil War (a field in which his command of the facts is unparalleled); he has also given me the benefit of his insights and, for the purposes of this first volume, of his experiences in the CNT during the 1920s. Leval, who is no apologist for the CNT and FAI, contributed considerably to my appraisal of the exaggerated emphasis on Anarchist pistolerismo during that critical time and presented me with a more balanced picture of the early 1920s than I have received from the conventional literature on the subject.
To Pablo Ruiz, I owe a truly immense debt for the detailed account he gave me of the founding and activities of the Friends of Durruti, the small but heroic group that did so much to uphold the honor of Spanish Anarchism during the difficult "ministerial" crisis within the movement in 1936-37. The late Cipriano Mera provided me with invaluable details on the structure of the Anarchist militias during the Civil War and on the movement's activities in Madrid during the early 1930s. Although a movement in exile is ordinarily distorted by its isolation and internal connicts, I gained some sense of the life of Spanish Anarchism by attending meetings of the CNT in Paris, visiting the homes of its members, and hearing deeply moving accounts of the solidarity these individuals retained in the years following the defeat of their movement in 1939.
I owe a great deal to two friends, Sam Dolgoff and the late Russell Blackwell, for their assistance in assembling data for this book and giving freely of their personal recollections. That I dedicated this volume to the memory of Russell Blackwell is more than act of friendship. Blackwell had fought with the Friends of Durruti in Barcelona during the May uprising in 1937. In time he came to symbolize the melding of Spanish and American libertarian ideals in a form that seemed unsurpassed by anyone I had known. I must also express my
appreciation to Federico Arcos and Will Watson for making materials available to me that are very difficult to obtain in the United States; to my good friend, Vernon Richards, for his valuable critical insights; to Frank Mintz for sharing many facts drawn from this own researches; to the custodians of the Labadie Collection at the University of Michigan for permission to freely examine documents and unpublished dissertations on various periods of the movement's history; to Susan Harding for sending me additional European material and offering criticisms that have been useful in preparing the text.
In writing a general narrative of this kind, an author must make a decision on where to draw the limits to his research if he is to complete the work in a reasonable period of time. Despite the comparatively improved climate of Franco's Spain a decade ago, my visit to the country in 1967 coincided precisely with the publication of an article in my own name in a leading European Anarchist periodical, and I decided it would be imprudent to continue the research I had planned in that country. In any case, European archives on Spanish Anarchism are so immense that I could foresee many years of research abroad were I to sacrifice my goal of a general narrative for a detailed history based on primary sources. Accordingly, I decided to shift my research back to the United States after visiting various European cities where I was fortuna te to gather much of the material I required to write this book.
Since the late 1960s, a truly voluminous literature has been published on different periods of Spanish Anarchism. Wherever possible I have made use of these new studies to check and modify my own largely completed work. Happily, I have found surprisingly little that required alteration and much that supports generalizations that were partly hypothetical when they were first committed to paper. In so far-reaching a project, it is inevitable that factual errors will occur. I can only hope they will prove to be minimal and insignificant. The
historical interpretations in this volume are my responsibility alone and should not be imputed to the many individuals who so generously aided me in other respects.

«Murray Bookchin
November, 1976
Ramapo College of New Jersey
Mahwah, New Jersey

Goddard College
Plainfield, Vermont

Notes
(*1) For an explanation of the different forms of Anarchism, see pages 17-31
below.
(*2) Engels, it is worth noting, clearly showed an understanding of the
Anarchosyndicalist nature of the Spanish section in his article ''Bakuninists at Work." Surprisingly, this fact has yet to be adequately reflected in many current works on the Spanish Anarchist movement.


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Prologue:
Fanelli's Journey


In late October 1868, Giuseppi Fanelli, a tall, heavily bearded Italian of about forty, arrived at Barcelona after a railroad journey from Geneva. It was Fanelli's first visit to Spain. He had reached the city without incident and he would leave it, a few months later,
without any interference by the Spanish authorities. There was nothing in his appearance that would have distinguished him from any other visiting Italian, except perhaps for his height and his intense
prepossessing stature.
But Giuseppi Fanelli was not an ordinary visitor to Spain. His brief journey was to have a far-reaching influence, providing the catalyst for what was not only the most widespread workers' and
peasants' movement in modern Spain, but the largest Anarchist movement in modern Europe. For Fanelli was an experienced Italian revolutionary, a supporter of the Russian Anarchist Mikhail Bakunin, and a highly gifted propagandist. His journey had been organized by Bakunin in order to gain Spanish adherents to the International
Workingmen's Association, the famous "First International" established by European workers a few years earlier.
Fanelli's trip should have been a complete fiasco. Financially, it was conducted on a shoestring. Bakunin had raised barely enough money to pay for the fare, with the result that Fanelli, chronically short of funds, was constantly pressed for time. His knowledge of Spain was limited and he could speak scarcely a sentence in Spanish.
In Barcelona, he managed after some difficulty to find Elie Redus, the
distinguished French anthropologist and a firm Bakuninist, who was visiting the Catalan port for journalistic reasons. Otherwise, Fanelli knew no one in the city. Apparently, the two men quarreled over Reclus's accommodating attitude toward his Spanish Republican
friends, for Fanelli, much to his host's embarrassment, tried to win them over to Anarchism. After borrowing some money from Reclus to continue his journey, the Italian went on to Madrid where he met Jose Guisascola, the owner of the periodical La Igualdad. He put Fanelli in touch with a group of workers with "very advanced ideas",
and a small, intimate meeting was arranged in the guest room of one
Rubau Donadeu. Fanelli could only address them in Italian or French,
and the workers, most of whom knew only Spanish, had neglected to
bring along an interpreter. But once the tall, lean Italian began to speak, his rapport with the audience was so complete that all barriers of language were quickly swept away. Using a wealth of Latin gestures and tonal expressions, Fanelli managed to convey with electric
effect the richness of his libertarian visions and the bitterness of his anger toward human suffering and exploitation. The workers, accustomed to the moderate expressions of Spanish liberals, were stunned.
Decades later, Anselmo Lorenzo, who attended the meeting as a young man, describes the talk with a vividness of memory that time seems to have left undimmed. Fanelli's "black expressive eyes," he recalls, "flashed like lightning or took on the appearance of kindly
compassion according to the sentiments that dominated him. His
voice had a metallic tone and was susceptible to all the inflections
^propriate to what he was saying, passing rapidly from accents of
anger and menace against tyrants and exploiters to take on those of
suffering, regret, and consolation, when he spoke of the pains of the
exploited, either as one who without suffering them himself understands them, or as one who through his altruistic feelings delights in
presenting an ultra-revolutionary ideal of peace and fraternity. He spoke in French and Italian, but we could understand his expressive mimicry and follow his speech."
Fanelli scored a complete triumph. All those present declared themselves for the International. He extended his stay in Madrid for several weeks, cultivating his newly won adherents; together they
had three or four "propaganda sessions," alternating with intimate conversations on walks and in cafes. Lorenzo recalls that he was "especially favored" with Fanelli's confidences. If this is so, Fanelli
showed excellent judgment: Anselmo Lorenzo was to live for many years, and he remained a dedicated revolutionary, earning the sobriquet "the grandfather of Spanish Anarchism." His contribution to
the spread of Anarchist ideas in Barcelona and Andalusia over the
decades ahead was enormous.
On January 24, 1869, Fanelli met with his Madrid converts for the last time. Although the small group, composed mostly of printing workers, house painters, and shoemakers, numbered little more than twenty, it officially declared itself the Madrid section of the International Workingmen's Association. Lorenzo tried to persuade Fanelli
to remain longer, but he declined. The Italian explained that he had to leave because it was necessary for individuals and groups to develop "by their own efforts, with their own values," so that the "great common work will not lack the individual and local characteristics
which make for a kind of variety that does not endanger unity," but in fact yields a "whole that is the sum of many different elements." In these few remarks, summarized by Lorenzo, Fanelli touches upon the
organizational principle and practice so basic to Anarchism, that order reaches its most harmonious form through the spontaneous, unhampered development of individuality and variety. Ultimately,
the vitality of the Spanish Anarchist movement was to depend on the
extent to which it made this principle a living force in its social and
organizational activites.
Before leaving Spain, Fanelli stopped again in Barcelona. This time he had a letter of introduction from Jose Rubau Donadeu, one of his Madrid converts, to the painter Jose Luis Pellicer, a radical democrat with strong Federalist convictions. Pellicer arranged a meeting in his studio that attracted some twenty Republicans, most of whom were individuals with established professional backgrounds. This sophisticated, middle-class audience was more skeptical of Fanelli's impassioned oratory than the Madrilenos. Probably no more than a handful of young men, mostly students, were inclined to commit themselves to the Italian's Anarchist ideas, but they included Rafael
Farga Pellicer, the nephew of Jose Luis, who was to play an important role in establishing the International in Barcelona. By this time, Fanelli was almost out of funds, and after a brief stay in the Catalan seaport, he departed for Marseilles.
Guiseppi Fanelli never returned to Spain. He died only eight years later, a victim of tuberculosis at the age of forty-eight. Like so many young Italians of his day, Fanelli had given up a promising career as an architect and engineer to work for the revolution, at first serving under Garibaldi and later as an emissary of Mazzini. With the victory of the national cause in 1861, he became a deputy in the Italian parliament. His official position earned him the traditional free railway pass to travel all over Italy, and the government provided him with a modest pension for the loss of his health as a political prisoner of the Bourbons. He met Bakunin in 1866 at Ischia, only two years before his journey to Spain, and fell completely under the charismatic spell of the Russian revolutionary. For Fanelli, revolution was a way of life, not merely a distant theoretical goal, and his latter years as a
deputy were spent on the railways, preaching social revolution during the day in peasant villages throughout Italy, later returning to sleep in the train at night.
It is doubtful that he fully recognized the scope of his achievement in Spain. Previous attempts to implant Anarchist ideas there go as far back as 1845, when Ramon de la Sagra, a disciple of Proudhon, founded a libertarian journal in Coruna. But the paper. El Porvenir, was soon suppressed by the authorities and Sagra died in exile without exerting any influence in his native country.
Fanelli's achievement was unique and prophetic. Perhaps there is hyperbole in this story as it has come down to us. But even that is important because it shows the passionately imaginative elements
that enter into the Spanish yearnings for freedom. And, we shall see, Spain was uniquely susceptible to Anarchist visions of liberation.


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