Luigi Galleani, 1907

Luigi Galleani (1861-1931) was an intransigent Italian anarchist communist critical of all conventional organization, including trade unions and any attempts to create any “anarchist party.” Although published in 1 925, The End of Anarchism actually dates from 1907. Malatesta, one of the “organizationalists” criticized by Galleani, nevertheless described it as “a clear, serene, eloquent exposition of communist anarchism, ” although he personally found it “too optimistic, too simplistic and too trusting in natural harmonies”.

A farmer who lives in an Alpine valley, in the present conditions of his development, may have satisfied all his needs-eaten, drunk, and rested to his heart’s content; while a worker who lives in London, in Paris, or in Berlin, may willingly give up a quarter of his salary and several hours of his rest, in order to satisfy a whole category of needs totally unknown to the farmer stranded among the gorges of the Alps or the peaks of the Apennine mountains-to spend an hour of intense and moving life at the theatre, at the museum or at the library, to buy a recently published book or the  latest issue of a newspaper, to enjoy a performance of Wagner or a lecture at the Sorbonne.

Since these needs vary, not only according to time and place, but also according to the temperament, disposition and development of each individual, it is clear that only he or she who experiences and feels them is in a position to appreciate them and to measure adequately the satisfaction they may give.

Therefore, in drawing the measure of each person’s share in the total social production from need, from the complex and infinite needs of each organism, rather than from the social use-value of each one’s labour, anarchist-communism is inspired not only by a logical motive, but also by an eminently practical criterion of equality and justice …

In order to believe in the possibility, in the realization of a society without private property and without government, it is not necessary that men be angels. It will be enough that this society be capable of satisfying the needs of all its members on the land which has become again the great mother of us all, made fertile by human labour, redeemed from all humiliations and yokes. The bourgeois, who a re in a position to satisfy these needs in large measure are the best witnesses to the fact that if energy can be diverted, it cannot be constrained, so that our opponents’ fears of inertia and vagrancy are plainly absurd: fencing, horsemanship, boating, motoring, mountain-climbing, oceanic cruising, politics, diplomacy, philanthropy, tropical and polar expeditions are nothing but the different aspects, physical or intellectual, frivolous or noble, of the energy and vital exuberance which burst forth from the full satisfaction of needs enjoyed by the ruling classes.

When everyone’s physical, intellectual and moral needs are fully satisfied, we shall have in every human being the exuberance of energy that is at present the exclusive privilege of the ruling classes …

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