Saturday, May 30, 2009

Happy 195th Birthday Bakunin!

The historical Anarchist activist, philosopher, and writer - Mikhail Bakunin - remains a beacon for human freedom and justice worldwide.

Below is a time line of events corresponding to his life:

1814 – May 30, Mikhail Alexandrovich Bakunin born into a noble family at Pryamukhino, Russian Empire

1829 – Entered Artillery Academy in St. Petersburg

1835 – Junior officer Bakunin quits the Russian army; begins his study of philosophy in Moscow

1840 – Moves to Berlin, is attracted to socialism, the Hegelian-Left, and pan-Slavic ideas

1842 – Moves to Dresden, capital of the German Kingdom of Saxony; publishes his essay “Reaction in Germany”

1844 – Russian Emperor Nicholas strips Bakunin of his title to “nobility,” confiscates his family’s land, and sentences him to life-imprisonment in absentia

1844-47 – Travels through Europe often being deported, meets with (the primitive) French Anarchist PJ Proudhoun, and later Karl Marx

1848-49 – Partakes in the Czech Rebellion of 1848 and in the revolutionary uprisings of Saxony & France; Bakunin becomes a leading figure in the May Uprising in Dresden (1949)

1849 – Bakunin sentenced to death and is imprisoned in Konigstein Fortress in Dresden until 1850

1850 – Extradited to Austria and imprisoned until 1851

1851- Extradited back to Russian Empire for his participation in the Czech Rebellion; imprisoned in Peter-Paul Fortress at St. Petersburg. Languishes in this prison until 1857 when he is exiled to a labor camp in Siberia

1861 – Bakunin escapes from Siberia to Japan, then travels to USA and UK

1863 – Attempts to join Polish uprising, Prussian police prevent him from reaching his destination, ends up residing in Switzerland and Italy

1864 – Founds the Italian Journal “Liberta e Giustizia” (Liberty & Justice)

1866 – Co-founds the International Brotherhood, aka: the Alliance of Revolutionary Socialists

1868 – Joins the International Working Men’s Association (the First International) which is dominated by Karl Marx and his supporters

1869 – Translates Marx’s “Das Kapital” into Russian

1870 – Actively participates in the Lyon Insurrection, the precursor to the Paris Commune of 1871

1870-71 – Writes “the Knouto-Germanic Empire” – including his most well-known book, which would, after his death, be published as “God & the State”

1871 – In the aftermath of the Paris Commune, Bakunin and the other anarchists within the International begin to criticize Karl Marx’s view of socialism as being “authoritarian;” also criticize the concept of the “dictatorship of the proletariat”

1872 – Marx orders the expulsion of Bakunin and his fellow anarchists from the International; later this same year the anarchists established their own International in St. Imier, Switzerland

1873 – Bakunin publishes his work “Statism & Anarchy”

1875 – Health declines, is hospitalized in Switzerland

1876 – At the age of 62, the “Godfather of Modern Anarchism,” Mikhail Bakunin dies on July 1.

Bakunin's Collected Works

“Freedom without socialism is privilege and injustice; socialism without freedom is slavery and brutality”

M. Bakunin

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