David Goodway’s Anarchist Seeds Beneath the Snow: Left-Libertarian Thought and British Writers from William Morris to Colin Ward

Review by Peter Faulkner:

This well informed and clearly written book has two main aims: to tell the reader about the importance and extent of the tradition of anarchist or left-libertarian writing in Britain; and to argue for the urgent relevance today of that tradition of political thought, particularly in its pacifist and environmentalist forms. The latter aim is necessarily the more difficult to fulfil, since it may well come up against the reader’s existing political prejudices or commitments; and I will consider it later. But in that it provides a great deal of information in a form that is both accessible and suggestive of the importance of the tradition discussed, the book is undoubtedly successful. Eight writers classified by Goodway as anarchists are discussed at length, in historical order as follows: Edward Carpenter, Oscar Wilde, John Cowper Powys, Herbert Read, Aldous Huxley, Alex Comfort, Christopher Pallis and Colin Ward. In addition, Goodway offers thoughtful readings here of three other writers broadly sympathetic to the anarchist tradition, but with more reservations about it: William Morris, George Orwell and E. P. Thompson. Each writer is carefully placed in his historical context: Morris in that of late-Victorian radicalism; Orwell that of Spain and the Civil War; and Thompson in that of nuclear disarmament and the ‘New Left’.

From Anarchist Librarian’s Web:

Favorite Anarchist/Libertarian Novels 1.0 – July 1998 – This list compiled from discussions held on the anarchy-list in July 1998:

In no particular (dis)order:

  • Four Ways to Forgiveness by Ursula Le Guin
  • Always Coming Home by Ursula Le Guin
  • The Dispossessed by Ursula Le Guin
  • He, She and It by Marge Piercy
  • Woman on Edge of Time by Marge Piercy
  • The Kin of Ata Are Waiting for You by Dorothy Bryant
  • The City, Not Long After by Pat Murphy
  • Illicit Passage by Alice Nunn
  • A Door Into Ocean by Joan Slonczewski
  • Anarchist Farm by Jane Doe
  • Animal Farm by George Orwell
  • 1984 by George Orwell
  • The Death Ship by B. Traven
  • The Jungle Novels by B. Traven
  • Antarctica by Kim Stanley Robinson
  • The Mars Trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson
  • Voyage from Yesteryear by James P. Hogan
  • The Land Leviathan by Michael Moorcock
  • A Nomad of the Time Streams by Michael MOORCOCK
  • Islands in the Net by Bruce Sterling
  • Excession by Iain M. Banks
  • The Player of Games by Iain M. Banks
  • Complicity by Iain M. Banks
  • Consider Phlebas by Iain M. Banks
  • The State Of The Art by Iain M. Banks
  • Use Of Weapons by Iain M. Banks
  • A.D. by Saab Lofton
  • Last Days of Christ the Vampire by J.G. Eccarius
  • News From Nowhere by William Morris
  • The Journal of Albion Moonlight by Kenneth Patchen
  • Merry Men by Carolyn Chute
  • De Zwarte Hand by Louis Paul BOON (The Black Hand : anarchist revolt in industrial Belgium in the 19th century) (dutch)
  • The Monkeywrench Gang by Edward Abbey
  • The Secret Agent by Joseph CONRAD
  • Caleb Williams by William GODWIN
  • Passionate Journay (a novel told in 165 woodcuts) by Frans MASEREEL
  • End Time (notes on the apocalypse) by G.A. MATIASZ
  • The Sharks by Jens Bjoernboe
  • A Dream of John Ball by William MORRIS
  • Pilgrims of Hope by William MORRIS
  • No pasaran by PATSY (french krimi)
  • Ne comptez pas sur nous by Daniel de ROULET : (swiss hackerkrimi)
  • Dream World by Kent WINSLOW
  • Yertle the Turtle by Dr. Seuss
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