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Mark Bray on Anarchist Revolution In Spain & Lessons for Today

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In this episode of the It’s Going Down podcast, we speak again with historian Mark Bray about the anarchist movement in Spain as well as the Spanish Civil War and Revolution that broke out in 1936 against a fascist coup. We discuss how the movement grew, in all its complexities, and Bray describes the discussions and tensions over tactics and methods of struggle contemporary anarchists with find many similarities with. We then discuss what was achieved during the period of the revolution, from the taking over of industry in some cities, to the communization of land and agriculture in rural areas, to attacks on patriarchy and class society within everyday life.

We also discuss the betrayal of both the revolution and the antifascist resistance to Franco, not only by the major world powers in the face of a fascist coup by general Franco which was supported by Hitler and Mussolini, but also by the Stalinist forces who destroyed the revolution and literally attacked the anarchists.

We also talk about the various groups, tendencies, and formations that existed throughout the Spanish anarchist movement, from the labor union the CNT, the insurrectionary anarchist federation, the FAI, the Libertarian Youth movement, the role of anarchist infrastructure and press, and the anarcha-feminist group, Mujeres Libres.

Beyond just a blow by blow of the revolution, we spend a lot of our time talking about how the Spanish anarchists organized and built a counter-society that existed and in many cases still does, for generations.

More Info: Mark Bray on Twitter, Anarchism in the City, The Anarchist Collectives