It’s been a long time since I’ve updated things here, as the Corvus Editions project, along with the rest of my various projects, has been going through a long rethinking. Slowly, but surely, things are starting to come together, as I learn the lessons of the several previous phases here. I had a very short book fair season this year, with just two stops over three months, but some of the new titles are, I think, quite good.
- The Bulletin of the Bakunin Library is one of two new periodical titles, established to support major translation efforts. With the Bakunin Library project now well under way and the initial Bakunin Reader (forthcoming from PM Press) nearing completion, it made sense to put together something that can serve as a taste of what is coming, combining working drafts of some material that will appear in the printed volumes with facsimile pages, miscellaneous texts and other interesting odds and ends.
- Proudhoniana is the sister-title, sort of a bulletin for a translation project that I would love to begin once the Bakunin Library project is farther along. The plan is to publish a lot of the bibliographical work necessary to adequately plan a serious Proudhon Library, along with new translations and interpretive material. The first issue, “Feuding Brothers and Sisters,” is a bit of a hodgepodge, but the odd assortment is organized around a theme of conflict among allies, an issue never far from the minds of those of us involved in the reevaluation of Proudhon.
- The Life and Teachings of St.-Ravachol, the Violent Christ of Anarchy is a collection of writings by Ravachol, mostly from his time in prison, during his trials and prior to his execution. It is part of a larger work-in-progress engaging with the Ravachol myth and the realities of his life.
- The Contr’un zine has been an occasional compilation of material from various of my blogs and social media conversations since the beginning of the “Year without Mutualism” and the retiring of The Mutualist, which had fulfilled a similar role. A version of The Mutualist is due for relaunch soon, but Contr’un will continue to document the general trajectory of my online writing. The issues so far are: 1) Toward an Ungovernable Anarchism; 2) Self-Government and the Citizen-State, which includes the English version of a book chapter on Proudhon’s theory of the State that I published in a German-language collection; 3) The Anarchic Encounter, exploring Proudhon’s conception of the anarchist “social system;” 4) There & Back Again, which covers, among other things, some of my explorations of the recently digitized Proudhon manuscripts; and Special A) Mutualism: AMA, which contains my responses from a Reddit “ask me anything” session on “neo-Proudhonian mutualism.”
- Individualism and Socialism, and other writings on the Doctrine of Humanity combines Pierre Leroux’s important essay, in which he coined the terms individualisme and socialisme in French, with other essays exploring Leroux’s philosophy, which influenced Proudhon, Joseph Déjacque, William B. Greene and other anarchists.
- The Revolution and Other Writings includes “The Revolution,” “The Electoral Law,” and “To the Point! To Action!!” by Anselme Bellegarrige, and “Anselme Bellegarrigue,” by Joseph Noulens.
For this year’s Bay Area Anarchist Book Fair, I decided to simplify my selection, and my tabling patter, and focus on the translation side of my project. A number of the pamphlets linked below are also first installments of larger projects. Anyway, here’s what you missed if you didn’t make the show:
- Working Translations #1
“An unsystematic selection of radical writings, translated from the French.”In hardcover, Working Translations will be a series of 200+ page omnibus volumes, collecting all of my translation work as it appears. For pamphlet release, I’ll be issuing many of the longer texts separately, and assembling these “unsystematic” anthologies to collect shorter works.This issue contains works by Paul Adam, Etienne Cabet, Alfred Darimon, Peter Kropotkin, Multatuli, Claude Pelletier, Han Ryner and Voline, as well as the dramatic parody, “The Feuding Brothers.”
- Black and Red Feminism #2
Another fairly “unsystematic” assortment, including work by and about Flora Tristan, Eugénie Niboyet, Paule Mink, André Léo, etc. At this stage of the Black and Red Feminism project, my goal is to present representative material, which gives a sense of the richness of the literature, and it is indeed rich.
- In Which the Phantoms Reappear
“Two Early Anarchists, Exiles among the Exiles.” This collection brings together various texts by and about Joseph Déjacque and Ernest Coeurderoy, including Coeurderoy’s The Barrier of the Combat. It’s intended as a “teaser” for the Déjacque and Coeurderoy collections that are in the works, but also as introduction to the exile communities in which the earliest attempts to create the International took place.
- Mother Earth—An Author Index
My goal is to develop this author index into a more elaborate research guide to Mother Earth, but this first step in the process should be a real help to anyone researching the magazine.
- Emile Armand, A Little Manual of the Individualist Anarchist and other writings
There are good things in the works, as far as translation of Armand’s work is concerned, so my hope is that this collection is rapidly superseded by more extensive ones. In the meantime, here is my revised translation of the “Little Manual,” together with two essays on sexual liberty.
- Anselme Bellegarrigue, To the Point! To Action!!
Bellegarrigue attacks the renewal of governmentalism in the wake of the February 1848 revolution.
- Anselme Bellegarrigue, The Revolution
The second issue of Anarchy: A Journal of Order focused on the nature of “the Revolution,” and elaborated Bellegarrigue’s rather no-nonsense, laissez faire approach to anarchism.
- Joseph Déjacque, Down with the Bosses! and other writings
Work on the promised Dejacque anthology progresses gradually, as I untangle the critical borrowings from Charles Fourier, Pierre Leroux, Proudhon, etc., and work to track down some key texts. As a preview of things to come, here is a collection of works from Le Libertaire, including a revised translation of Down with the Bosses!, and essays on exchange and John Brown’s raid
- Jenny d’Hericourt, Proudhon
Jenny d’Hericourt’s two-volume Woman Emancipated was partially translated in the late 19th century, including her response to Proudhon, which collects the majority of their public correspondence. Work is underway to revise and complete that translation, but in the meantime you can get a taste of d’Hericourt’s sharp wit and relentless style, as she makes pretty short work of Proudhon’s anti-feminism.
- Emile Digeon, The Voice of One Hoodwinked
Digeon is not a famous name among anarchists, and his “rational anarchy” has merited even a footnote in an anarchist history in quite a long time. But in his day he was well-known as one of the prime movers in the Commune of Narbonne, which rose up in support of the Paris Commune, and his attempts to craft a practical theory of anarchism commanded at least respectful comments from a range of commentators. This first selection of Digeon’s work is focused on the nuts and bolts of governmentalism, and serves as a background for works such as “Rights and Duties in Rational Anarchy” (coming soon in translation.)
- Eliphalet Kimball, Thoughts on Natural Principles
A lost anarchist gem from mid-19th-century America. Kimball’s collected writings explain everything from how to bake a healthy loaf of bread to how to have a free society, and the explanations hang together in a fascinating way, all based on a small number of anarchy-friendly “natural principles.” There are few works in the anarchist literature more likely to make you laugh out loud, but there’s also plenty here to encourage serious reflection.
- Dyer Lum, Buddhism Notwithstanding, and other writings from “The Index”
Lum was nothing if not eclectic in his interests, and this collection assembles most of his writings within the “free religionist” milieu (which is also where Benjamin R. Tucker published some of his first essays and translations.)
- P.-J. Proudhon, The Celebration of Sunday
Proudhon’s first major work provides important insights into all that would follow. A couple of offhand, but extremely suggestive comments about property and theft made the work of translation all worthwhile, and I think the text will also reward any readers who want to understand Proudhon’s work in its totality.
- P.-J. Proudhon, Explanations Presented to the Public Minister on the Right of Property
Every one of Proudhon’s writings on property adds something important to our understanding of the question, and this early clarification of his position contains a number of suggestive, and sometimes startling, twists on the nature of Proudhon’s project and the meaning of “property is theft.”
- P.-J. Proudhon, The Philosophy of Progress
I’ve come to think of The Philosophy of Progress as the key to understanding Proudhon’s other works. It bears reading and rereading, if we want to get a handle on the basic logic of Proudhon’s analysis.
- P.-J. Proudhon, Toast to the Revolution
My first Proudhon translation remains one of my favorite of his short works. And this examination of the nature of “the Revolution” makes a nice compare-and-contrast pair the Bellegarrigue’s essay linked above.
I should have a comparable selection of new material ready for the summer fairs, with even more translations and some new collections of material pulled together from the old Corvus Editions catalog.
Coming Soon! A new Corvus Editions website!