The Platform


The platform or platformism is a label used by anarchists who argue that in order to be effective we need to form organisations that agree theoretical and tactical unity; practise collective action and discipline and use federalism as the organisation structure on which they build. This ideas was first clearly expressed in a document known as the Organisational Platform of the Libertarian Communists drawn up in 1926.

The
Anarchist Platform

The Anarchist Platform is an international email list for anarchist who agree with the points it outlines (below) and who are willing to work locally for/ to build organisations in agreement with these points. It currently has members on all the world continents and has been translated into many languages.

Essentially it is a list for anarchists who see a need for organised anarchist organisations that seek to develop

  • Ideological Unity
  • Tactical Unity
  • Collective Action and Discipline
  • Federalism

If you are new to anarchism or new to the idea of the Platform and are interested in finding out more you should join the AP_discuss list. rather then the Anarchist Platform list. This list is allows for a higher volume of traffic and so is also more suitable if you are trying to find other platformists near you.

[The Anarchist Platform as a PDF file, If you are actually looking for a leaflet that explains what anarchism is, we recommend What is Anarchism instead of this text which is a lot more specialised ]


We invite you to look at the 'Anarchist Platform' points below and if you agree with them to subscribe to our international anarchist mailing list Anarchist_Platform. If you find you don't agree with them all but are in partial agreement we invite you to subscribe to AP_discuss instead for ongoing discussion around them.

The 'Anarchist Platform' points are below followed by instructions on how to subscribe to these lists, there is also a protocol designed to keep traffic on the list to a minimum

It is assumed that anyone joining the list already understands and agrees with anarchism - the list is not intended as an educational list for newcomers to anarchism. If you are new to anarchism we suggest you first join AP_discuss (below) and start reading about Anarchism. We recommend that you look at What is anarchism? and Thinking about anarchism and ask on AP_discuss about any questions that you have after reading these texts.

The Anarchist Platform list is also not intended as a general discussion list for anarchists about anarchism. If this is what you are interested in we recommend the Organise list and to a lesser extent AP_discuss.

If you have not read the documents linked to in the Anarchist Platform text it is essential to do so before you ask to join the list. They are quite controversal in the history of the anarchist movement, you can ask questions about them on AP discuss.


The text below also available in

[In German][In Dutch][In French] In Hebrew] [In Italian]
[In Spanish][In Serbo-Croatian] [In Macedonian ] [In Finnish]
[In Portuguese] [In Russian] [In Slovenian] [In Turkish][In Greek ]
[In Polish]

 

[Can you translate it and email it to us?]


Preamble:

The points of the anarchist platform arose from discussion between the Irish Workers Solidarity Movement and the South African Workers Solidarity Federation (which has now dissolved). Because of this background the points assume a common understanding of what anarchism is. Probably the book "Anarchism" by Daniel Guerin contains the best detailed explanation of anarchist history and theory from this perspective.

After the dissolution of the WSF the WSM decided to use the points agreed to launch the Anarchist-Platform email list. The purpose of the list is to bring together anarchists who agree with the points both for the exchange of information but also in the hope that they will meet up with others on the list in their geographical region and engage in common work. As such list members are expected to actively pursue this agenda and not simply lurk (a common feature of other lists).

------ Anarchist Platform -----

We identify ourselves as anarchists and with the 'Platformist' tradition within anarchism which includes groups and publications such as "The Organisational Platform of the Libertarian Communists" , the "Friends of Durruti" and the "Manifesto of Libertarian Communism". We broadly identify with the organisational practise argued for by this tradition but not necessarily everything else they did or said. That is it is a starting point for our politics and not an end point

The core ideas of this tradition that we identify with are the need for anarchist organisations that seek to develop

  • Ideological Unity
  • Tactical Unity
  • Collective Action and Discipline
  • Federalism

Anarchism will be created by the class struggle between the vast majority of society (the working class) and the tiny minority that currently rule. A successful revolution will require that anarchist ideas become the leading ideas within the working class. This will not happen spontaneously. Our role is to make anarchist ideas the leading ideas or as it is sometimes expressed to become a 'leadership of ideas'.

We work within the trade unions as the major focus of our activity where this is a possibility. We therefore reject views that dismiss activity in the unions. Within them we fight for the democratic structures typical of anarcho - syndicalist unions like the 1930's CNT. However the unions no matter how revolutionary cannot replace the need for anarchist political organisation(s).

We also see it as vital to work in struggles that happen outside the unions/workplace. These include struggles against particular oppressions, imperialism and indeed the struggles of the working class for a decent place and environment in which to live. Our general approach to these, like our approach to the unions is to involve ourselves wherever the greatest number are found and within this movement to promote anarchist methods of organisation involving direct democracy.

We actively oppose all manifestation of prejudice within the workers movement and identify working alongside those struggling against racism, sexism, [religious] sectarianism and homophobia as a priority. We see the success of a revolution and the success of the elimination of these oppressions after the revolution being determined by the building of such struggles in the pre- revolutionary period.

We oppose imperialism but put forward anarchism as an alternative goal to nationalism. We defend grass root anti-imperialist movements while arguing for an anarchist rather then nationalist strategy.

We identify a need for anarchist organisations who agree with these principles to federate on an international basis. However we believe the degree of federation possible and the amount of effort put into it must be determined on success at building national organisations capable of making such international work a reality rather then a matter of slogans.


Joining Anarchist Platform

To join this list please email us at strugglesite AT nospam.eircom.net
(The email address is the bits in red with a @ for the AT)
. Your email should have the subject 'Anarchist Platform' and should include all of the following

1. A statement that you agree with the points and want to subscribe to the list.

2. A short introduction that can be posted to the list saying where your from and what if any organisations your involved with.

3. Specifiy whether you want to subscribe to the list or the digest. The digest means you only get one mail every three days containing all that periods posting so it may be better for you if you have limited email access

If you can it would also be a good idea to subscribe to the list below

AP_discuss

A list for discussing the Anarchist Platfrom and related aspects of anarchism. If your new to anarchism or unsure of aspects of the Platform please join this list first and ask questions/ make comments there. Traffic on this list is higher so it is also more suitable for locating others.

To join email AP_discuss-subscribe@yahoogroups.com . When you have subscribed post a short introduction message indicating where you disagree with the 'Anarchist Platform', you can do this by mailing ap_discuss@yahoogroups.com

Further information

In historical terms the platformist tradition starts with The Organisational Platform of the Libertarian Communists, includes the Friends of Durruti grouping of CNT members during the Spanish revolution who wrote Towards a fresh revolution. In the post war period many include documents like the Manifesto of Libertarian Communism.

Different platformists would have different amount of agreement and disagreement with each of these documents - some for instance have strong reservations about including the manifesto at all. Some would also argue that some of Bakunins writings on revolutionary organisation can also be included.

Today there are Anarchist groups connected with the Platform in many countries around the world and individuals hoping to join/form such groups in most others. The Anarchist Platform list opposite includes many of these groups and individuals.

As well as the articles and links here NEFAC also maintain a useful page 'Anarchism And The Platformist Tradition'


If you are new to anarchism or new to the idea of the Platform and are interested in finding out more you should join the AP_discuss list.

The relevance of the Platform today

The Errico Malatesta and Nestor Makhno exchange on the Platform

Exchange with the synthesists

  • Reply To The Platform
    The synthesist response to Dielo Trouda's 'Organizational Platform of Libertarian Communists'. First published in French (Paris 1927)by Sobol, Schwartz, Steimer, Voline, Lia, Roman, Ervantian, Fleshin
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