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(en) New title: Nestor Makhno: Anarchy's Cossack

From info@katesharpleylibrary.net
Date Sat, 19 Mar 2005 14:15:03 +0100 (CET)

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Dear A-infos, new title information of a significant new book on Makhno --- yours --- KSL
Alexandre Skirda --- Nestor Makhno: Anarchy's Cossack
The Struggle for Free Soviets in the Ukraine, 1917-1921
The phenomenal life of Nestor Makhno (1888–1934) provides the framework
for this breakneck account of the downfall of the tsarist empire and the
civil war that convulsed and bloodied Russia between 1917 and 1921.
The combatants were drawn from several camps: Budyenny's Red cavalry, the
Don and Kuban Cossacks (allied with the Whites), Ukrainian nationalists…
Against these, Makhno, a formidable and daring strategist, headed an army
of anarchist insurgents – a popular peasant movement which bore his name.
Makhno and his people were fighting for a society "without masters or
slaves, with neither rich nor poor." They acted towards that ideal by
establishing "free soviets." Unlike the soviets drained of all
significance by the dictatorship of a one-party State, the "free soviets"
became the grassroots organs of a direct democracy – a living embodiment
of the free society. However, once the Makhnovschina had beaten the Whites
of Denikin and Wrangel, they were betrayed and smashed by the Red Army.
Delving into a vast array of documentation to which few other historians
have had access, this study illuminates a revolution that started out with
the rosiest of prospects but ended up utterly confounded. Nestor Makhno:
Anarchy's Cossack brings to life this dramatic turning point in
contemporary history.

Alexandre Skirda is a French historian and student of the Russian
revolution. He has edited a selection of Nestor Makhno's writings The
Struggle Against the State and Other Essays (AK Press, 1996). He is also
the author of Facing the Enemy: a history of Anarchist organization from
Proudhon to May 1968 (AK Press, 2002). Nestor Makhno: Anarchy's Cossack is
the English translation of Nestor Makhno: le cosaque de l'Anarchie (1982,
new editions in 1985 and 1999)

Comments on the French editions:
"Full and lively... enriched by lengthy quotations from contemporary
documents, the use of rare materials published by exiled Russian
Anarchists... interviews with contemporaries of Makhno, its uniquely
detailed treatment of Makhno's life in exile and the inclusion of some
interesting photographs." The Russian Revolution and Civil War, 1917-21:
An Annotated Bibliography, Jonathan D. Smele.
"Scrupulous... solidly researched" J. Yen, "Nestor Makhno: a
mini-historiography" in The Raven 13.

Publication details: xi, 414 p. Illustrated. ISBN 1-902593-68-5 paperback £13
Published by AK Press, PO Box 12766, Edinburgh, EH8
9YE ak@akedin.demon.co.uk
and Kate Sharpley Library, BM Hurricane, London, WC1N 3XX

Features of Nestor Makhno: Anarchy's Cossack
First English-language biography of this important figure since 1982.
Draws on memoirs of other Makhnovist insurgents like Viktor Belash
Offers a critical assessment of Soviet, Anarchist and other sources on the
Makhnovist movement
Covers the historical background to the revolution in the Ukraine
Mentions of some of Makhno's appearances in fiction
The story of Galina Kuzmenko, Makhno's wife.
Contains an appendix of Makhnovist proclamations

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