"What is Anarcho-Syndicalism?" - Need a good short(ish) quote

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Chilli Sauce's picture
Chilli Sauce
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Jun 6 2010 16:17
"What is Anarcho-Syndicalism?" - Need a good short(ish) quote

Working on some literature. I need quote between 20 and 100 words and I need to be able to source it - could be a classic thinker, a pamphlet, or even something you've written yourself:)

Get cracking.

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Jun 6 2010 16:43

I have always been a fan of the Rudolf Rocker quote:

'Political rights do not originate in parliaments; they are rather forced upon them from without. And even their enactment into law has for a long time been no guarantee of their security. They do not exist because they have been legally set down on a piece of paper, but only when they have become the ingrown habit of a people, and when any attempt to impair them will meet with the violent resistance of the populace'.

Admittedly not a definition of what Anarcho-Syndicalism is, but I've always found this to be one of the most concise descriptions of the underlying sentiment behind the movement.

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Jun 6 2010 16:49

That is really good.

However, perhaps I should clarify: if possible I'm looking for a quote that describes the basic precepts and practices of A/S (direct action, solidarity, self-organization, worker control, freedom, etc).

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Jun 6 2010 17:12

I'd guess you must be able to find something good in here, here or here.
How about

Quote:
Anarchism is a revolutionary political current that declares "freedom without socialism is privilege and injustice and socialism without freedom is slavery and brutality."

Syndicalism is the workers’ movement. Deriving from the French word for Trade Unionism (Syndicalisme), it seeks to unite workers on an economic basis to fight for their interests.

Anarcho-syndicalism is anarchism applied to the workers’ movement. From small educational groups to mass revolutionary unions, libertarian organisation grows and is controlled from the bottom up.

Anarcho-syndicalists seek to organise with other militant workers who agree with their revolutionary aims and principles. Initially, this takes the form of local groups and industrial networks, but as these grow in size and influence they can begin to take on union functions such as advising fellow workers and initiating direct action like work-to-rules, strikes and occupations.

The role of anarcho-syndicalist networks and unions is not to try and recruit every worker, but to advocate and organise mass meetings of all workers involved in each struggle so that the workers involved retain control. Within these mass meetings anarcho-syndicalists argue for the principles of solidarity, direct action and self-organisation.

In this way anarcho-syndicalism is completely different to Trade Unionism, which seeks to represent workers on an economic basis, and the so-called ‘Workers Parties’ which seek to represent workers on a political basis. Instead, anarcho-syndicalism unites the political and the economic and opposes representation in favour of self-organisation.

By organising this way, workers learn to act for themselves, exercising their power without being led by union officials or political vanguards, calling into question the way society is organised and prefiguring the world we want to create, without bosses or rulers: libertarian communism.

If you can't find anything you like there, there's also anarcho-syndicalism.net.

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Jun 10 2010 19:53

Bump and grind.