Council of Publishing and Cultural Activities

Submitted by Juan Conatz on December 22, 2010

We have already mentioned in a previous chapter the scarcity of raw material for an adequate supply of paper, and have suggested the means of remedying the default through reforestation. In 1928, discounting newspapers and magazines, there were published 2,830 books and 3,578 pamphlets and brochures.

The organization of the paper factories could include the preparation of pastes and pulp. The printers would form a syndicate of graphic arts. In the same way every nucleus of writers, journalists and scientists would form its respective council. Altogether they would constitute the syndicate of writers and journalists.

Together with the council of transportation, communication and credit and exchange, the council of the publishing industries belongs also to the kind of social nervous system which combines the diverse parts of the entire social organism. The mission of journalists and editors in the new economy is of a special significance. Science, literature, art, and the service of rendering information will be available in their purest form to the whole of the community. There will be no bastard interest to exploit publications for private lucre. The light will come to all as freely and purely as the sun, without guise of caste and without the taint of factions.

We are not the first to suppose that the role of public instruction in the capitalist regime fulfils much more the necessity in modern life for workers who can read, write, and add, than the sincere desire for culture and progress for the people themselves. In any event, culture under capitalism attains its end through perversion and falsification in the interest of the dominating class. The public schools, the university, the cinema, the theatre, sports, etc., are all used as means towards providing a legal, moral and material foundation for the privileges of a few and the slavery of the vast majority.

"Capital" says Ferdinand Fried, "places so low an esteem on science that it considers universities only as professional schools for the creation of better forces." 1

The new economy, representing the contribution and effort of all, must develop a true culture without any other end than that of progress and the elevation of man to a higher standard. Culture, properly speaking, might not be included in the economic structure of the new order; but our free society which considers not merely the worker, but man, is not nourished by bread alone but by knowledge.

The organism of culture related closely to all the other organisms of production and distribution is constituted also as an organic entity, from the school with its administrative council made up of teachers, parents and pupils, up to the syndicate of teachers and local council formed by the various syndicates. The universities, however, will have a different structure. For example, the faculty of chemistry would pass over to the council of the chemical industries, and the faculties of engineering would depend on their respective branch council, and so forth.

Theatres operated today exclusively for private profit will in the future be instruments of culture. Cinemas, sports, etc., will all be integrated in the culture council and for the first time fulfil their real purpose. In the same way, art, today a privilege of select and rich minorities, will be available to all and ennoble and beautify the lives of everybody capable of appreciating it. Not only will illiteracy be exiled but every child will be equipped with real adequate knowledge and a technical preparation for industry and agriculture.

The revolution needs capable workers, peasants with initiative, men of solid preparation, which the new school and research faculties will have as its special mission to supply. Spain will then be in a position to fulfil the most romantic hopes of its most exalted patriots.

Capitalism cannot sustain the present apparatus of public education. Its largest budget must be reserved for public order, the army and the navy. The schoolteacher is a poor, forgotten functionary living in misery. The new economy needs thousands of new schools, thousands of new teachers, and hundreds of specialised schools of trades and agriculture.

  • 1"The End of Capitalism"; ed. Grassei, Pans, p. 122.