Death of Malatesta

by Thomas Henry Keell

Freedom Bulletin, No. 15, December 1932.

The Anarchist movement has united in mourning the death of one of its outstanding fighters and thinkers. For fifty years he was an active propagandist, and though he produced no great works on Anarchism his articles and pamphlets have been printed in almost every modern language. He combined action with theory and his years of imprisonment proved how much his influence was feared by all upholders of privilege and power.

Malatesta lived for a number of years in London and we met on many occasions at meetings, at Freedom office, or at his home. He impressed me as a frank and loveable man, always willing to help us. On one occasion he spent an entire day overhauling our printing machine. If he were asked to write an article he would at first refuse, saying we should get English comrades to write for an English paper; but in the end he usually agreed. He wrote in very good French and complained that translators sometimes distorted his meaning. At last we found a really good translator for one of his articles, and when we took the translation to him and read it, his eyes twinkled as he said it really was his article, not the translator’s. Continue reading “Death of Malatesta”

Pro-Government Anarchists

Freedom, April 1916

A manifesto has just appeared, signed by Kropotkin, Grave, Malato, and a dozen other old comrades, in which, echoing the supporters of the Entente Governments who are demanding a fight to the finish and the crushing of Germany, they take their stand against any idea of “premature peace”.

The capitalist Press publishes, with natural satisfaction, extracts from the manifesto, and announces it as the work of “leaders of the International Anarchist Movement.”

Anarchists, almost all of whom have remained faithful to their convictions, owe it to themselves to protest against this attempt to implicate Anarchism in the continuance of a ferocious slaughter that has never held promise of any benefit to the cause of Justice and Liberty, and which now shows itself to be absolutely barren and resultless even from the standpoint of the rulers on either side. Continue reading “Pro-Government Anarchists”

Anarchists Have Forgotten Their Principles

Freedom, November 1914

At the risk of passing as a simpleton, I confess that I would never have believed it possible that Socialists — even Social Democrats — would applaud and voluntarily take part, either on the side of the Germans or on the Allies, in a war like the one that is at present devastating Europe. But what is there to say when the same is done by Anarchists — not numerous, it is true, but having amongst them comrades whom we love and respect most?

It is said that the present situation shows the bankruptcy of “our formulas” — i.e., of our principles — and that it will be necessary to revise them.

Generally speaking, every formula must be revised whenever it shows itself insufficient when coming into contact with fact; but it is not the case to-day, when the bankruptcy is not derived from the shortcoming of our formulas, but from the fact that these have been forgotten and betrayed.

Let us return to our principles. Continue reading “Anarchists Have Forgotten Their Principles”

The Anarchist Revolution: Polemical Articles 1924-1931, Vernon Richards (ed.), Freedom Press

PDF of The Anarchist Revolution: Polemical Articles 1924-1931, Vernon Richards (ed.), Freedom Press



  • Comments on the Article ‘Science and Anarchy’

  • Note on Hz’s article ‘Science and Anarchy’

  • Pseudo-Scientific Aberrations

  • Further Thoughts on Science and Anarchy


  • Anarchy and Violence

  • Revolutionary Terror

  • Let’s Demolish – and then?

  • Postscript to Let’s Demolish – and then?



See also the Writings page


Malatesta: Life and Ideas, Vernon Richards (ed.), Freedom Press

PDF of Malatesta: Life and Ideas, Vernon Richards (ed.), Freedom Press


  • Editor’s Foreword

Part One


1. Anarchist Schools of Thought

2. Anarchist-Communism

3. Anarchism and Science

4. Anarchism and Freedom

5. Anarchism and Violence

6. Attentats


7. Ends and Means

8. Majorities and Minorities

9. Mutual Aid

10. Reformism

11. Organisation


12. Production and Distribution

13. The Land

14. Money and Banks

15. Property

16. Crime and Punishment


17. Anarchists and the Working Class Movements

18. The Occupation of the Factories

19. Workers and Intellectuals

20. Anarchism, Socialism and Communism

21. Anarchists and the Limits of Political Co-Existence


22. The Anarchist Revolution

23. The Insurrection

24. Expropriation

25. Defence of the Revolution


26. Anarchist Propaganda

27. An Anarchist Programme

Part Two

  • Notes for a Biography (V.R.)
  • Source Notes


I. Anarchists have forgotten their Principles (E.M. 1914)

II. Pro-Government Anarchists (E.M. 1916)

III. Fact and Fiction on the Shooting Incident in West Hoboken in 1899 (V.R.)

IV. Peter Kropotkin: Recollections and Criticisms of an Old Friend (E.M. 1931)

Part Three

  • Malatesta’s Relevance for Anarchists Today: An Assessment (V.R.)

Source: Vernon Richards (ed.), Malatesta: Life and Ideas, Freedom Press 1966.