Long review: The works of Marie Louise Berneri

In this long-read review Raymond S Solomon reflects on the life of a key figure at Freedom Press in the 1930s-40s, Marie Louise Berneri, analysing her peers, philosophical and historic setting and impact through two of her works.


Books reviewed

Journey Through Utopia.
1949 
Routledge and Kegan Paul.

Neither East Nor West: Selected Writing 1939-1948.
updated 1988 edition  
Freedom Press.


Marie Louise Berneri, Vernon Richards and Freedom Press

Marie Louise Berneri (1918-1949) and her husband Vernon Richards were among those most responsible for the revival of anarchism in Britain, and as part of that revival, the revival of the newspaper Freedom and of Freedom Press’ publishing and book-selling enterprise. During the Spanish Revolution Freedom was published as Spain and the World, and during the Second World War, and a while after that, as War Commentary. Marie met Vernon through her father Camillo Berneri. Friends and comrades, English born ethnic Italian Vernon Richards, and Italian Camillo Berneri jointly published a bilingual Italian-English anti-Mussolini newspaper Italia Libera/Free Italy.

Camillo Berneri (right) with fellow Italian fighters in the Spanish Civil War

As a writer, a psychologist, editor, and an activist, she conveyed a libertarian message — libertarian in its original meaning. That meaning is the meaning that anarchists attached to it when they chose that label, instead of the one that was used to slander and libel Anarchists, and gave a false, but widespread association of violence. Anarchists are among the least violent people I’ve known. They are also among the most ethical people I’ve known. Anarchists are part of a broader libertarian tradition. The libertarian vision, which is not uniform, was advocated and practiced by many people including John Milton, William Godwin, Josiah Warren, Roger Baldwin, Emma Goldman, Thomas Pain, Thomas Jefferson, and Robert Owen. It is not the dog-eat-dog capitalism advocated by some who call themselves “libertarians.”   

Marie studied psychology in The Sorbonne; and her school of psychology was Reichian. She believed in sexual liberation and sexual expression, but was against the exploitation of, and ill-treatment of women, whether in a sexual or any other way. In her politics she opposed state oppression, and one of the ultimate violations of human rights—war. She was for people helping one another, in groups and as individuals. The highest ideal of this help and mutual aid would be in a libertarian utopia.

Journey Through Utopia

In Journey Through Utopia, Marie Louise Berneri makes the point that at the times she was writing people settled for second best, compromise, and the lesser evil.  She discussed Utopias from Plato’s Republic through “The Big Rock Candy Mountain”—an American hobo song.  Under the title of “A TRAMP’S UTOPIA” Berneri quotes:

One evenin’ as the sun went down
And the jungle fire was burnin’
Down the tract came a hobo hikin
And said: ‘Boys, I’m not turnin’
I’m headed for a land that’s far away
Besides the crystal fountains,
So come with me, we’ll all go see
The Big Rock Candy Mountains.

 Marie Louise Berneri said:

 “The anonymous literature of all underprivileged in all ages has contained songs and fables of a society without hunger and oppression. The slaves of the ancient world looked back to a legendry Golden Age of equality, and the Nineteenth-century America placed in a future life their dreams of a respite from incessant toil from which they could not hope in this one. Much of the Utopian folklore is of great beauty and poignancy, but there is nothing other-worldly in the amusing songs of  the American ‘hoboes,’ or migratory workers of this century. [i.e. the twentieth century] The hobo is not concerned with governments or juridical systems—he knows what he wants in his shamelessly materialistic ‘ideal commonwealth.’”

MARGINAL PEOPLE

Authors who wrote about marginal people in fiction, drama, sociology, verse, diaries, and memoirs includeEugene O’Neill (The Iceman Cometh, The Hairy Ape), B. Traven (The Death Ship, The Treasure of Sierra Madre, all ofThe Jungle Books), Upton Sinclair (The Jungle, King Coal), John Steinbeck (Of Mice and Men, The Grapes of Wrath), George Orwell (Down and Out in Paris and London, A Clergyman’s Daughter, “A Hanging,” The Road to Wigan Pier, “The Road to Wigan Pier Diary,”  “How the Poor Die,” “Hop-Picking”), Robert Frost (“Death of a Hired Man”),Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. (Slaughterhouse-Five: Or the Children’s Crusade), Emma Lazarus (“The New Colossus”), Mark Twain (Adventures of Huckleberry Finn), Michael Harrington (The Other America), Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (“The Jewish Cemetery at Newport,”), Anna Frank (Diary of a Young Girl), Jack London (People of the Abyss, “The Sea Wolf”), Norman Mailer (The Naked and the Dead, “The White Negro”), Edith Saposnik Kaplan (Russian Nightmares-American Dreams, “A Child’s Witness to Genocide”), Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (The Gulag Archipelago, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich),  Lincoln Stephens (The Shame of the Cities), Ralph Ellison (Invisible Man), Richard Wright (Black Boy), Erskine Caldwell (Tobacco Road, God’s Little Acre), Langston Hughes (Montage of a Dream Deferred, “A Dream Deferred”), Hubert Selby Jr. (Last Exit to Brooklyn), and Eric Hoffer (in segments of The True Believer andin his writings about skid row people, and fellow migratory farm worker in other books and articles of his.)

 EMMA LAZARU’S WELCOMES TO THE FORSAKEN

The poet Emma Lazarus paid tribute to the common people, especially the desperately poor and marginal people seeking refuge in America. In her 1883 poem “The New Colossus” She wrote:

“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

The above verse, with the rest of that poem, was inscribed on the Statue of Liberty. These words welcomed the poor Eastern Europeans, Italians, Greek, Jewish and other immigrants. But immigration was curtailed by new American enacted during the 1920s, which were subsequently changed in the 1960s and after.

REFLECTION ON AFRICAN-AMERICAN ASPIRATIONS AND ACTIVITIES

African-American spirituals often depicted a religious utopia. In slave songs there was often double meaning. Canaan meant Canada, where enslaved black people could get freedom. African-American songs often expressed the agony and hopes of enslaved Black people, and later, of poor and persecuted African-Americans, after emancipation.  Abraham Lincoln had realistic utopian ideas.  Towards the end of The American Civil War he created a program to give formerly enslaved Black people 40 acres of land and a mule, to help give many formerly enslaved African-Americans self-sufficiency. There were also reconstruction programs for poor white people. There were other programs.

 One of the things that gave hope to African-Americans was The Great Migration, of c. 1915 through c. 1960, from the American South to the North, Middle West, and Far West of the United States. One of the results of this Great Migration was the Harlem Renaissance of c.1918 through c. 1938. It was a renaissance in art, music, poetry, fiction, and biographical and historical writings, and African-American pride.

 The accomplishments of African-Americans in the arts, literature, sciences, the military, religion, and oral literature are largely unknown. This includes African-American utopianism. This is beginning to change. African-American topics have not traditionally received comprehensive coverage in mainstream academia.   The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture is still sorting out tons of materials. The National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington D.C. shows a great amount very important African-American history that has been missed in history books and history courses.

REICHIAN PSYCHOLOGIST 

 As a Reichian psychologist Marie Louisa Berneri views differed from much of mainstream psychology. Anyone who would have been in therapy with Marie Louisa would have been fortunate. The Reichian school of thought was in keeping with all her libertarian ideas and ideals.  A.E. Neill, founder and longtime director of Summerhill School was greatly influenced by Reichian psychology.  

UTOPIES IN FACT, FICTION, AND AMERICAN UTOPIANISM 

Utopians are abundant in fiction, religious traditions, and human attempts.  One utopia with full sexual liberation and the blending of love and sex was the Garden of Eden. But Eva and Adam broke the one rule, and so, to use a mixed metaphor, opened a Pandora’s Box.  But fifteenth century libertarian Protestant John Milton wrote about the loss and regaining of paradise.    Bellamy’s Looking Backwards inspired Utopian societies, clubs, and experiments throughout the United States. But these Bellamy societies did not use the word socialist. Radical historian Howard Zinn noted that before World War One, many socialists were elected to public offices in the United States, and that there were socialist newspapers in Texas, Oklahoma, Alabama, and Arkansas. The Industrial Workers of the World was growing before the United States entered World War One. In the U.S. the war (WWI) was an opportunity to stifle the American socialist movement, and almost destroy the IWW in American. But suppressed movements sometimes re-awaken. Consider the crowds that socialist Bernie Sanders got when he recently (2015/16) ran for President.  

Utopianism has a long history in the United States. Socialist Upton Sinclair, using money earned from The Jungle, established a Utopian colony that was destroyed by a fire. Historian Samuel Eliot Morrison noted that “Robert Owen in 1845 summoned a ‘World Convention to Emancipate the Human race from Ignorance, Poverty, Division, Sin, and Misery.’” Disease could have been included. Millions of people now devote themselves to fighting disease. Josiah Warren, whom historian Samuel Elliot Morrison and others called, “the first American anarchist” attempted to create Utopian colony, which did not succeed. He is believed to have published what was the first anarchist newspaper, Peaceful Revolutionist.  Samuel Elliot Morrison observed that Warren built his own printing press and made his own printing plates. The Transcendentalists were Utopians of a type. 

The range of Journey Through Utopia goes from ancient Greece to and modern times.  Berneri’s Utopiabook includes Plato, Thomas More, Bacon, Bellamy, H.G. Wells, and Aldous Huxley.  

In Sr. Thomas More’s Utopia (which book coined the term) atheists were tolerated, but suspect because they did not fear being denied the afterlife, or punishment after death. But still he painted an alternate society, which included freedom of religion.  Of course Thomas More was executed for sticking to his religious beliefs. He is a hero for many Catholics, and for many liberty loving people, and for many who want to build a better world.

Peter Kropotkin’s Fields, Factories, and Workshops aimed at setting up a possible universal utopia on our earth. His The Conquest of Bread had the same aim. Kropotkin referred to Robert Owen’s utopian community. In The Jungle Upton Sinclair cited Kropotkin’s Fields, Factories and Workshops.  

In The Ascent of Science Brian Silver noted that Thomas Jefferson considered John Lock, Isaac Newton, and Francis Bacon the three greatest people who lived. Lock wrote about the social contract (a concept that Peter Kropotkin believed was a fiction). The reasons for Isaac Newton being held in such esteem are obvious. Bacon originated the scientific method, and strongly and effectively promoted the idea that science should be further human well-being. In Bacon’s Utopia scientists would not tell of all their scientific findings to the governing class. Similarly in the 1930s many scientists decided to stop publishing their findings on nuclear research. If only that effort at secrecy had been successful! Nuclear weapons physics is like the “tree of knowledge of good and evil.”  As Richard Carter said, our knowledge outstripped our wisdom—at least in that area.    

MARIA LOUISA BERNERI’S SUFFERINGS

How did this well-read, idealistic activist, writer, with such a pure heart begin life? How did she become a fighter for freedom, economic justice and utopian visions of society? Part of the answer may come from her suffering and the injustices she saw and knew about, and from her reading.

At age four Maria saw her father arrested by Mussolini’s police. They were harassed by Italian fascist thugs.  Marie’s family members became refugees in France, lacking papers, luggage, and connections; and they were harassment by the French police.  In Britain they finally found meaningful freedom. England had long given refuge to political refugees.   

NEW TOTALITARIANISM AND NEW WARS OUT OF THE ASHES OF THE OLD 

The comrades in the Freedom Press group opposed both sides during The Second World War. Marie Louisa Berneri felt that fascism and Nazism should be fought by workers revolution, rather than nation states, that contained the seeds of future wars and new totalitarianism.  If she had lived longer, Maria Louisa Berneri could have pointed out the Cuban Missile Crisis was ultimately stemmed from the Second World War, which stemmed from the First World War. Anarchist Esther Dolgoff pointed out that during  the Cuban Missile Crisis, that two men could have determined the fate of the world—President Kennedy of the United States and Premier Khrushchev of the Soviet Union. This is the ultimate of the state.

OTHER ANARCHISTS AND THE AIMS OF WORLD WAR TWO UNFULFILLED

Spanish anarchist refugees (and other Spanish Republican refugees) in France, and many other anarchists supported the allies. Their numbers included Sam Dolgoff and Rudolf Rocker. Concerning my parents, Clara Freedman Solomon and Sidney Solomon, historian of Anarchism Paul Avrich wrote in Anarchist Voices:

“In 1941 as Clara Fredericks and S. Morrison, they published two numbers of a mimeographed paper called Libertarian Views, which despite criticism from their pacifist comrades, they defended the war against fascism.”

In an article, in the February 1941 edition of Libertarian Views, titled “Hitler Must be Stopped,” my father, Sidney Solomon, writing as S. Morrison said:

“The issue must be faced…either the fascist strangle-hold is broken or we can put off all thoughts of being able to struggle for the realization of our aspirations for many generations.”

Clara Freedman Solomon and Sidney Solomon, Anarchists who supported the Spanish Loyalists, and the United States’ and Britain’s anti-Nazi War during The Second World War. Members of the Vanguard group, they worked on the publications Vanguard and Spanish Revolution; and were instrumental in establishing The Libertarian Book Club. Clara and Sidney were also involved in Holocaust Rescue activities. Clara was a pianist, piano teacher, and once a music therapist. Sidney worked as a book designer and art director. As an avocation Sidney was a prolific painter, usually in bright colors.

Among the close “pacifist comrades” my parents differed with on support of the Second World War were many good friends, including the couple Audrey Goodfriend and David Koven. Shortly after the Second World War, Dave and Audrey moved from New York City to California where they put into practice their anarchism by co-founding Weldon, a Feffer type school. They played a leading role in opposing the Vietnam War. They, in a real sense helped to build a utopian situation. Dave had been involved in anti-Nazi activities such as beating up Nazis. (See Anarchist Voices by Paul Avrich.) Audrey was a strong supporter of the Spanish Loyalists—a vital anti-fascist activity. Dave felt (Again, see Avrich, Anarchist Voices) too many anarchist had very upward mobility ambition for their children. Audrey believes that anarchism can be pluralistic and include religious people. Walden, the school that Audrey and Dave founded, with three other families, was the personal practice of anarchism, as Dave Koven pointed out in his interview with Paul Avrich, published in Anarchist Voices. It was also a form of Utopianism. Dave related in Anarchist Voices (Avrich) that anarchism is people working together.

The horrors of a world ruled by Nazi Germany, militaristic  Japan, and fascist Italy was stopped—but as shown by Berneri, with some references in this review, the aftermath of World War Two did not live up to the ideals expressed in the Atlantic Charter. These ideals in this document issued by Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Winston Churchill talked about no territorial changes without the consent of the people, people being able to choose their own government, no territorial imperialism by the signing parties, and freedom of navigation in the seas and air, and other ideals. Instead we have a beset with nuclear weapons, terrorism, terrible wars like the current one in Syria (as I write), malignant right-wing nationalism sweeping across Europe, workers getting more oppressed because of globalization, which is not true free trade,  and neo-colonialism. And in 1962 the world almost came to a full-scale nuclear war—perhaps pacifists, including anarcho-pacifists have some vital points to teach the world. Even George Orwell, in his essay “Reflections on Gandhi,” said that there is a good possibility that non-violence could be the way out to avoid nuclear war.

GEORGE ORWELL’S PERSPECTIVE, AND OTHER POSSIBILITIES FOR A BETTER WORLD

In “Burnham’s View of the Contemporary World Struggle” George Orwell wrote:

“But the situation might have been different if the European peoples could have grasped the nature of Fascism about five years earlier. In that case the war, if it happened at all, might have been a different kind of war, fought under different leaders for different ends,” and with millions upon millions less lives lost, and with a much better world resulting from its outcome.

Although Orwell differed with Vernon Richards and Maria Louisa Berneri, he was close friends with them. Orwell wrote to Richards about the Maria Louisa Berneri memorial issue of Freedom.

Neither East Nor West: Grievous faults of the Allies

In Neither East Nor West (a selection of her writings from War Commentary, and Freedom published posthumously) she could point out the great inconsistencies of Allied governments during and after the Second World War. This included an anti-labor policy in liberated Italy. The Italian people were her heroes for resistance to Mussolini, and their labor activism in liberated Italy. Allied colonial policies especially disgusted her. Britain and the United States supported the French re-conquest of Indo-China, while opposing France’s similar attempts at re-colonialization of Syria and Lebanon. Nehru had spent four years in jail. Indonesia was under siege. Because of starvation in liberated Italy there was increase in prostitution, especially forced child prostitution. This horrified Maria.  After the liberation of Italy, the allies originally selected General Badoglio to govern Italy. Badoglio was the fascist general of Mussolini who supervised the use of poison gas against the population of Ethiopia, during Italy’s war against her African victims.

Maria Louisa Berneri fearlessly wrote on many topics. She decried the allied bombings of German and Italian cities during the War.  After the war she defended   Jehovah’s Witnesses, who suffered persecution by the Communist government of Yugoslavia. She discussed starvation in Rumania. Maria opposed wartime forced labour. She protested the purge of writers in the Ukraine. Most important of all, Maria Louisa Berneri called upon workers in the United States, Britain, and Soviet Russia to refuse to build atomic weapons.

STARVATION IN POST WORLD WAR TWO EUROPE

Maria was deeply concerned about starvation in post-World War Two Europe–especially in Germany. She supported Victor Gollancz’s campaign to help starving Germany. George Orwell supported Gollancz’s efforts and his Save Europe Now Committee. There was little sympathy in Britain for the starving people in Germany. Among those who did sympathize with the Germans, there were suggestions of giving up a ration point, or points, to feed hungry Europeans. Since the beginning of World War Two food, and many other products had been rationed.

Orwell was very supportive of his ex-publisher’s (Victor Gollancz) efforts to save Europe from mass starvation, and specifically mentioned Gollancz by name in his writing. “The Politics of Starvation” was published first in Tribune on 18 January 1946. It was reprinted in 1968 in Volume Four of his Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters. The situation that Orwell was attempting to bring to the attention of the public includes the following description:

“In Budapest, in November, the chemists1 were closing for lack of supplies, the hospitals had neither…fuel, or anesthetics, and it was calculated that town contained about 30,000 stray children, some of whom had formed themselves into criminal bands.”

Also, George Orwell did not want Britain to repeat the mistake of the way Germany was treated after The First World War when the allies by “wantonly starving Germany.” No good could from starving a people as a policy.

Maria Louisa Berneri was cynical about the Marshall plan. But it relieved starvation in Germany and Western Europe. Germany printed a stamp honoring General George C. Marshall. The Marshall Plan, among other things, shipped tons and tons of food to Europe. This was in the aftermath of World War Two and the beginning of the cold war.   But the new malignant nationalism spreading now (2017) in Europe is not a good sign.    

FIGHTING IMPORTED RACISM IN BRITAIN

One of Berneri’s articles was concerned with the color bar being brought to England with the arrival of American troops.  At that time many Americans service people arriving in Britain. Many British girls preferred Black to white soldiers. Berneri believed this racism must be resisted. Some people who have grown up since the 1960s may not be aware of the extent of racism in America at that time.   

ALLIED COMPLICITY THE HOLOCAUST   

In introductory material to his late wife’s collection Neither East Nor West, Vernon Richards deals with Allied complicity in the Holocaust. He even wrote that “We know, for example, that the British government, knowing exactly what was happening in Nazi-occupied Europe sought to close the last escape-route down the Danube. In 1943 Lord Cranbourne, the Colonial Secretary wrote to the British ambassador in Turkey to stress that Jews in occupied Europe should not be encouraged to escape, nor should they be organized or helped.”  British forces physically tried to prevent escape. This did not represent the feelings of the British people.  In a footnote to the above Richards cites a Channel 4 documentary Raoul Wallenberg: Between the Lines showing that “400,000 places within the [United States] quota” were not filled, leaving these 400,000 people to be murdered.  “The United States gave refuge to only 10 per cent of the number that they were allowed by law.” Thus more than six million Jews were murdered.

Louisa Maria Berneri had great empathy for the Jews faced with extermination during the Nazi era. In “Hell Ships for Refugees” originally published in 1942, Maria Louisa Berneri cites the Italian Language America anarchist magazine L’Adunata, which in turn cited Time Magazine about a ship of Jewish refugees in a coffin ship going from port to port with desperate passengers who would rather kill themselves than return to Nazi Europe. They were prevented from landing at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Also, “Ramon Castillo (President of Argentine) gave the order for them to leave,” after that they were embarked in a Brazilian port—they were again rejected.    

Jewish refugees on the ship Saint Louis (1939.) More than 900 of them were fleeing from Nazi Germany. They were denied admission to Cuba, although they had valid visas. The United States Cost Guard prevented them from landing in America. They were returned to Europe, where over 600 of them were murdered in the Holocaust. The refusal of asylum for Jewish refugees, before and during World War Two, greatly concerned Maria Louisa Berneri. Her husband Vernon Richards also manifested great concern with British and American policies, which contributed towards the Holocaust.

WHAT WORKERS CAN AND SHOULD DO

A recurring theme in Maria Louisa Berneri articles published in Neither East Nor West, was what workers could and should do, and she pointed to specific examples of what workers had accomplished. Workers could defeat fascism, rather than depending on imperialist governments. Workers should strike in places where nuclear weapons where produce, just as anarchist workers in Germany refused to work on armaments after The First World War. Workers, she wrote, should force their governments to admit Jewish refugees to freedom, instead of watching them go from port to port in coffin ships before and during The Second World War.  Just as many workers had refused to load arms on ships intended for the counter-revolutionaries and foreign interventionists during the Russian Civil War. Workers, she said, should refuse to load arms intended to fight against anti-colonial revolutions in Indonesia and Indo-China. Workers should, she wrote, after The Second World War, force their governments to support a people’s revolution in Spain against Franco. Workers could stop wars by ending imperialism. This is similar to Scottish anarchist Ethel MacDonald’s broadcasts from revolutionary Barcelona calling upon Britain’s workers to support their Spanish fellow workers. Rudolf Rocker was one of the few people to predict just how horrible the First World War was going to be—with an unprecedented violent loss of life up to that time.  He blamed the workers and many socialists for supporting their national governments by going to war.  

ANIMAL FARM

It has  puzzled anarchists as to why George Orwell, who spoke so highly of the Spanish Anarchists, wrote about the possibilities of public opinion anarchistic totalitarianism in the Essays “Lear, Tolstoy, and The Fool,” and Politics vs. Literature: An Examination of Gulliver’s Travels.  Bernard Crick may have inadvertently hit upon an answer. This is speculative but plausible.

While Orwell was making efforts to have Animal Farm published, that book was submitted to Freedom Press. According to Crick, Marie Louisa Berneri strongly opposed accepting the Animal Farm.2 George Woodcock said that this rejection was due to the fact that Orwell supported World War Two. This is up to dispute, but is a possibility. Bernard Crick believes that the exact story is impossible to figure out because of the percussion of the Anarchists by the British government, their affairs were somewhat confused.3

If Maria Louisa Berneri did reject it, perhaps it was because it created a Trotskyite impression about the Russian Revolution, whereas anarchists know that the repression of the Communists started before Stalin. Snowball is taken after Trotsky, and although Snowball is shown to have faults, he is pure as snow compared to Napoleon, who is taken after Stalin. Emma Goldman once wrote an article titled, “Me Thinks Trotsky Does Protest too Much.” Read The Kronstadt Rebellion by Alexander Berkman.     

HEROIC ANARCHIST WOMEN

Marie Louise Berneri was one of many heroic anarchist women. Dorothy Day was another such person. Pope Francis praised her to the American Congress. God forbid that anyone in the public media should have referred to her as a “Catholic Anarchist.” Voltairine de Cleyre was an individualist anarchist who eventually molded her view as an anarchist without adjective. She was an early feminist. She gave valuable morale support to Alexander Berkman during his imprisonment. Lucy Parsons, the widow of martyred anarchist Albert Parsons, was a persistent fighter for workers’ rights, who eventually became a Communist. Ethel Mannin was a prolific novelist, and supporter of the Spanish Loyalists.  Of course there was Emma Goldman. Emma was nurse, a birth control activists, feminist, public speaker, exponent of the drama, publisher of Mother Earth, and perpetual exile.  Ethel MacDonald, a Scottish anarchist broadcast from Loyalist Spain and called upon British workers to support their Spanish comrades. Also when Communists gained power she helped anarchists escapee from the very real danger they were in. Ethel MacDonald died from Multiple Sclerosis at age 51. Federica Montseny Mañé was Minister of Health in the Spanish Loyalist Government for a brief period. She said that she was just as committed an anarchist as before her joining the Spanish Loyalist Coalition Government. Vernon Richards believed that the Anarchist participation in the Loyalist Government was a big mistake. The American Anarchist magazine Man had the same viewpoint opposing Anarchist participation in the Loyalist government.   

Maria Louisa Berneri opposed wars, was engaged by immediate issues, wrote frequently, and took on all comers in just causes. Berneri should be read and remembered by people today—especially by anarchists and those sympatric to libertarian ideas and values, and all believers in freedom, those interested in psychotherapy alternatives, and those working for a better world. She was not only an advocate for the working class, but tried to be a catalyst for action by the workers, against the injustices in our world and the creation of an anarcho-syndicalist society.   

Conclusion

Despite some differences I have with Maria Louisa Berneri on World War Two, President Franklin Roosevelt, and the Marshall Plan, she does not seem to be completely wrong. If Maria Louise Berneri was too utopian in outlook, we must have a counter to the prevalence of realpolitik. Maria’s works live after her, and are an antidote to evil, and a bright guidepost pointing us in a clear direction to a much better world.   


FOOTNOTES

1.      “Chemists” is what British people call Pharmacists. In the United States the terms are Pharmacists and Drug Stores.

2.      Crick, Bernard. (1980) George Orwell: A Life. New York: Penguin Books. Page 460.

3.      Ibid, Pages 460 to 461.


BIBLIOGRAPHY

Includes both source material and subjects covered in MLB’s books.

Anatoli (Kuznetsov), A. (1970) Babi Yar: A Document in the Form of a Novel (New, Complete, Uncensored Version). New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. (Translated from the Russian into English by David Floyd.)

Anger, Per. (1981) With Raoul Wallenberg in Budapest: Memories of the War Years in Hungary.  New York: Holocaust Library.

Appleton, Matthew.  (2000) A Free Range Childhood: Self Regulation at Summerhill School.  Brandon, Vermont: Foundation for Educational Renewal. Inc. (A Solomon Press Book)

Avrich, Paul. (1995) Anarchist Voices: An Oral History of Anarchism in the United States. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press.

Avrich, Paul. (1980) The Modern School Movement: Anarchism and Education in the United States, Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Pres

Berkman, Alexander. (1923) The Kronstadt Rebellion. Germany: Published by the author.

Bettelheim, Bruno. (1969)  Children of the Dream: Communal Child Rearing and American Education. New York: The Free Press.

Bowers, Glaude G. (1954) My Mission to Spain: Watching the Rehearsal for World War Two. New York: Simon and Schuster.

Brown, Malcolm.  (ed.) (2005) T.E. Lawrence in War and Peace: An Anthology of the Military Writings of Lawrence of Arabia. Barnsley, England: Frontline Books.

“Catalonia Honors Dead Army Chief: 500,000 Parade at Funeral of Durruti.” (November 23rd, 1936) The New York Times.

Crick, Bernard. (1982) George Orwell: A Life. New York: Penguin Books.

Dolgoff, Anatole. (2016) Left of the Left: My Memories of Sam Dolgoff. Oakland: AK Press. (Introduction by Andrew Cornell.)

Fisher Fishkin, Shelley. (1993) Was Huck Black: Mark Twain and African-American Voices. New York: Oxford University Press.

George Orwell at Home (and Among the Anarchists): Essays and Photographs.  (1988)  London: Freedom Press.

Gollancz, Victor. (1947)  In Darkest Germany: The Record of a Visit. London: Victor Gollancz, LTD.

Kaplan, Edith Saposnik. (1995) Russian Nightmares, American Dreams. New York:  The Solomon Press.

Morse, Arthur M. (1967, 1968) While Six Million Died: A Chronical of American Apathy. New York: Random House.

Nehru, Jawaharlal. (1946) The Discovery of India. New Delhi: Oxford University Press.

Nehru, Jawaharlal. (1941) The Unity of India: Collected Writings 1937-1940. London: Lindsay Drummod.

Orwell, George. (1933) Down and Out in Paris and London. London: Victory Gollancz, Ltd.

Orwell, George. (1934) Burmese Days. London: Victor Gollancz Ltd.

Orwell, George. (1938) Homage to Catalonia. London: Seeker and Warburg.

Orwell, George. (March 1947) “Lear, Tolstoy, and the Fool” in Polemic No. 7. Reprinted in among over collections,  The Collected Essays, Journalism & Letters of George Orwell: Vol.4 In Front of Your Nose, Edited by Sonia Orwell and Ian Angus.

Orwell, George.  (September-October 1946) “Politics vs. Literature: An Examination of Gulliver’s Travels.”  In Polemic. # 5.  Reprinted in among over collections in The Collected Essays, Journalism & Letters of George Orwell: Vol.4 In Front of Your Nose, Edited by Sonia Orwell and Ian Angus.

Orwell, George. (January 18th, 1946) “The Politics of Starvation.” In Tribune. Reprinted in  Orwell, Sonia and Ian Angus (eds.) (1968) The Collected Essays, Journalism, and Letters of George Orwell: Vol. 4, In Front of Your Nose, 1946-1950. (Pages 82 to 85)

Orwell, George. (1937) The Road to Wigan Pier. London: Victor Gollancz, Ldt.

Richards, Vernon. (1953, 1972, 1983) Lessons of the Spanish Revolution. London: Freedom Press.  

Silver, Brian. (1998) The Ascent of Science. New York: Oxford University Press. (A Solomon Press Book.)

Solomon, Raymond S. (Fall 2016) “The Anarcho-Syndicalist Genesis of Orwell’s Revolutionary Years.”  In Anarcho-Syndicalist Review.  # 68. (Pages 19 to 21)

Solomon, S. Raymond. (October 2001) “George Orwell: The Revolutionary.” In Free Voices.  (Pages 16 to 20.)

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