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Living my Life, Vol 2 Paperback – 28 Mar 2003

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Product details

  • Paperback: 508 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications Inc.; New edition edition (28 Mar 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0486225445
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486225449
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 14 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 660,977 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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About the Author

Emma Goldman (1869 – 1940) was an anarchist known for her political activism, writing and speeches. She played a pivotal role in the development of anarchist political philosophy in North America and Europe in the first half of the twentieth century. Born in Kovno in the Russian Empire (now Kaunas in Lithuania), Goldman emigrated to the US in 1885 and lived in New York City, where she joined the burgeoning anarchist movement. Attracted to anarchism after the Haymarket affair, Goldman became a writer and a renowned lecturer on anarchist philosophy, women's rights, and social issues, attracting crowds of thousands. She and anarchist writer Alexander Berkman, her lover and lifelong friend, planned to assassinate Henry Clay Frick as an act of propaganda of the deed. Though Frick survived the attempt on his life, Berkman was sentenced to twenty-two years in prison. Goldman was imprisoned several times in the years that followed, for "inciting to riot" and illegally distributing information about birth control. In 1906, Goldman founded the anarchist journal Mother Earth. In 1917, Goldman and Berkman were sentenced to two years in jail for conspiring to "induce persons not to register" for the newly instated draft. After their release from prison, they were arrested—along with hundreds of others—and deported to Russia. Initially supportive of that country's Bolshevik revolution, Goldman quickly voiced her opposition to the Soviet use of violence and the repression of independent voices. In 1923, she wrote a book about her experiences, My Disillusionment in Russia. While living in England, Canada, and France, she wrote an autobiography called Living My Life. After the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War, she traveled to Spain to support the anarchist revolution there. She died in Toronto on May 14, 1940. During her life, Goldman was lionized as a free-thinking "rebel woman" by admirers, and derided by critics as an advocate of politically motivated murder and violent revolution. Her writing and lectures spanned a wide variety of issues, including prisons, atheism, freedom of speech, militarism, capitalism, marriage, free love, and homosexuality. Although she distanced herself from first-wave feminism and its efforts toward women's suffrage, she developed new ways of incorporating gender politics into anarchism. After decades of obscurity, Goldman's iconic status was revived in the 1970s, when feminist and anarchist scholars rekindled popular interest in her life. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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By franco corradin on 16 Sep 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
very goog
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful By H S Marks on 26 Jan 2006
Format: Paperback
The single most important autobiography in the English language make sure you get VOLUME 1. Amazon really needs to link the two volumes for single purchase convenience.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 1 review
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Steven H Propp - Published on
Format: Paperback
Emma Goldman (1869-1940) was an important Russian-born anarchist in North America and Europe in the first half of the twentieth century, who was also an important precursor to the later Women's movement. Some of her other writings are Anarchism and Other Essays and Marriage And Love. The previous volume is Living My Life, Vol. 1.

She says, "To me anarchism was not a mere theory for a distant future; it was a living influence to free us from inhibitions, internal no less than external, and from the destructive barriers that separate man from man." (Pg. 556)

Of the aftermath of WWI, she states, "And Woodrow Wilson, that innocent at the diplomatic gaming-table, how easily he had been duped by the European sharks!... how pathetic was his failure, how complete his collapse! I kept wondering how worshipful American intelligentsia felt at seeing their idol no longer protected by his Presbyterian mask. The war to end war terminated in a peace that carried a rich promise of more terrible wars." (Pg. 682)

She admits, "Life in prison, unless one has vital interests outside, is deadly dull." (Pg. 685) Later, she adds, "In the isolation and loneliness of the cell one finds the courage to face the nakedness of one's soul. If one survives the ordeal, one is less hurt by the nakedness of other souls." (Pg. 694)

While in Russia, she records, "The very brawn of the revolutionary struggle was crying out in anguish and bitterness against the people they had helped place in power. They spoke of the Bolshevik betrayal of the Revolution, of the slavery forced upon the toilers, the emasculation of the soviets, the suppression of speech and thought, the filling of prisons with recalcitrant peasants, workers, soldiers, sailors, and rebels of every kind... These charges and denunciations beat upon me like hammers and left me stunned." (Pg. 733) She concludes, "Soviet Russia has become the modern socialist Lourdes, to which the blind and the lame, the deaf and the dumb were flocking for miraculous cures. I was filled with pity for these deluded ones, but I felt only contempt for those others who ... had seen with open eyes and understood, and yet been conquered." (Pg. 916)

Goldman was certainly one of the most interesting political figures of the first half of the twentieth century, and this book clearly illustrates why.
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