Andrea Costa to “l’Egalité” of Paris (1878)

Extracts from a letter by Andrea Costa to l’Egalité of Paris (1878):

“As for doctrines, we can say that we have very few. We are anarchists, and that is all. We desire that each be given the possibility of communicating their needs and the means of of satisfying them. But, the expression of those needs being impossible without the prior destruction of the present order of things, our aim is action. We consider participation in politics, perpetuating in the masses the idea of and need for government, as a renunciation of the revolution. We do not mean to remain popular consciousness, because we consider ourselves neither better nor worse than the others and it is not up to us, but to a historical development of the people in their entirety, to remake that consciousness. That renewal will take place, but it will be an effect, not a cause of the revolution.”

[Also translated from Malon’s “Histoire du socialisme.”]

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Independent scholar, translator and archivist.