Anarchist communism is a form of anarchism that advocates the abolition of the State and capitalism in favour of a horizontal network of voluntary associations through which everyone will be free to satisfy his or her needs.
Anarchist communism is also known as anarcho-communism, communist anarchism, or, sometimes, libertarian communism. However, while all anarchist communists are libertarian communists, some libertarian communists, such as council communists, are not anarchists. What distinguishes anarchist communism from other variants of libertarian communism is the formers opposition to all forms of political power, hierarchy and domination.
Anarchist communism stresses egalitarianism and the abolition of social hierarchy and class distinctions that arise from unequal wealth distribution, the abolition of capitalism and money, and the collective production and distribution of wealth by means of voluntary associations. In anarchist communism, the state and property no longer exist. Each individual and group is free to contribute to production and to satisfy their needs based on their own choice. Systems of production and distribution are managed by their participants.
The abolition of wage labour is central to anarchist communism. With distribution of wealth being based on self-determined needs, people will be free to engage in whatever activities they find most fulfilling and will no longer have to engage in work for which they have neither the temperament nor the aptitude. Anarchist communists argue that there is no valid way of measuring the value of any one person’s economic contributions because all wealth is a collective product of current and preceding generations. Anarchist communists argue that any economic system based on wage labour and private property will require a coercive state apparatus to enforce property rights and to maintain the unequal economic relationships that will inevitably arise.
The Conquest Of Bread By: Peter Kropotkin
Whereas Marx’s main contribution to economics was his analysis of the commodity relationship in Capital – capitalism rather than communism – Kropotkin assesses what would need to be done, and most importantly how, in a communist society.
Now, almost 100 years later, technology and society has changed enormously, but the practical consideration Kropotkin gives to the question of production and distribution in a revolutionary society has taken on a new importance in the context of our globalised, interdependent, and resource intensive economic system.