Beyond the ‘people’s community’
The anarchist movement from the fin de siècle to the First World War in Germany
in Anarchism, 1914–18
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This chapter focuses on the anarchist movement as a political phenomenon at the margins of imperial German society. Drawing on government and police records as well as contemporary press coverage, it concludes that anarchism's ideology, goals and means placed it 'beyond' the sphere of politics. This development reached its peak during the First World War, when anarchists found themselves outside of the 'people's community'. The concept of 'people's community' was a forceful trope in the war propaganda, helping to further alienate peace activists from society and exclude them from political platforms. Anarchist anti-militarism occupied a particular place within the political culture of Germany. The attempts to popularise anarchist ideas in Germany coincided with the enactment of the rigorous and extraordinary legislation known as the 'anti-socialist laws'. The new century started with further attempts to counter the 'threat' of anarchist violence through special legislation.

Anarchism, 1914–18

Internationalism, anti-militarism and war

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