MCGUINN, Jacob; MUCIGNAT, Rosa; PEROVIC, Sanja; PICKFORD, Benjamin; VITI, Cristina (eds.)
An Anarchist Playbook

An anthology of translations pertaining to the ongoing work of the Radical Translations group: a collective that looks to the French Revolution to recover the vitality of Europe’s shared radical past via an ongoing experiment in collaborative translation and collectivity.

The Conspiracy of Equals (1796) is often hailed as the first revolution against a revolutionary state. Even if the conspirators were soon found out and put on trial, their ideas of radical equality and liberty shaped future generations of revolutionaries worldwide. An Anarchist Playbook—the first publication in Tenement’s new imprint, No University Press—gathers together many of the key documents from their trial across a myriad forms, with a number of these texts appearing herein in their first English-language translation.

Assembled in the Playbook are the last words of Gracchus Babeuf, the leader of the conspiracy and a radical proponent of the abolition of private property, and of his fellow conspirator Augustin Darthé, as they faced the guillotine. We’ve a letter, written in the popular idiom of the sans-culottes, that urges the common soldier to rebel; the score and lyrics of a street song that names the new class enemy: the wealthy bourgeoisie who have profited from the revolution; a first-time English translation of ‘The Last Judgement of All Kings’—an extraordinary one-act play by Sylvain Maréchal, the unofficial poet of the Conspiracy, that was performed to considerable acclaim in Year II of the Revolution (and that the Workshop is in the process of adapting for contemporary audiences).

Many of these texts were never published in their own time, and form a part of the testament left behind by Philippe Buonarroti, a leading conspirator who inspired new generations of revolutionaries across Europe over the course of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Among the best known works included is the Manifesto of Equals, long considered a founding text of social, communist and anarchist revolutions. The Playbook presents a translation of the Manifesto alongside other key texts by the conspirators, reconstructing the richness and variety of revolutionary communication that informs the editorship, shape, and scope of this volume. [publisher's note]

Published by Tenement Press, 2024

Price: 25€

MCGUINN, Jacob; MUCIGNAT, Rosa; PEROVIC, Sanja; PICKFORD, Benjamin; VITI, Cristina (eds.) - An Anarchist Playbook