I do not describe myself as an anarchist, (I think I’m more of a socialist) but they are both labels that are widely misunderstood and, arguably, both unnecessary and unhelpful.
I was introduced to the term anarchist through the punk scene of the late 1970s and, specifically, the music and ideology of CRASS. Much as I admired their ethics and music, they were a bit too straight-edge for me, although certainly influential in both ways.
“Penis Envy” is an astonishing artistic achievement, not something that is often said about overtly political work, and Gee Vaucher’s paintings & collage (and the design of CRASS album covers, generally) at least partially defined the look and feel of a whole generation of outsider activism.
My own activism is not quite so hardcore, although I am repeatedly spurred on by the quotation that is attributed to statesman and political philosopher Edmund Burke (1729 – 1797), “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing”.
My own hobby horses are anti-corruption and pro-voting.
So come along to the Sheffield Anarchist Book Fair at The Workstation, Paternoster Row, Sheffield UK S1 2BX on 12th July, and see what I am up to.