Modern Science and Anarchism.
1553, similar ideas against the State, its laws, and its "supreme
injustice"; as also did the early precursors of Rationalism in
Armenia (in the ninth century), the Hussites (especially Chojecki,
in the fifteenth century), and the early Anabaptists.
Rabelais in the first half of the sixteenth century, Fenelon at
the end of it, and especially the Encyclopaedist Diderot at the
end of the eighteenth century, developed the same ideas, which
found, as has just been mentioned, some practical expression
during the French Revolution.,
But it was Godwin, in his "Enquiry Concerning Political
Justice," who stated in 1793 in a quite definite form the political
and economic principles of Anarchism. He did not use the word
" Anarchy " itself, but he very forcibly laid down its principles,
boldly attacking the laws, proving the uselessness of the State,
and maintaining that only with the abolition of Courts true
Justice—the only real foundation of all society—would become
possible. As regards property, he openly advocated Communism.*
Proudhon was the first to use the word "An-archy" (No-
Government) and to submit to a powerful criticism the fruitless
efforts of men to give themselves such a Government as would
prevent the rich ones from dominating tbe poor, and at the same
time always remain under the control of the governed ones. The
repeated attempts of France, since 1793, at giving herself such a
Constitution, and the failure of the Revolution of 1848, gave him
rich material for his criticism.
Being an enemy of all forms of State Socialism, of which the
Communists of those years (the "forties" and "fifties" of the
nineteenth century) represented a mere sub-division, Proudhon
fiercely attacked all such attempts; and taking Robert Owen's
system of labour cheques representing hours of labour, he
developed a conception of Mutualism^ in which any sort of
political Government would be useless.
The values of all the commodities being measured by the
amount of labour necessary to produce them, all the exchanges
between the producers could be carried on by means of a national
bank, which would accept payment in labour cheques—a Clearing
House establishing the daily balance of exchanges between the
thousands of branches of this bank.
The services exchanged by different men would thus be
* It is all in the first edition of 1793, made in two quarto volumes.
In the second edition, published in two octavo volumes in 1796, after
the prosecution of his Republican friends, he withdrew his views on
Communism, and mitigated Ms views on government.