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3. Mikhail Bakunin

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About this Lecture


In this module, we introduce the figure of Mikhail Bakunin (1814-1876), focusing in particular on: (i) his association with the revolutionary side of anarchism, committed to the abandonment of all central control and authority; (ii) his background as the son of a Russian nobleman; (iii) his participation in the May Uprising in Dresden; (iv) his work in Europe more broadly, including his association with the First International; (v) his dispute with Marx and the splitting of the First International between statists (followers of Marx) and anarchists (followers of Bakunin).


In this course, Professor Ruth Kinna (Loughborough University) explores the idea of anarchism. In the first five modules, we introduce five key figures in anarchist thinking: Max Stirner (1806-65), Pierre-Joseph Proudhon (1809-65), Mikhail Bakunin (1814-1876), Peter Kropotkin (1842-1921), and Emma Goldman (1869-1940). After that, we spend five modules exploring four key principles in anarchism: rejection of the state, liberty, economic freedom and utopianism. In the eleventh, twelfth and thirteen modules, we think about six different types of anarchism – individualism, collectivism, communism, egoism, social anarchism and syndicalism – before turning in the final four modules to explore seven key concepts in anarchism: power, authority, government, the state, altruism, autonomy and direct action.


Ruth Kinna is Professor of Political Theory in the Department of Politics and International Studies at Loughborough University. She is a political theorist and historian of ideas with research interests in anarchism, nineteenth and early twentieth-century socialist thought, utopianism and contemporary radicalism. Her book William Morris: The Art of Socialism was published in 2000. She has since published The Beginner's Guide to Anarchism (Oneworld, 2005/2009), Kropotkin: Reviewing the Classical Anarchist Tradition (University of Edinburgh, 2016) and The Government of No One (Pelican, 2019).

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APA style

Kinna, R. (2020, February 17). Anarchism - Mikhail Bakunin [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Kinna, R. "Anarchism – Mikhail Bakunin." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 17 Feb 2020,