political philosophy and movement

Anarchism is a political philosophy and movement that is skeptical of all justifications for authority and seeks to abolish the institutions it claims maintain unnecessary coercion and hierarchy, typically including, though not necessarily limited to, governments, nation states, and capitalism. Anarchism advocates for the replacement of the state with stateless societies or other forms of free associations. As a historically left-wing movement, usually placed on the farthest left of the political spectrum, it is usually described alongside communalism and libertarian Marxism as the libertarian wing (libertarian socialism) of the socialist movement. Humans lived in societies without formal hierarchies long before the establishment of formal states, realms, or empires. With the rise of organised hierarchical bodies, scepticism toward authority also rose. Although traces of anarchist thought are found throughout history, modern anarchism emerged from the Enlightenment. During the latter half of the 19th and the first decades of the 20th century, the anarchist movement flourished in most parts of the world and had a significant role in workers' struggles for emancipation. Various anarchist schools of thought formed during this period. Anarchists have taken part in several revolutions, most notably in the Paris Commune, the Russian Civil War and the Spanish Civil War, whose end marked the end of the classical era of anarchism. In the last decades of the 20th and into the 21st century, the anarchist movement has been resurgent once more, growing in popularity and influence within anti-capitalist, anti-war and anti-globalisation movements. Anarchists employ a diversity of tactics in order to meet their ideal ends which can be broadly separated into revolutionary and evolutionary tactics; there is significant overlap between the two, which are merely descriptive. Revolutionary tactics aim to bring down authority and state, having taken a violent turn in the past, while evolutionary tactics aim to prefigure what an anarchist society would be like. Anarchist thought, criticism, and praxis have played a part in diverse areas of human society.
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main subject: anarchism

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