ACKELSBERG, Martha. Historian and political theorist

Biography and Selected Works

revolutionSociety. Teaching: see School, EducationKROPOTKINE, Petr Alekseevitch (1842-1921) Spanish Civil War (1936-1939)sexuality and Gender theoryACKELSBERG, MarthaBOOKCHIN, Murray (14 janvier 1921 – 30 juillet 2006) economy: agricultureSpain. 20th CenturySociety. Society (views of - )power — dominationcollectivism and collectivizationPolitics. Popular FrontPopulation. Jews (Jewish origin)Philosophy. Anarchist theoriesSociety. Collective memoryEconomy. CompetitionpoliticsBREITBART, Myrna Margulies

American Professor at the Department of Government of Smith College (Northampton, Mass., U.S.A.) where she teaches Applied Democracy and Women’s Studies. She has written a history of Spanish Anarchist Women during the 1936 Spanish Civil War.


See also
 her own page
 her interview by Rebecca DeWitt


1. Books
 Free Women of Spain: Anarchism and the Struggle for the Emancipation of Women. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1991.

(Slightly revised Spanish translation:) Mujeres Libres: El anarquismo y la lucha por la emancipacion de las mujeres Barcelona: Virus Editorial, 1999

  • 2005. "Preface to the AK Press Edition. Revised Ap. 11, 2004.
    2. Articles and Book Chapters:
      "Mujeres Libres: Identity, Community, Sexuality and Power," Anarchist Studies 8 (2000)

  "Rethinking Anarchism, Rethinking Power: A Contemporary Feminist Perspective," in Reconstructing Political Theory: Feminist Perspectives, ed. Mary Lyndon Shanley and Uma Narayan (Cambridge, UK: Polity Press, 1997): 158-77
  "Models of Revolution: Rural Women and Anarchist Collectivisation in Civil War Spain," The Journal of Peasant Studies, Vol. 20, No. 3 (April 1993): 367-88
  "Mujeres Libres: The Preservation of Memory under the Politics of Repression in Spain," International Yearbook of Oral History and Life Stories, Vol. I (Memory and Totalitarianism), special editor: Luisa Passserini (1992): 125-43
  "Anarchism and Feminism," (with Kathryn Pyne Addelson and Shawn Pyne) in Impure Thoughts: Essays on Philosophy, Feminism and Ethics, ed. Kathryn Pyne Addelson, Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1991, pp. 159-87
  "Education, Preparation, and the Spanish Revolution," in The Modern School Movement: Historical and Personal Notes on the Ferrer Schools in Spain (Croton-on-Hudson, NY: Friends of the Modern School, 1990)
  "Preface" to Trois cents hommes et moi, ou Estampe d’une revolution, by Anna Delso (Montreal: Les Éditions de la pleine lune, 1989): 13-32; reprinted in Spanish as "Prefacio," to Tres ceintos hombres y yo (Madrid: Ediciones Anselmo Lorenzo,
  "Anarchist Revolution and Women’s Liberation," Society (January/February 1988), pp. 29-37

This article examines the interplay of anarchist ideology, organizational practice, and social structures in defining the possibilities and limits of that revolutionary transformation. The insistence of Spanish anarchists on the importance of preparation to revolutionary change might well lead us to assume that their somewhat limited understanding of the subordination of women would necessarily result in limited gains for women during the revolution. Nevertheless, the extent of social change in gender relationships during this period prods us to examine the ways in which the activities and organizational practices of the movement modified anarchist ideological commitments to define the parameters for revolutionary change. In addition, prevailing understandings of the relationship between "home" and "work" (the "private" and the "public") affected, in turn, both definitions of "preparation" and the dimensions of organizational practice.

  "La revolucion social y la colectivizacion," with Myrna M. Breitbart, in Estelas, Laberintos, Nuevas Sendas: Unamuno, Valle Inclan, Garcia Lorca, La Guerra
, ed. Angel Loureiro (Barcelona: Anthropos, 1988): 383-396
  "Terrains of Protest: Striking City Women," with Myrna M. Breitbart, Our Generation, Vol. 19, no. 1 (Fall 1987): 151-75
  "Contexts of Revolution: Sex Roles and Anarchist Collectivization in Civil War Spain," Communal Life: An International Perspective, ed. Yosef Forni, Yaacov Oved, and Idit Paz (Efal, Israel and New Brunswick, N.J.: Yad Tabenkin and Transaction Books, 1987): 591-605
  "Anarchist Alternatives to Competition," with Kathryn Pyne Addelson, in Competition: A Feminist Taboo? ed. Valerie Miner and Helen Longino (New York: Feminist Press, 1987): 221-33
  "Women and the Politics of the Popular Front: Political Mobilization or Social Revolution?" International Labour and Working Class History (Special Issue: The Popular Front) No. 30 (Fall 1986), pp. 1-12
  "Revolution and Community: Mobilization, Depoliticization and Perceptions of Change
in Civil War Spain," in Women Living Change, ed. Susan C. Bourque and Donna Robinson Divine (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1985), pp. 85-115
  "Sexual Divisions and Anarchist Collectivization in Civil War Spain," Communal Societies, Vol. 5 (Fall 1985): 101-21
  "Separate and Equal? Mujeres Libres and Anarchist Strategy for Women’s Emancipation," Feminist Studies Vol. XI, No.1 (1985): 63-83
  "Mujeres Libres. Individuality and Community: Organizing Women in the Spanish
Civil War," Radical America Vol. 19, No. 4 (1984): 7-19
* "Peter Kropotkin" (with Myrna Breitbart) and "Murray Bookchin" entries for the
Routledge Dictionary of Twentieth Century Political Biography, ed. Philip Green and Robert Benewick (London: Routledge, 1992)
  "Review essay on the Spanish Civil War," Our Generation, Vol. 15, no. 2 (Summer 1982)
  "Civil Wars and Perennial Losers: Review Essay," Black Rose, NO. 7 (Spring 1981): 39-45 of Clara Lida, Anarquismo y revolucion en la Espana del XIX in Journal of Modern History, Vol. 46, No. 1 (March 1974)
  "Gender and Political Life: New Directions in Political Science," with Irene Diamond. In :Analyzing Gender: A Handbook of Social Science Research, edited by Beth B. Hess and Myra Marx Ferre. Beverly Hills: Sage Publications, 1987.
  "Anarchism and Feminism," with Kathryn Pyne Addelson and Shawn Pyne. In: Impure Thoughts: Essays on Philosophy, Feminism and Ethics, edited by Kathryn Pyne Addelson. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1991.
  "Terrains of Protest: Striking City Women," with Myrna Brietbart. Our Generation, Vol. 19, No. 1 (1987): 151-175.
  "Communities, Resistance, and Women’s Activism." In: Women and the Politics of Empowerment: Perspectives from the Community and the Workplace, edited by Ann Bookman and Sandra Morgen. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1988.
  "Pride, Prejudice, and Politics: Jewish Jews on the American Left," Response, #4, 1982.