The Black Rose Anarchist Federation: Our Politics.

A guest authored edgy Essay by BRRN

APP Editors’ Note:

This is the fifth in a series on the historical and philosophical foundations of anarchism and socialism, with special reference to social anarchism (aka “anarcho-socialism,” “libertarian socialism,” etc.) and democratic socialism.

We’ve decided to start with the Democratic Socialists of America, aka the DSA, and the Black Rose/Rosa Negra Anarchist Federation, aka the BRRN, for three reasons:

first, to highlight the recent emergence of the Democratic Socialists of America as a significant political movement in the USA,

second, to stress the fundamental convergences, parallels, and shared ideals between contemporary social anarchism and democratic socialism in the USA, and

third, to point up the burning contemporary need for a “borderless,” constructive, cosmopolitan coalition of all serious leftists and progressives everywhere.

The following essay was downloaded from the BRRN website, HERE.



Who Are the Anarchists, and What is Anarchism?

Resistance Rising: Socialist Strategy in the Age of Political Revolution.

Towards Freedom: Democratic Socialist Theory and Practice.

A Brief History of the American Left.



We are an organization of revolutionaries who share common visions of a new world — a world where people collectively control their own workplaces, communities and land and where all basic needs are met. A world where power and participation flow from the bottom upwards and society is organized for peoples’ aspirations, passions, and needs rather than profit, white supremacy and racial domination, patriarchy, or imperialism; and where we live sustainably with the planet.

We believe that this vision can only be brought about through the revolutionary power of the working class organized in the workplaces, community, schools, and streets to overthrow the state and capitalism and build a new world from the bottom up.

As those actively seeking to construct this vision we are inspired by the traditions of anarchist-communism, anarcho-syndicalism, especifismo, platformism, feminism, queer liberation, black liberation, abolitionism, anti-racism and their history of global struggle for liberation. We believe in the need for a political home from which to organize ourselves and put forward our vision. We believe in the need to create spaces for the development of new revolutionaries that allow the grouping together of similarly minded militants.

We see the need to build a specifically anarchist organization united around a common set of ideas, strategy, and practice. We believe that political organization should speak to the needs of our time, and act as a catalyst in struggles to expand their revolutionary potential. Political organization should be a vehicle to build, contribute to, and learn from social struggles.


Revolutionary Organization & Mass Work

The revolutionary organization seeks to contribute to the theoretical and practical development of revolutionary struggle. The revolutionary organization participates in and seeks to broaden and generalize the revolutionary potential of the working class. It strives to retain a historical memory of its experiences of success and failures in order to strengthen mass movements for its liberation. It participates in mass movements as equals in struggle. The revolutionary organization should be a tool for the active and militant members within the class. It never seeks to dominate, impose upon, manipulate, command or control mass movements in recognition of the need for revolutionary pluralism, and that those movements not the revolutionary organization itself are the revolutionary agent of social transformation.

The revolutionary organization organizes within mass movements in order to contribute towards their power, always working towards the development of an autonomous class consciousness, capacity, and solidarity. Participating in mass struggle builds the capacity of the revolutionary organization and mass movements to take direct action and shift power relations. It allows both to experience collective power through struggle. The revolutionary organization proposes collective solutions to everyday problems whether that be directly confronting our oppressors or constructing alternative institutions against Capitalism and the State.

The revolutionary organization does this in order to build a social base for anti-authoritarian approaches towards social transformation that is rooted in the struggles of working class and oppressed people. The revolutionary organization works within mass struggles to combat isolation, share resources, extend mutual aid networks and link different struggles. It works within rank and file movements and mass organizations. It strives to counteract authoritarian, bureaucratic and reformist tendencies by advocating horizontal, directly democratic and revolutionary forms of organizing within mass movements.

The revolutionary organization in its movement work creates positive relationships with other sympathetic activists and organizations. It avoids public condemnation of sympathetic groups who use different tactics. In this way it can develop an active periphery of supporters and allies who find themselves in agreement with aspects of its work and ideas.


Internal Development & Education

The revolutionary organization develops its members through education and training in organizing skills as well as theory. It strives to empower its members to create and strengthen movements. The revolutionary organization is a school for learning and teaching the tools of social change as broadly as possible.

The revolutionary organization creates a space to cultivate and develop new conscious revolutionaries. It is a space for dialogue and discussion to continually build a shared analysis and the development of its members, supporters, and comrades from struggles. Where members can learn from others with different experiences.

The revolutionary organization does this work in order to build self-confidence, knowledge, skills and opportunities to practice these methods in social movements. For the revolutionary organization skill building is a permanent goal. The revolutionary organization is an organization of equals not a group with leaders and followers, so it is always striving to develop its members’ capabilities for struggle.

Popular Education & Propaganda

The revolutionary organization produces anti-authoritarian and educational propaganda. It does this through the creation of media that communicates the views and political perspectives of the organization. It promotes its views in print as well as online media, through public events and actions. The revolutionary organization strives to build a visible presence for its ideas, methods, and tactics in order to popularize a revolutionary culture.

The revolutionary culture the organization strives to promote is one of popular combativity, creativity, solidarity, mutual aid, anti-racist, internationalism, anti-patriarchy, anti-capitalist, and anti-state. It does this by developing agitational and education materials that convey these ideas. These materials have to be crafted in ways that appeal to diverse sections of the populace with varying educational skill sets. Materials should convey complex ideas in ways that are clear and stated in plain ways. Emphasis on posters, videos, art, graffiti, speaking events, all in connection with longer documents, magazines, and books. The revolutionary organization also does this by hosting social and cultural activities that broadly reflect the concepts and practice of the revolutionary organization and its’ members.


Strategic & Theoretical Coherence

The revolutionary organization is based on strategic and theoretical coherence. A clearly defined and shared political perspective and orientation. It has a common vision to guide joint activity and cooperation between its members. It is always working towards a clarification of our role. It strives to provide a forum for and promote a culture of discussion, analysis and debate in order to theorize and synthesize ideas on how to confront Capitalism, the State, and all other oppressions.

The revolutionary organization looks to the present historical moment to develop its thought, by reflecting on its participation in the social struggles of its day. In this way theory and strategy are informed directly from practice in struggles. It develops common goals and coordinates members’ efforts to achieve them. It develops tactical approaches to achieving strategic goals, while maintaining tactical flexibility to facilitate the adaptation of these goals to its regional and local circumstances. The revolutionary organization collectively reviews its successes and failures and tries to learn from them. Most importantly it is concerned with the real needs and tasks of day to day organizing. Revolutionary strategy and theory is taken from the experience of working directly within mass movements.

Organizational Culture of Accountability & Direct Democracy

The organizational principles of the revolutionary organization serve to strengthen its efficiency and effectiveness in developing our ideas and strategies within mass movements. The revolutionary organization is a tool of our members and sympathizers within mass movements. In order to do this the revolutionary organization must have an organizational culture of accountability and direct democracy. It practices this internally by operating as a direct democracy. Instead of representation the organization operates using delegation. Delegates and responsibilities are mandated by and instantly re-callable by the membership.

The revolutionary organization is also a political home for revolutionaries. A place for its membership to feel supported and safe. The revolutionary organization strives to achieve an internal organizational culture based on respect, principled behavior and accountability to each other that fights all forms of domination and oppression. It does this through an active practice of challenging all forms of oppression within ourselves, our relationships, and our organizations. This responsibility for maintaining an organizational culture of accountability is that of the entire membership. The membership is responsible for and accountable for the memberships’ actions. To do this the membership defines clear guidelines to pro-actively solve issues before they happen.





W, X, Y, & Z, Wednesday 19 September 2018

Against Professional Philosophy is a sub-project of the online mega-project Philosophy Without Borders, which is home-based on Patreon here.

Please consider becoming a patron!




Formerly Captain Nemo. A not-so-very-angry, but still unemployed, full-time philosopher-nobody.

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

Don’t Dedicate Your Life To Philosophy

The Deceitful Human Mind


An Open Letter to the University of Chicago Philosophy Department, Re: “Thinking And Being: A…

Philosophy of Science

In Matters of ECONO

About Self-Discipline

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Mr Nemo

Mr Nemo

Formerly Captain Nemo. A not-so-very-angry, but still unemployed, full-time philosopher-nobody.

More from Medium

Staying Informed on the Left: News and Media sources

Freedoms to Recognize

Mumbled Meditations #2