Murray Bookchin

Murray Bookchin
BornJanuary 14, 1921
DiedJuly 30, 2006
Era20th / 21st-century philosophy
RegionWestern Philosophy
Schoolfounder of social ecology
Main interests
Social ecology, libertarian municipalism, social hierarchy, dialectics, post-scarcity anarchism, libertarian socialism, communalism, ethics, history of popular revolutionary movements
Notable ideas
social ecology, libertarian municipalism, dialectical naturalism
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Murray Bookchin (January 14, 1921 – July 30, 2006)[4] was an American libertarian socialist, political and social philosopher, speaker and writer. For much of his life he called himself an anarchist, although as early as 1995 he privately renounced his identification with the anarchist movement.[5] A pioneer in the ecology movement,[6] Bookchin was the founder of the social ecology movement within libertarian socialist and ecological thought. He was the author of two dozen books on politics, philosophy, history, and urban affairs as well as ecology.

Bookchin was a radical anti-capitalist and always favored the decentralisation of society. His writings on libertarian municipalism, a theory of face-to-face, grassroots democracy, had an influence on the Green Movement and anti-capitalist direct action groups such as Reclaim the Streets. His criticisms of "new age" Greens such as Charlene Spretnak contributed to the divisions in the American Green movement in the 1990s.

Although an anti-capitalist, Murray Bookchin often met with libertarian thinker Murray Rothbard and occasionally attended Libertarian Party (United States) conventions, endorsing their Presidential candidate Roger MacBride in 1976.

Bookchin has influenced the thinking of captured Kurdish militant Abdullah Öcalan, who has renounced violence and now wants a peaceful solution to the question of Kurdish autonomy.

Libertarian municipalism

Bookchin was the first to use the term "Libertarian municipalism", to describe a system in which libertarian institutions of directly democratic assemblies would oppose and replace the State with a confederation of free municipalities.[7] Libertarian municipalism intends to create a situation in which the two powers — the municipal confederations and the nation-state — cannot coexist.

Related pages





  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Bookchin, Murray. The Ecology of Freedom. Oakland: AK Press, 2005. p.11 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Bookchin" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Bookchin" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Bookchin" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Bookchin" defined multiple times with different content
  2. [1] Small, Mike. ‘’Murray Bookchin: US political thinker whose ideas shaped the anti-globalisation movement’’. ‘’’The Guardian’’’ August 8 2006
  3. Bookchin, Murray. The Philosophy of Social Ecology: Essays on Dialectical Naturalism. Montreal: Black Rose Books, 1996. p.57-9
  4. Small, Mike. Murray Bookchin The Guardian August 8, 2006
  5. [2] Biehl, Janet. "Bookchin Breaks with Anarchism". Communalism October 2007: 1.
  6. John Muir Institute for Environmental Studies, University of New Mexico, Environmental Philosophy, Inc, University of Georgia, ‘‘'Environmental Ethics’’’ v.12 1990: 193.
  7. Libertarian Municipalism: An Overview

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