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WELLBROOK, Christopher. "Seething with the Ideal: Galleanisti and Class Struggle in Late Nineteenth-Century and Early Twentieth-Century USA"
Article published on 13 January 2010
last modification on 24 April 2010

by ps

WorkingUSA: The Journal of Labor and Society · Volume 12 · (September 2009) · pp. 403–420.

Author’s Abstract

It is the purpose of this article to initiate a reevaluation of the place of the Galleanisti and insurrectionary
anarchism in relation to working-class struggle. Regardless of the breadth and weight of anarchist philosophy,
the shady, bomb-throwing, wild-eyed, and bushy bearded fanatic is a caricature that still persists in
coloring the movement. Accordingly, historical accounts of the Galleanisti tend to emphasize the “extremism”
of their ideas as a means of accounting for the violence surrounding the group. I will highlight the
relatively unexceptional nature of Galleanisti in the context of tactics commonly employed by labor militants
of the era, the frequency of violence and revolutionary reprisal within leftist discourse, and the popularity and
influence of Galleanisti ideals. Through this, I intend to reposition the Galleanisti as a political tendency
situated within, articulating the demands of, and acting in defense of, their own working-class communities.