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Anarchism in Ukraine

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Anarchism in Ukraine dates to the 20th century, though it has roots in the peasant uprisings of Stenka Razin and Yemelyan Pugachev as well as the Zaporozhian Cossacks.

Anarchists were active in the Russian Revolution of 1905 and suffered repression following its failure. Maria Nikiforova was arrested at this time, as was Sasha Shapiro, father of the anarchist mathematician, Alexander Grothendieck[1]. Nestor Makhno and other anarcho-communists continued their attacks against aristocrats and capitalists throughout Ukraine.

Mahkno became active again after the Russian Revolution of 1917. Anarchist communes formed across Ukraine, many of them productive enough to exchange wheat for textiles with workers in Moscow. Mahkno fought with Bolsheviks against the White Army and, though he was later betrayed by many Bolshevik forces, formed the Free Territory with help from his Revolutionary Insurrectionary Army of Ukraine. The Free Territory existed only until June 1919, but in that time, communities operated successfully on the economic theories of Peter Kropotkin and educational principles of Francesc Ferrer i Guàrdia.Template:Verify source

Mahkno tried to defend the Free Territory against further attacks by the Bolshevik and White armies, but lost ground throughout 1920 and 1921. By the end of 1921, the anarchist groups in Ukraine had been arrested or dispersed. Mahkno fled to Romania, then Poland, and finally Paris, where he proposed organizational tactics based on what he had learned in Ukraine.


  • Arshinov, Peter. History of the Makhnovist Movement
  • Makhno, Nestor. Memoirs
  • Makhno, Nestor. The Struggle Against the State and Other Essays
  • Skirda, Alexander. Nestor Makhno: Anarchy's Cossack
  • Voline. The Unknown Revolution
  1. 'Comme Appelé du Néant: Part 1' by Allyn Jackson, Notices of the American Mathematical Society Vol. 51,No. 10, p1038 - 1056
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