Emma Goldman

Emma Goldman (June 27, 1869 – May 14, 1940), was an anarchist known for her writings and speeches, one of the first to incorporate gender politics into anarchist philosophy. An urban legend holds that her ghost haunts the union hall on Spadina Avenue in Toronto, now a Chinese restaurant, where she often spoke and where her body was displayed after her death.
She worked as a corset maker and as a seamstress. She was introduced to revolutionary anarchist politics while working in the difficult conditions which were, and still are, prevalent in the textile industry.

Goldman publicly urged the unemployed, “Ask for work. If they do not give you work, ask for bread. If they do not give you work or bread, take bread.” She was imprisoned for one year for this offense, and while in prison trained as a nurse, a skill she put to use in the Lower East Side after her release. She was later jailed for distributing birth control literature. She saw abortion as a tragic consequence of social conditions, and birth control as a positive alternative. Her third imprisonment was for conspiring to obstruct the draft.
She was taken aside at a dance by a young revolutionary in the States and told he had not become an agitator to dance. “I insisted that our cause could not expect me to behave as a nun and that the movement should not be turned into a cloister. If it meant that, I did not want it. I want freedom, the right to self expression, everybody’s right to beautiful, radiant things.” “If I can’t dance, it’s not my revolution.” became a well known slogan for future generations of free thinkers.
In 1906, Emma Goldman published Mother Earth, a monthly journal in which she covered current affairs from an anarcha-feminist perspective, and reprinted essays by writers such as Nietzsche and the Christian anarchist Tolstoy. “Politically the human race would still be in the most absolute slavery were it not for the … innumerable individual giants who fought inch by inch against the power of kings and tyrants.”

I’d rather have roses on my table than diamonds around my neck. – Emma Goldman

categories: Emma Goldman, T-shirts

Emma Goldman

categories: Emma Goldman, Neckties