Friday, December 09, 2011

Proudhon's "Celebration of Sunday," and other works-in-progress

You can see parts of three ongoing projects, as they appear, over on From the Libertarian Library. The most interesting is probably Pierre-Joseph Proudhon's The Celebration of Sunday, the book he wrote just before What is Property? It's a very interesting read, with something to tell us about a number of aspects of Proudhon's thought, and it's something I've been puttering away at for several months. I have posted a translation of the first quarter of the book, which is relatively short, and expect to have the second major section, which takes us up to about the halfway point, typed in and posted within the next couple of days. My hope is to be able to take a relatively polished translation of the whole work to this year's Bay Area Anarchist Bookfair (March 31-April 1), along with a revised and corrected edition of The Philosophy of Progress.

Among the other texts I'm hoping to have ready for the bookfair is Gray Light, by Paul Brown, the early American communist, friend of Josiah Warren, enemy of Robert Owen, etc. It is an interesting, sometimes frustrating, but also unjustly neglected work of more or less libertarian communism, which has not, as far as I can see, ever been published as a separate work, after its run in the New-Harmony Gazette. Its serial run was thirty-two installments, over parts of three years, and the originals are of poor enough quality that I'm having to type the whole thing in by hand, but I think it will be worth the trouble to begin to reestablish Brown in his proper place in our radical histories. Once Gray Light is finished, I have some essays from the Boston Investigator that I'll probably transcribe. You can get a taste of Brown's idiosyncratic style in the portions of Gray Light I have already uploaded.

The third in-progress project is a translation of Ravachol—the Man with the Dynamite, a popular fictional account of the life and deeds of the in/famous anarchist. I had begun to work on this about a year ago, when other things took precedence, and it's been hard to find an excuse to come back to it at all seriously. Among other things, it's a fairly massive tome, and there are a lot of more significant projects already in the queue. But I've been working hard to get together the first three issues of the forthcoming Corvus monthly, M. Courbeau's Gallery of Rogues, which will be a collection of biographical and autobiographical writings about anarchists and fellow travelers, and it struck me that a serial publication of the Ravachol book might be a fun addition to that project. So here we go. The first chapter is now online.

1 comment:

BerserkRL said...

I see that another author is also tackling the subject of the sabbath. I wonder whether his book will be as interesting as Proudhon's.