Definition of Anarchy

Sarah asks “Sorry if I missed this somewhere on your site, I’ve only skimmed through a couple of the questions, but what is your general definition of anarchy? And, what are you imagining that a world with anarchy would look like? I’m not sure if your definition of anarchy is the one I typically imagine when I hear the word (it sounds like probably not 🙂 Thanks! Interesting site!”

The greek origin of the word “Anarchy” means “without ruler.” Anarchists today generally think of it more generally as “without any hierarchies of power” so that also includes being against forms of oppression that give some groups more power like racism, sexism, classism, ablism, etc.
We at Ask an Anarchist believe in one broad branch of anarchism generally called “social anarchism” that has a few principles describing what it is for:

Social Anarchism – A vision of shared resources and community support built around the empowerment of the individual and the decentralization of power.

  • Individual Sovereignty – You are the exclusive controller of your body, energy, and life. You contribute your energy on your own terms.
  • Mutual Aid – Acting together for shared benefit through the voluntary exchange of resources and services.
  • Distributed Power – No one has more power than anyone else. People work together on equal footing.
  • Direct action – Creating change or highlighting issues in a community without relying on government or other indirect methods to accomplish goals.