What's the difference between anarchists and communists?

What's the difference between anarchists and communists?

(I'm being genuine, I'm new to leftypol so pls be nice)

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Anarchists are communists.
Marxists are communists.
Anarchists are not Marxists.


To my knowledge, anarchism just means the absence of hierarchy.

The practical implementation of anarchy exists in different forms, such as anarchist-communist/syndicalist/etc.

Communists (advocates of a classless, stateless and moneyless social order) can broadly be split along the lines of Marxists (who want the working class to seize the
state in a revolution so as to eliminate the bourgeoisie and thus secure the development of socialism so that communism can be achieved) and Anarchists (who want the working class to destroy the state so as to build socialism and secure the development of communism.)

seize the state
destroy the state

They both want the same end goal, but the approaches of getting there are different.

One wants to seize the state and the other wants to destroy it.


Anarchists want to destroy hierarchy (or more accurately they want to destroy the system of hierarchy - bosses and rulers and all that). In other words, they want a classless, stateless society, so they're pretty much communists (most of the time), they just have different opinions on the 'why' and 'how' of things.

what you should be asking OP is, what do leftcoms want?

we're not sure

To add: The ideas and philosophical basis for anarchism and marxism are very different (idealist vs materialist, etc.)
Honestly, your best bet is to just read both.

Syndicalism is not necessarily communist although many Syndicalists are probably also communists

So I know this is the division but what if I want to carefully dismantle, rather than destroy the state, but without seizing the state?

Communists believe the state can be used to bring about a stateless society: the state is a product of material conditions and they propose to use the state to change those conditions with the aim of the state gradually disappearing.

Anarchists do not believe this and believe a stateless society can only be brought about by either destroying it directly or creating autonomous democratic bodies that will come to replace it.

This is wrong.

What is an Anarcho-Communist then?

Marxists believe that a state must be used while capitalism is still the dominant mode of production in the world. Their aim is to construct the socialist state so that the interests of the dominant class–the proletariat–will cause them to dismantle the state piece by piece thus eliminating not only the state but also the bourgeois class that will be contained within that state.

Marxists want to seize the state and transition to communism using the state. The majority of conflicts within Marxism are how to seize the state and what a socialist state would be like.

Anarchists want to destroy the state and transition to communism in a variety of methods. The majority of conflicts within anarchism is whay these methods are.

Read both and make up your mind. Anarchists are right about the chance of the state fucking up the revolution and Marxists are right about Anarchists historically being disadvantaged against imperialist powers.

Anarchism is the lack of involuntary hierarchical structures, such as the state or religious entities.

Communism is merely an economics system that might exist in an anarchy.

That was back then. Nowdays if any european country became anarchist, i doubt they would be invaded.

Also, it's important to keep in mind that not all anarchists favor socialism. There are market-based flavors of anarchists, like AnCaps and there are also Mutualists.

Some aren't tho (mutualists, collectivists, primitivists, individualists…)

That's still destroying it, just, slower, and maybe less ensured that your progress won't be voted away.

Anarchists are the ones that get purged first after Communists seize power

Anarchists want the same results as communists, but anarchists don't want to get their hands dirty.

It's hard to count ancaps when they specifically want hierarchy, but, despite everyone at /anarcho/'s opinion if there was an ancap dystopia next to my commune I wouldn't complain, they'd all just quit their jobs to come work with me anyways.

Nope. We communists want to destroy the state as well – the bourgeois state.
The bourgeois state is not to fade away it is to be destroyed… by the proletarian state.

that's the kind of spirit i like to see

we're all gonna make it

communism, ideally

replacing one form of state with another form of state is still a state

Which will then be removed. I'm not sure why he implied the proletarian state would stay around when it would become quickly unnecessary because
but hey

What would some key philosophical texts from each school be?

by who? the proletariat itself?

that sure has worked through history :^)

Oh jeez, maybe that's why I'm an anarchist and not a leninist? Huh. Oh. Hmm.


Definitely this for ancom
And, I want to say capital for marxists but I'm sure an actual marxist knows something better to start with than that.

I obviously don't think it's the best idea because, I'm an anarchist, but I'm not going to just pretend like I don't know what marxists want.

That's not Stirner

that stirner was pretty spooked

Anarchy and communism are the same thing. Its the path to communism which is dark.

tfw nobody gets your le epig name pun


“… If you look at the last chapter of my Eighteenth Brumaire, you will find that I declare: the next French Revolution will no longer attempt to transfer the bureaucratic-military apparatus from one hand to another, but to smash it, and this is the precondition for every real people’s revolution on the Continent.”
- Marx, Karl and Engels, Frederick, Selected Correspondence (Moscow), p.247.

Indeed. What I wanted to point out is the fact that we want to destroy the bourgeois state just as much as anarchists do.

The gatling gun was still a recent invention when Marx died. Standing armies were still not ubiquitous. The airplane and the airship had not been invented yet. Chemical warfare, radio, semi-automatic infantry carbines, sub-machine guns, and tanks were twenty years in the future. The carbon combustion engine and the submarine were a novelty. Fifty years later long-range missiles, nuclear weapons, aircraft carriers, military helicopters, strategic bombers, and radar would just be coming into use.

The very nature of military power changed in the fifty years following Marx's death. In the 1880s it had only begun to show glimpses of the massive industrial machine that it was soon to become. That is to say nothing of the changes that it underwent during the Cold War with the advent of guided missiles, data links, satelites, ICBMs, jet fighters, air cavalry, and special forces. Guys with guys are just not an army anymore.

Great typo. "Guys with guns."