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+1 vote
This question is broad, I know. Therefore, I will focus on some aspects of the theory that I do not understand, by giving a fictive examples.

Suppose that we lived in a village or town (doesn't matter) and that all teachers of schools decided not teaching to a particular groups (e.g. women), and that teachers are consciously aware that they do it for keeping there group (men) of keeping control of things, keeping the resources, etc. (so they understand that they do it in a selfish way, it is not a mere spook).

I know that Stirner would not find this situation fundamentally immoral (and I have no problem with it). But what would be his position on that. Clearly, this is not what anarchist want to achieve, since it is a situation of flagrant authority. However, authority, by itself, is not immoral in egoist views.

Or take another example. Suppose a person come to hospital in very bad shape (he'll die if we do anything) and that he cannot affords for health care. Suppose further that the physician doesn't want to help him and let him die. What would be a egoist anarchist view here. It doesn't feel to me, like anarchism at all ...

So, I know that my questions are not so clear; I just have a difficulties understanding how egoist anarchist can be anarchist at all, while, on the other hand, I see a lot of interesting thing, like Union of egoist, and, more so, the notion of spooks.
by (130 points)
Do you even Stirner?

i edited this to make it a comment.

2 Answers

+1 vote
the point of Stirner, as i understand him, is to promote active engagement in our lives and in our ideas. to create (or perhaps to celebrate) fighters rather than passive people, or people who are full of ressentiment (although the latter could certainly be considered fighters also, just kind of gross ones). stirner also was reflecting that this is the way the world *is*, even if we are encouraged to act like it is some other way. so people actually DO act out of self interest, but we pretend that we don't, and we cover it up with socially acceptable lies.
it seems like your examples mix the time frames. it is one thing to acknowledge that we are impacted every day in this messed up system by people who are acting upon us to get what they want and need. it is another thing to want a world in which people recognize their own power/initiative/autonomy and become better active agents in their own lives, within a larger context that doesn't punish people for doing that.
there are people who understand stirner better than i do, and people who identify as egoists, and i hope that one or more of them will make my answer obsolete.
by (52.9k points)
+2 votes
Well there isn't just one position an egoist anarchist could take on those examples you gave, so I'll give you a few examples to give you an idea. One position they could take is that they could ignore the situation if it has nothing to do with them or anyone they care about, but if it does have something to do with them or anyone they care about they could concern themselves with the situation (and the specifics of what they would do in response to the situation would depend on the egoist anarchist responding). Now, it is the case that even if it doesn't have anything to do with them or anyone they care about they could if they so desired concern themselves with the situation (and obviously the reasons they are concerning themselves with the situation would depend on the egoist anarchist involved), they could also (and this could relate to that last one) pretend to concern themselves or not concern themselves with the situation if it in some way benefits them (and of course there is no objective idea of what benefits an egoist anarchist and so that is left completely to the individual egoist). There are also Egoist anarchist who have desired to either destroy this way of life (State, Capitalism, Society, Civilization, etc) or if they didn't think that was very likely they desired to live in an intense conflictual way with this world (because they despised this way of life) and either of these two camps might concern themselves with those situations or not depending they want to, if they decide to they might in some way attack some manifestation of those situations (the school, the individuals who control the resources, the hospital, the doctor, etc) or they could partake in some other venture against those situations if they wanted to. Not all of these positions are mutually exclusive, and of course there are probably more positions an egoist anarchist could take that I have not thought of while writing this.

The purpose of that tedious list of positions that an egoist anarchist could  take was to show that Egoist anarchism is very open ended and that it is very hard to pinpoint what any specific egoist anarchist would do in any given situation. Also it makes sense to say that there is also not only one type of egoist anarchism, there have always been many expressions of it.  Now, I don't want to describe all of the specific egoist anarchisms that have existed in detail, but I can give you names of the various egoist anarchists so you can see for yourself the various manifestations of it, John Henry Mackay, Benjamin Tucker, John Beverley Robinson, Émile Armand, Miguel Giménez Igualada, James L. Walker, Renzo Novatore, Bruno Filippi,  Enzo Martucci (also went by Enzo da Villafiore, Lev Chernyi, early S.E. Parker (later on he changed his position to an egoist Archist, which is the exact opposite of egoist anarchist),  the Bonnot Gang and other Illegalists, Enrico Arrigoni (also went by Frank Brand), Alfredo M. Bonanno, Feral faun/Wolfi Landstreicher/apio ludd (pseudonyms of the same person), and I'm sure there are others in which I forgot or who i don't know about.  There is obliviously qualities all versions of it have shared, such as rejection of the state, religion, morality, society, obligations, fixed ideas (ideologies), etc and the pursuit of what Stirner calls Owness making ones life ones own despite of all the claims made against it, but the way this manifests and how each egoist anarchist has decided exist in and against this world is unique to each individual.
by (160 points)
For example i  am an egoist anarchist who does not praise chaos and who thinks that insurrectionary anarchism is foolish self sacrifice for the Informal Anarchist Federation.
To iconoclast: And I'm an egoist anarchist that finds your name to be ironic foolishness.  Smash idols with the exclusion of violent expression?  Sounds like busting a nut, which sounds destructive with something getting busted, but is really just blowing wads into a gym sock.
I am not an egoist anarchist, or a insurrectionist anarchist, or a social anarchist. Egoism is often associated with Max Stirner, insurrectionist anarchism is often associated with Alfredo M. Bonanno, and social anarchism is associated usually with Murray Bookchin.

I distance myself the furthest with Bookchin, and I mostly think Bonanos' writing's to be very boring, and I basically agree with Stirner, but it bothers me how so many people seem to idealize him: for me he's just another theorist/ thinker, and not anymore particularly profound than many others. That's not to dismiss him, or to say he's unimportant. His writings are very, very interesting. Stirner's influence on my own thinking is extreme, and one of the many reasons I dislike icons.

With that in mind, I appropriate aspects from social anarchists (having nothing to do with Bookchin, who by the way eventually abandoned calling himself an anarchist), from insurrectionists ( Bonano bores me, but I don't really disagree with him, and writers aside I want insurrection), and egoist theory, because the emphasis on being unique, and breaking with standardization I find very appealing as a way to approach the world. I don't like ideology, and thus dislike egoism. Stirner's influence on my own thinking is extreme, and one of the many reasons I dislike icons.
The previous comment was accidentally published as I was rewriting, and reducing it, so seems like a repetitious ramble. This is more likeI wanted to share: I appropriate idea's and aspects from everywhere, and not only from anarchism. I am an Insurrectionist, social Anarchist (this having absolutely nothing to do with Murray Bookchin) who distances himself from egoism precisely because Stirner's influence on my own thinking is extreme, and one of the many reasons I dislike icons and ideology.
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