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0 votes
Let's say someone was raised in the middle class, or even the upper class, but as they grew older they realized that they did not like the current system of hierarchy and capitalism and they realized they agreed with anarchist philosophy.  Then they went on to abandon all ties to their middle or upper class lives somehow.  Would this person be accepted by other anarchists or would they be rejected because of their upbringing?

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You mean like Kropotkin or Bakunin?
As pointed out by lawrence: many of the "classic" theorists of anarchism came from affluent backgrounds, and/or were Princes of Russia.
the use of quotation marks around "allowed" in the initial question amkes me want to know what you mean exactly? I think I have two answers, I can give both, but I am curious about your intention.

may as well repost your comment as an answer, it covers the bases well, and has broad agreement of posters (which is odd.)

An Anarchist is a conspiracy of one; everyone else is just tagging along.
" has broad agreement of posters"

broad agreement? i must be missing something...
The "someone" you describe in your question is me...although I also realize now that I was in complete harmony with anarchist thought (and many actions) when I was young.

It's hard for me to say whether or not I am "accepted" by other anarchists, as I've never met anyone who has described themselves as such in person...all of my experience with other anarchists has been online.

I have, however, been rejected in many ways by people who are not anarchist and who were previously close to me (family, friends) - as a result of my belief in and expression of anarchy. This has been difficult for me. So, I am looking to find people who also believe in anarchy, and I certainly would not "reject" them for their class or upbringing within the hierarchy and I hope they wouldn't reject me. Regardless of that acceptance, I would still consider myself an anarchist, and that's what matters most to me.
boa (=  'bornagainanarchist',  well, we need some shorthand for your handle, since you're sticking around ;) :  a really good comment on the realities of self-acceptance vs. herd acceptance.

funky@:  ok, the 'agreement' was self-delusional; but your comment is still more extensive than the two answers, so just copy-paste the damn thing and save future readers the hazard of misdirection.  Please.
ok, clodbuster, you win. :-)
Thanks, clodbuster, for making that distinction about my comment, which I didn't realize until you pointed it out. Thanks for the shortened handle as well...even though it seems like it would be "baa", I like the sound of "boa" much better, and it gives me a feeling of acceptance here...maybe not self or herd in this case.   :)

3 Answers

–1 vote
Anarchist is an ideology, not exactly a sub-culture. If you have faith in anarchy, and are not afraid to admit it, then people who do not share your ideology will call you a anarchist.
A couple questions I would ask based on your answer:

What do you mean by ideology when you say anarchist is one?

In what way does this differ from subcultural identification?

Why is adhering to an ideology, as opposed to a subculture preferable?

Is there something other than ideology or subcultural identification? If so, what?

(asked entirely with good intent - these are things I think about, and I like to know what others think as well)
i can't speak to kilam's thoughts, but i'll try to speak to my own.

Anarchy/anarchism/anarchist spans many layers of social constructs (i never bothered with sociology, so i don't know the appropriate terms for the concepts here.)  
Anarchy could be considered an ideology of sorts, when we use it as an abstract, as a what-will-be after-the-revolution; though we constantly violate the ideological rules of blind faith.  Anarchist could be considered a sub-cultural identification, especially if viewed toward the typical hyphenated insular groups.  For those of us in between, the terms fade to meaninglessness; and seeking their trail yields us more confusion than meaning.
One thing does strike me, "then people who do not share your ideology will call you a anarchist" - i don't call myself an anarchist, because it is a part of my self not the entirety, but i don't shrink from the term when it is thrown against me, and i'll stand with those who wear the term, be it on the street or on the gallows.
+3 votes
Talking about anarchism in these terms makes it inherently useless. Being accepted by some group that calls themselves anarchists does not say anything about the group or the person joining it. It has been commonly known that many anarchist groups themselves have perpetuated hierarchical structures, which means they didn't understand the deeper points of anarchism. The only thing that's important is to understand them and act on them in ones own life, not to join a group of really snobby ideologues.
edited by anonymous
+4 votes
a few of the apparent assumptions embedded in the question with which i would take issue:

1. that there is some homogenous set of "other anarchists".

2. that these "other anarchists" will approve or reject someone based on the economic conditions of their upbringing (rather than their observed and observable behavior and ideas).

3. that being "accepted" by others that identify as anarchist is somehow evidence or substantiation for one's own anarchistic ideas and behaviors.

4. that severing ties with one's financial resources is somehow a way to express or prove one's anarchist leanings. (rather than, say, using those resources for one's own projects and/or those of allies).

anarchists come in many flavors; some might accept or reject another for their upbringing, some might not.

i would ask why being "accepted" is important in the context of creating one's own anarchic life? that seems like the predominant logic of this mass society of democrapitalism - why perpetuate it if something dramatically different is desired?

rather than worrying about acceptance/rejection, i myself would be much more interested in having conversations with individual anarchists, and finding where we have affinity, if any; and approaching my relationships from that perspective.

[changing this from a comment to an answer.]
by (13.4k points)
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