This work asks - and attempts to answer - several basic questions that attract Leftists today. Will anarchism remain a revolutionary social movement or become a chic boutique lifestyle subculture? Will its primary goals be the complete transformation of a hierarchical, class, and irrational society into a libertarian communist one? Or will it become an ideology focused on personal well-being, spiritual redemption, and self-realization within society? In an era of privatism, kicks, and postmodernist nihilism, the author examines the growing nihilistic trends that threaten to undermine the revolutionary tradition of anarchism and co-opt its fragments into a harmless personalistic, yuppie ideology of social accommodation that presents threat to the existing powers-that-be. It should appeal to radicals in the postmodern age - socialists as well as anarchists, for whom the Left may seem in hopeless dissaray.
Murray Bookchin is cofounder of the Institute for Social Ecology. An active voice in the ecology and anarchist movements for more than forty years, he has written numerous books and articles, including: Anarchism, Marxism and the Future of the Left, Social Anarchism or Lifestyle Anarchism, The Spanish Anarchists, The Ecology of Freedom, Urbanization Without Cities, and Re-enchanting Humanity. He lives in Burlington, Vermont.