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Thursday, August 22, 2013

Women's subversive individualism in Barcelona during the 1930s (1992)

by Michael Seidman

The Anarcha-Feminism series, pamphlet n°5

This text was originally published in the International Review of Social History / Volume 37 / Issue 02 /

August 1992, pp 161-176.

A focus on politically uncommitted working-class women alters the traditional
historiographical emphasis on collective militancy in the Spanish Revolution. A large
number of females acted ambivalently towards the cause, and revolutionaries were forced
to confront women's individualism. In the search for the collective identities of class and
gender, this individualism has been ignored. Instead of neglecting or condemning the
personal, historians should try to understand how an exploration of the varieties of
subversive individualism – resistance to workplace discipline, opportunism, and petty fraud
– can expand the boundaries of social history and help to contribute to a theory of the


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