Anarchist publisher AK Press has released this DVD of two very important political documentaries: “Anarchism in America” and “The Free Voice of Labor: The Jewish Anarchists.” Enlightening and fascinating, these two films provide a look at a political viewpoint the mainstream media ignores as much as it misrepresents.
The first film, “Anarchism in America” is about director Steven Fischler and Joel Sucher’s journey around America (and Mexico) to visit with anarchists from all walks of life. They ask these people about the future of the movement, how they got involved in it, what impact it has had on their lives, and more. Everyone from the recently deceased Murray Bookchin to the Dead Kennedys are interviewed, and though this film came out in 1981, it still remains relevant today. If you have friends and family who know nothing about anarchism, this is the film to show them, as it also presents a great history lesson.
The second film, “The Free Voice of Labor: The Jewish Anarchists” is an uplifting film that serves as an inspiration for anarchists, though people with little knowledge of the movement may wonder what all the fuss is about.
The focus of the documentary is on a group of Jewish anarchists, many of whom worked on the newspaper “The Free Voice of Labor.” They are an aging group who have faced arrest, discrimination and violence (standard problems for most anarchists), but they haven’t given up hope. They continue to live their lives they way they see fit, and that should serve as a reminder to younger anarchists not to give up the fight even though your vision of the future hasn’t come to light by the time you turn twenty-five. (Another standard problem for many anarchists.)
This DVD is essential for anarchists and political junkies. The only thing missing is a current look at the anarchist movement (both these films were made well over a decade ago), but hopefully that will be a future project.