In the mid 1990s when I was 18 and studying A-Levels in rural Lincolnshire one of my teachers told me about Freedom Bookshop and the newspaper. It seemed a long way away at the time. He had a stash of anarchist literature hidden away in the school and when he realised I was heading to London Guildhall Uni (now London Metropolitan Uni) he told me that the bookshop was just around the corner. I ended up visiting a few times over the three years I studied there and always got a copy of the paper. The last full regular issue is out now and the collective running the paper has taken the decision to operate online from now on. That brings to an end a physical publication that’s been running since 1886. Buy the last ever full paper issue!
The last issue has made me want more. I’m glad we’re not losing Freedom as an outlet for anarchist views because whilst it’s almost impossible to print relevant news stories on a monthly basis (as things change so quickly and people tend to get their news with more immediacy) the comment and range of articles in that final edition are fantastic. I’m not sure whether the new version will be updated regularly or have a set publication schedule but in whatever form it now takes I hope the collective seek to expand not just the range but also the depth of articles. Clearly getting more writers will be key to the new version. People interested in contributing can contact them via firstname.lastname@example.org
In the final edition there are articles on anarchist ideals regarding education, skip diving for food, civil rights, plus book and movie reviews. There’s also an article about evolutionary naturalism and social anarchism as well as updates from around the world. It’s a good read. I really hope Freedom prospers in its new form, not for the sake of nostalgia but for the sake of needing a journal that captures anarchism in its widest sense and one in which the ideas inherent in the philosophy and action of anarchism can be spread and understood better.
Here’s to the journal of anarchist socialism!