- All Best Essays, Term Papers and Book Report

Why Anarchists Reject the State

Essay by   •  November 11, 2012  •  Essay  •  557 Words (3 Pages)  •  673 Views

Essay Preview: Why Anarchists Reject the State

Report this essay
Page 1 of 3

Anarchists, unlike any other ideology, reject the state. They're aim is to live in a stateless society, allowing all people to be able to live freely and autonomously, without being oppressed by the state. Anarchists reject the state for two reasons, the first being that they believe it is evil, and the second being that they believe it is unnecessary.

Anarchists believe that the state is evil for a number of reasons. The state is an association that establishes sovereign power within a defined territorial area, usually possessing a monopoly of coercive power. Anarchists see the authority that the state has to be evil and corrupting as it is an offence against the principles of equality and freedom. This offence causes the oppression and limits people's lives, not allowing us to be free, autonomous individuals. Anarchism particularly critiques political authority, especially when it is supported by the structures that help the modern state to function, such as the government. They see the power that the state holds to be absolute, meaning that laws can restrict public behaviour, activity and interfere with our morality and thinking. They also see it as compulsory and coercive, meaning individuals are subject to political authority, not through a voluntary 'public contract' but by being born into a particular country, or through conquest, and if we feel that we do not want to abide by this we are threatened by the laws in place to punish us. The state is also seen as exploitative and destructive as it robs us of our own property through taxation, but then also expects us to die in a war at the expense of others or over an issue of territory or glory. With these characteristics, it is clear to see how incompatible the state is with the beliefs of an anarchist, as we cannot have our freedom with this authority in place.

Again, unlike the traditional view, anarchists see the state as unnecessary. Every other ideology would argue that the state is necessary in one way or another, to maintain order and harmony within society. Locke and Hobbs view of the state is pessimistic of human nature. They argued that we must have state in order to keep order and structure, otherwise we would attack each other and would live in a chaotic society. However, anarchists side with the opposing view from Godwin. He came up with the argument that actually we can create order naturally from our nature, none has to be instigated and forced upon us. His optimistic view of human nature is the same that has been adopted by anarchists who believe we have the potential to behave well, but they are deeply pessimistic of the influence of political authority and economic inequality brought about by the state. Anarchists believe that it is due to our political and social surroundings that decide whether we can be good or evil and can change people who could have previously been cooperative into oppressive tyrants. Anarchists put forward the alternate



Download as:   txt (3.3 Kb)   pdf (56.3 Kb)   docx (9.7 Kb)  
Continue for 2 more pages »
Only available on
Citation Generator

(2012, 11). Why Anarchists Reject the State. Retrieved 11, 2012, from

"Why Anarchists Reject the State" 11 2012. 2012. 11 2012 <>.

"Why Anarchists Reject the State.", 11 2012. Web. 11 2012. <>.

"Why Anarchists Reject the State." 11, 2012. Accessed 11, 2012.