Anarchism is a political philosophy that advocates self-governed societies based on voluntary institutions. These are often described as stateless societies, although several authors have defined them more specifically as institutions based on non-hierarchical free associations. Anarchism considers the state to be undesirable, unnecessary and harmful, because anarchists generally believe that human beings are capable of managing their own affairs on the basis of creativity, cooperation and mutual respect, and when making individual decisions they are taking into account the concerns of others and the well-being of society. While anti-statism is central, anarchism entails opposing authority or hierarchical organisation in the conduct of all human relations.
Anarchism draws on many currents of thought and strategy. Anarchism does not offer a fixed body of doctrine from a single particular world view, instead fluxing and flowing as a philosophy. Many types and traditions of anarchism exist, not all of which are mutually exclusive. Anarchist schools of thought can differ fundamentally, supporting anything from extreme individualism to complete collectivism. Strains of anarchism have often been divided into the categories of social and individualist anarchism or similar dual classifications. Anarchism is usually considered a radical left-wing ideology, and much of anarchist economics and anarchist legal philosophy reflect anti-authoritarian interpretations of communism, collectivism, syndicalism, mutualism or participatory economics.
This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Anarchism" as of 17 Aug 2016, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.