The Conquest of Bread by Peter Kropotin (Short Review)

Peter Kropotin’s classic work “The Conquest of Bread” is a must read for anyone pleased by petty-bourgeois idealism; a cornerstone of classical Anarchist theory, Kropotin’s short book focuses on emphasizes the labor and transition required to reach “Anarchist Communism.” Differentiated from the “Authoritarian Communism” of the Bolsheviks and socialists, Kropotin’s conception of communism entails an immediate jump to classless, moneyless society without an intermediate state. With each chapter focusing on a different part of society (Clothing, the Division of Labor, food production, luxury, etc) the author outlines his vision of producers producing for the local community as part of an attempt to bring commodity transactions to a form agreeable with the proletariat. Though an enlightening read for anyone interested in a starting primer on early Anarchist theories, the views contained within will not bring forth substantial change if implemented in reality; the premise of the concept is simply out of tune with the modern world that any attempt to make a transition to a post-capitalist society without a withering workers state, will sure to meet damnation. Nonetheless, as far as political economic writings go it is not as dense as Marx. Whether that is a good or a bad thing, I will leave to you.


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