Black and white photograph of American anarchist Emma Goldman.

Emma Goldman

(1869 - 1940)

Born in Lithuania in 1869, Emma Goldman immigrated to the U.S. in 1885, was arrested for inciting a riot in 1893, founded the periodical Mother Earth in 1906, and published Anarchism and Other Essays in 1910. She lectured on the importance of European playwrights, among them Henrik Ibsen and August Strindberg, and on the concept of free love. Goldman was jailed in 1917 for her activities in opposition to U.S. involvement in World War I and one U.S. soldier caught shaking hands with the “Queen of the Anarchists” was court-martialed, dishonorably discharged, and sentenced to five years’ hard labor. She was deported to the Soviet Union in 1919 and died in 1940.

All Writing

No great idea in its beginning can ever be within the law.

—Emma Goldman, 1917

Religion! How it dominates man’s mind, how it humiliates and degrades his soul. God is everything, man is nothing, says religion. But out of that nothing God has created a kingdom so despotic, so tyrannical, so cruel, so terribly exacting that naught but gloom and tears and blood have ruled the world since gods began.

—Emma Goldman, 1910

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