"[...] I regret for many reasons seeing pacifism and anarchism so closely associated in the popular mind.
Can we not guide our young enthusiasts, whose sincerity I appreciate and value, into wiser associations and lines of conduct?"
I've recently come to learn that anarchist writers helped defend and promote the hybrid notion of leftist sexuality in the United States — a fact upon which I've built my thesis. With that in mind, I find irony in the fact that Dana — a gay man with socialist and pacifist affiliations — received a letter from Virginia Gildersleeve — the Dean of Barnard College, who was herself quite radical in her own right — about a student's controversial affiliations (please see next post).
As a point of curiosity, then, how is it that socialism and anarchism have both historically found affiliations with pacifism? Was this a general lumping of all subversive ideology, or could pacifism somehow be conceived of as a bridge between the two political philosophies?
Is pacifism a part of some larger missing link that would help explain the way "third sex" socialists in Europe corresponded with American anarchists? Or was the only thing the two activist groups had in common their investment in free love and sexual liberation — and with it, an interest in a peaceable (perhaps Utopian) society that would allow it?
In connection to my last post, it seems there was a divide between conscientious objectors who still followed the rule of law and those who practiced civil disobedience (perhaps sullying the law-abiding image of the pacifist movement that the former worked to maintain).
Box 1 [Reel 71.1] Folder 1, Pages 37a-b: Correspondence from Virginia C. Gildersleeve of Barnard College,
in the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow Dana Papers (DG 011), Swarthmore College Peace Collection.