Mutual Aid

Mutual Aid


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[002563] Kropotkin, Peter. Mutual Aid – A Factor of Evolution. London: William Heinemann, 1902. First Edition. 8vo. Hardback. Good / No Jacket. xix, [1], 348pp. Original cloth, title, author and publisher in gilt to spine, with title and author in gilt to upper cover, blind stamped device of publishers to centre of lower cover.

Slightly rubbed, especially to edges, edges of text block browned and foxed. Light foxing to first and last few pages, with a few spots throughout as usual, but generally fairly clean.

First English edition of Kropotkin’s important contribution to the evolutionary debate. Huxley’s ‘The Struggle for Existence in Human Society’, prompted Kropotkin to write a series of replies in ‘The Nineteenth Century’ magazine, which developed into ‘Mutual Aid’.

For Kropotkin, rather than competition, natural selection, “generated a historical tendency toward cooperation in nature, including human society before the emergence of the modern state. In both realms mutual aid was the chief source of evolutionary progress” (Todes, page 132).

For an excellent look at Kropotkin’s idea of mutual aid and the Russian intellectual background from where it developed see Todes, ‘Darwin Without Malthus’.

Adams, page 59; Stammhammer III:181:24 and Piro 267