William Powell, author of The Anarchist Cookbook, RIP


Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/03/31/william-powell-author-of-the.html


The Anarchist Cookbook has some recipes that will kill you. The advice in Steal This Book is far more helpful and relevant. Steal This Book now has a modern wiki counterpart, well worth checking out.


I understand that the current opinion from anarchists is “The Anarchist Cookbook has absolutely nothing to do with anarchism”

It could be called The Fascist Cookbook and still be just as accurate a title.


There were the usual conspiracy theories that the book was a plant by “Them” and the mistakes were deliberate.


Half-assed recipies written by high 19 year old and friends… Simplest and best explanation. Brb, making thermite.


As someone who sympathizes with Anarchism aims of a world without gods or masters, I can agree.

Anarchism as a political goal is not disorder, chaos or nihilism. It’s having political, social and economic organization based around free participation.

This can be difficult in practice for us sometimes-collaborative, sometimes-competitive primates; no one has cracked it yet.


Powell wrote the book when he was 19 and disavowed it later in life after becoming a Christian.

Wait… so… Christians shouldn’t teach people how to make bombs?


The freeloaders should learn it on their own! /s


Who would Jesus bomb?


The three wise men were carrying a balm.


Yeah, I half suspected it of being a false-flag op aimed at eliminating and exposing anarchists by giving them really shitty procedures for making nitroglycerine.

(A number of the recipes in that book are Really Bad Ideas, but the nitroglycerine recipe is a real doozy, more of a “how to blow yourself up using common household chemicals” than anything else.)


William Powell?


What is its “limbs per anarchist” ratio?


I recall reading an interview with him a few years back, he had some really interesting insights over who owns the current publishing rights to the book.

Edit: Here’s an article, it talks a bit about the guy that’s currently the owner of the rights to the book. He sounds like a scum bag that profits off of other similar titles.


I would actually say it has many recipes that will kill you.

Regardless, I still love the copy I picked up 30 years or so ago. It provided many hours of fun reading.


Yes, this was one of the good recipes!

Had lots of fun with ammonium triiodide in college.

Not sure that a tincture would work, though. We scabbed the pure element from chemistry lab.


He must have refrained from following the instructions in his book if he made it this long.

The Anarchist Cookbook has some recipes that will kill you
Yeah -- the amount of salt in many of the recipes! And butter! Entire sticks sometimes! Oh, wait, I'm actually thinking of Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking -- I always get those two cookbooks mixed up.


Bought mine at the little newsstand/convenience store/liquor store near my high school workplace and, honestly, I didn’t need to try any of the recipes in the book. I just wanted to see what all the kerfuffle was about, and to my way of thinking it didn’t amount to much more than titillation and fear. Also gave me a positive view of the people who owned the shop that they’d carry such a title (alongside Penthouse and Playboy, but still).

Place next to their shop made the best garlic bread I’ve ever had, drenched in butter, oil, mozzarella, big chunks of garlic all over it…jonesing for garlic bread now…


I would be interested in a real anarchists cookbook.

Of course, your ingredients would be limited to what you can get by skipping/dumpster diving, to avoid paying any money to capitalists.