Longtime French anarchist scholar and activist Ronald Creagh died on September 8 at age 94.
He was in touch with anarchists and anti-authoritarians on several continents. Those who knew him personally appreciated his broad-minded openness and supportive spirit.
Some Fifth Estate staffers were among those who found him engaging and attentive in conversations on many subjects. In recent years he was a regular reader of our online current and past articles and enjoyed discussing them.
Ronald was born in Egypt in 1929, the son of a Lebanese mother and an English father. At the age of 18, in 1947, he moved to France with his mother.
After university, he held various teaching positions, and developed a specialty in research and writing about utopian communities in North America. In the 1970s he participated in several programs in U.S. universities and became friends with anarchist historian Paul Avrich and anarcho-syndicalists Esther and Sam Dolgoff. He came to identify with anti-authoritarian ideas and, especially after retiring, became actively involved with the Centre Internationale de Recherches sur l’Anarchisme (CIRA) anarchist archive in Lausanne, Switzerland and CIRA Marseille in France.
Ronald wrote more than thirty books of interest to anarchists, nearly all in French. He also wrote for and edited several libertarian journals, including Réfractions, Divergences (an online international journal), and the English language journal Anarchist Studies.
In 1995 he launched the multi-lingual anarchist archive website RA Forum, which he administered for more than twenty years. Comrades at CIRA Marseilles have taken on its admin chores, so its content is still available (archives.cira-marseille.info/raforum/ ).
Ronald was also very interested in radical music and art, and connected with surrealists in France and elsewhere. An article by him about surrealism in Egypt (“Libertarian Tempests”) can be found, in English, on theanarchistlibrary.org.