The amazing story of The Anarchist Blacksmith

UmbertoSee film preview.  An Anarchist Life, Italy (English subs).

The amazing story of The Anarchist Blacksmith

It is a model story, an extraordinary adventure, a tale of revolutionary practice and tension, among anarchy and irony, simplicity, curiosity and vitality all throughout Europe, its wars and the social struggles of the 1900s. It is a story on how to live all in one breath, responsibly, diving into contradictions, “getting one’s hands dirty”, and still keeping one’s balance between theory and practice….

If you want to support the documentary project of Umberto Tommasini you can pre-purchase a copy on DVD at a cost of anarchist_dvd10 euro. The DVD will be available after completion of production, is important for us every single contribution.

  • Runtime: 52′   Price: € 10,00
  • Websites:, Anarchistlife @ Twitter, Anarchistlife @ Facebook
  • Worker, fighter, militant, prisoner, conspirator, soldier, confined, bomber, escaped … this and much more is Umberto Tommasini, blacksmith anarchist, travelling through the twentieth century driven by human energy and a contagious vitality. He is living in empathy with the world around him but at the same time he questions it totally. An approach is nowadays very rare.

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    …It is the story of Umberto Tommasini, a blacksmith born in 1896 in Vivaro a small village in Friuli in the Italian Kingdom. It is the story of a migration to Trieste, Austro-Hungarian territory, of a socialist family made up of a father and 4 brothers. A family that already in Vivaro has stirred it up opening the first social library in one of the two rooms that made up the family house. Later Umberto throws himself into protest demonstrations, until he ends up enlisted in cop-Tommasinithe Italian Army and then in Caporetto.

    First shooting up in the air hoping to miss the “enemy” and then spending time in prison camps, he walks through the Great War , getting back to Trieste just in time to clash with the first fascist squads in heated and direct social uprising. He is one of the first to end up in political confinement, first in Ponza, and then in Ventotene. Here he meets antifascist characters such as Gramsci, Di Vittorio and Bordiga whom he treats as his equal, without any awe.
    Umberto’s story is at times epic, as in his runaway to his exile in Paris, or even when finally his dream of a libertarian revolution comes true in Spain, where the people rebels against Franco’s fascist coup d’état .
    It is here, in Barcelona, that Umberto finds his second home among the anarchic volunteers from all over Europe, next to the other antifascists elements: communists, socialists and liberals. However soon the dream of unity shatters and the dominant approach of the communists prevails, the revolutionary longings of the anarchists are crushed, ending up in repression and even in the killing of Camillo Berneri in the streets of Barcelona.
    Umberto is forced to retreat, he travels back to France, again in exile, Confinement, and then again in Trieste. Here he continues to keep alive the torch of anarchy, in hard times for the movement, times oppressed by the domination of the las13rosas 3Communist Party on masses and consciences.

    Until in 1968 libertarian attitudes and approaches re-emerge in the new generations. Together with these twenty-year-olds Umberto, already in his seventies, founds the Anarchic Group Germinal.
    Beyond the charm of adventure and of Umberto’s magnetic personality, we tell the story of a man of the people who experiences History on himself all in one breath and without compromises, and joins in bringing it about together with many others. Such immediacy, clearness, completeness and fullness of life make us wonder why is it that today such a life would seem so difficult.


Presentation of the book “anarquista de Trieste, Un indignat del segle XX” by Umberto Tommasino  (In Catalan, no English available)

On Wednesday 30 November a las 19:00, took place at  The FELLA C / Joaquin Costa 34, lower the presentation of  book anarquista de Trieste, Un indignat del segle XX by Umberto Tommasino published books enrollment , an autobiography between Trieste and Barcelona anarchist blacksmith, edited Claudio Venz, which includes an interview with Claudio Magris

Memories of Umberto Tommasino (Trieste 1896-1980) show the human side of a century of conflict, the Great War movement of 68, including his experience in revolutionary Barcelona in 1936. He has the look of a man committed to libertarian ideals, but especially to people because Tommasino fundamentally believes in the need for human dignity above ideas, which will be demonstrated in each one of the episodes of his intense life.

You can download the book the L’anarchico triestino  (in Italian) from the site you can download in PDF format, the entire edition of the biography of Umberto Tommasini, published in 1984 by Antistato editions and edited by Claudio Venza and Clara Germani. Just go to the search box in the upper right corner and write “Umberto Tommasini.” Who has the patience to read the more than five hundred printed pages of the file you will be faced with an incredible book, a testimony of oral history without mediation, from which emerges the figure of a man always consistent but very human. Note: the book is in the dialect of Trieste, for those who want to try, there is also a recent edition translated into Italian, and reduced in some parts, published by Odradek with the title “The blacksmith anarchist.” Also out now in Catalan

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