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Currently showing posts tagged anarchism

  • "Harm-Reduction Voting: Is That an Anarchist at the Polls?" by Nani Ferreira-Mathews

    Nani Ferreira-Mathews is a Jewish-American author, journalist, musician, and activist of indigenous Hawaiian descent. She was an organizer during the most radical days of the Occupy Wall Street movement in New York City. Originally from Georgia, she now lives in Baltimore, Maryland. She is the author of Birthright? Travelogue of an American Radical in Israel/Palestine.

    ***

    I don’t vote. Shame me wildly and publicly.

    It’s midterm election time. If you haven’t heard about it yet, you are fast asleep at the wheel of the sinking ship that is US society. There is a gubernatorial race in Maryland and there are more signs plastered around Baltimore City that read “Vote Democrat” than there are for the actual candidates for Governor. Once again, the Democrats are begging for party-pride on what’s been deemed another “vital midterm election.” It’s politics as usual, but in the age of Trump, more and more radical voices are joining in.

    As this year’s midterm election approaches, even anarchists are heading to the polls, and many are doing so thanks to the logic of harm-reduction voting, which is the latest rebranding of “lesser-evil voting.” Seperate from electoral concerns, the harm-reduction philosophy has roots in the social justice movement for the rights of drug users. One of the movement’s main principles is the understanding that while drug-use is dangerous, it is inevitable, and that there are some ways of using drugs that are safer than others. Needle exchanges are an example of harm-reduction in practice. In line with this principle, some voters are choosing to enact their limited power in a an oppressive system by voting for the candidates they hope are least likely to fuck up the world.

    I think most people would agree without much of a fight  that so-called “representative democracy” in the US is a filthy oligarchy owned and operated by corporate/political interest lobbyists who somewhere at some point, paid for or manipulated your squeaky-clean candidate.

    Actually, there might  be some fighting from Bernie Sanders fans on this, but hear me out. On April 27, 2017, he and every senator signed a letter to the UN demanding an end to anti-Israel bias at the United Nations. That letter was sponsored by AIPAC, American Israel Public Affairs Committee, and demanded that the United Nations eliminate any committee that had any affiliation with the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement, a non-violent Palestinian-led peace movement started in 2005 with the goal of ending international support of Israel’s oppression of Palestinians.

    Yeah, even your boy Bernie caved to the lobby, selling out some of the most vulnerable and besieged communities on Earth in order to appease Israel, a nuclear power and apartheid state. And this week, Cory Booker (another member of the supposedly “progressive” wing of the Democratic Party) callously used the shooting and mass murder at a Pittsburgh synagogue as justification for his supporting the Israel Anti-Boycott Act. According to Modoweiss, Booker is “the first politician to use the killings of 11 Jews to take a racist position against Palestinian rights.”   

    I know what you’re thinking, “But the state of affairs now is more bleak than ever. I mean in Trump’s America he just signs executive orders all willy-nilly even if it’s unconstitutional.”

    What about Barack Obama? Ya’ll loved him too, right?

    In 2011, when American citizen Anwar al Awlaki was killed by a drone attack in Yemen that was authorized by then-president Obama, the question of “due process” and constitutional law became obfuscated. Eric Holder, Obama’s attorney general, defended the drone attack that killed an American citizen, stating that citizens had a constitutional right to “due process” but that didn’t always mean trial by judge or jury. The precedent for executive power to kill US citizens without a trial was set by Obama and now rests the hands of our current president.

    Moreover, Barack Obama dropped hundreds of thousands of bombs onto seven different countries (including two African nations) during his eight years as commander-in-chief of the US military. Like his predecessor Bush, an accurate death toll of Obama’s overseas military action has never been tallied. As far as I can see, Democratic voters have never considered holding their party accountable for these atrocities. And now they dare to ask for our support in the name of “harm reduction.”

    When my peers repeat to me the now-popular mantra, “voting is harm-reduction,” I’m forced to ask: Harm-reduction for whom and where? If our idea of harm-reduction is endorsing endless war and mass-murder abroad for the benefit of more secure civil liberties or benefits at home, count me out. I didn’t buy into that argument when G.W. Bush invaded Afghanistan and Iraq, and I don’t buy it now. I believe it even less when I see Democratic politicians attacking the Korean peace process to gain anti-Trump brownie points. 

    In 1913 Mother Earth, a newspaper edited and operated by the anarchist-feminist Emma Goldman, published a short piece titled “Why Anarchists Don’t Vote,” written by French writer Elisee Reclus:

    Everything that can be said about the suffrage may be summed up in a sentence.

    To vote is to give up your own power.

    To elect a master or many, for a long or short time, is to resign one’s liberty.

    Call it an absolute monarch, a constitutional king, or a simple M.P., the candidate that you raise to the throne, to the seat, or to the easy chair, he will always be your master. They are persons that you put “above” the law, since they have the power of making the laws, and because it is their mission to see that they are obeyed.

    To vote is befitting of idiots.

     Over 100 years have passed since that publication and the pressure to mold our belief system to the squares of a ballot-box are stronger than ever. Shame and guilt are the primary tactics of voter mobilization by the Democratic Party today.

    Despite the contradictions of harm-reduction voting, I can see some merits. While you won’t find me trying to change the system from the inside of a voting booth, some harm-reduction voters would argue that this method is the best-case scenario in our current political climate, and some comrades say that they only cast votes for measures and not for any actual candidates.  

    However, it’s important to remember that voting is in itself classist, racist, prejudice, and manipulated by those in power. Take the current voter registration drama in my home state of Georgia, for example. Brian Kemp, Georgia secretary of state and Republican candidate for governor, helped to pass legislation last year that could delay voter registrations and purge voters from the rolls. This October, over 50,000 voter registrations for Georgia were found to be on hold in Kemp’s office, according to the Associated Press, and 70 percent of those on-hold were Black Americans. The state of Georgia has deleted or revoked thousands of voter registrations over the past year for a variety of reasons, the most popular excuse being voter inactivity in most recent elections. While the practice of voter purging has been criticized as a voter suppression tactic, it was decided by the Supreme Court in June of this year that the practice does not violate any federal statutes.  That’s four months before the boogeyman Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed to the Supreme Court. This nation isn’t experiencing a sudden increase of manipulation from political offices of voter manipulation and suppression, it’s existed long before this midterm election and will continue after the celebrations and defeats of the day.

    One other practical reason that I abstain from voting is that once I register to vote in the state of Maryland, I would become eligible for jury duty. The great opportunity to hand down a sentence to someone who was racially profiled by the vicious Baltimore Police Department (which operates in a city governed by Democrats, by the way) is currently not on my bucket-list. But secondly, and more fundamentally, I refuse to validate the power of this system. As a citizen of this wicked country, I’m obliged to many things that I would rather not be, like holding a passport that defines the borders I am owned by in order to travel, or to file my taxes, giving money from my modest wages to the US imperialist war machine. These are small simple powers that I must continuously relinquish to authority in order to comfortably exist, but one I still refuse to give them, is my direct validation of their power. I refuse you my vote. You do not have my permission. Maybe one day I’ll take on a harm-reduction voting strategy, but rest assured, I will never tell anyone if I did and I will never post online a picture of myself wearing an “I Voted” sticker, saying how proud I am to have relinquished my control today.

     

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  • COMING SOON -- "Chris Braithwaite: Mariner, Renegade, & Castaway"

    Chris Braithwaite: Mariner, Renegade and Castaway by Christian Høgsbjerg

    We are pleased to announce that we will be publishing a new edition of Christian Høgsbjerg's concise study on the life of Chris Braitwaite for distribution in North America. 

    Chris Braithwaite (aka Chris Jones) was a black Barbadian seafearer who became a leading organiser of colonial seafearers in inter-war Britain. He played a critical role in the Pan-Africanist and wider anti-colonial movement alongside figures such as C.L.R. James and George Padmore.

    First published by the Socialist Historical Society and Redwords Books in 2014, Chris Braithwaite: Mariner, Renegade and Castaway, historian Christian Høgsbjerg recovers Braithwaite’s long over-looked life as a black radical and political trade-unionist, and suggests his determined struggle for working class unity in the face of racism and austerity retains relevance for us today.

    "Høgsbjerg shines light on a generation of radical fighters against racism and exploitation, caught between the spark of light generated by the 1917 Bolshevik revolution and the crushing darkness of Stalinism."
    Hassan Mahamdallie, author of Black British Rebels

    "Christian Høgsbjerg’s 'biography from below' of West Indian seaman Chris Braithwaite opens a portal onto an dynamic Black and Red Atlantic world of work and politics.  Here is an excellent contribution to a “people’s history of the sea."
    Marcus Rediker, author of The Amistad Rebellion

    The 2017 edition of Chris Braithwaite: Mariner, Renegade and Castaway will be available this summer. PRE-ORDER your copy today!

    Comments
  • Announcing the 2016 Atlanta Radical Book Fair!

    We are very excited to announce our participation in the 2016 inaugural Atlanta Radical Book Fair! 

    The Atlanta Radical Book Fair is a gathering of radical left writers, publishers, artists, activists, and community organizations from across the American South and beyond. The inaugural 2016 fair will host panel discussions on themes of revolutionary Black history, anti-racism, queer resistance, and visual art as social action, among other topics. The Book Fair will, of course, also feature an indoor market with tables from radical publishers, artists, booksellers, and community organizations.

    Please visit the book fair's website for more information. 

    See you there!!

    Saturday, 15 October 2016
    12 - 6pm

    Little Five Points Community Center
    1083 Austin Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30307

    Comments
  • Review of HOW QUEER! in Philadelphia Gay News


    online

    Check out this review of Faith Beachemin's How Queer!  in the Philadephia Gay News summer reading list:

    "This slim volume of essays loosely focused on bisexuality is difficult to categorize — and that’s a good thing.

    "Part personal narrative, part analysis, it explores the various ways that bisexuality upsets what many contributors refer to as monosexism, the assumption that you can only be attracted to people of one gender.

    "Editor Beauchemin sets the tone in her introduction, alerting readers that the book doesn’t offer a grand, unified plan of action. Instead, she situates bisexuality into the capacious, eclectic framework of queer politics. That can’t be taken for granted because, as she correctly notes, bisexuals still struggle to make their voices heard among gays and lesbians.

    "The book includes a helpful glossary, a brief bibliography and some theoretical analysis, but it’s the 14 personal narratives that are the book’s core.

    "Two major themes emerge from those accounts. First, in a world where bisexuality is often either hypersexualized or erased, it’s an affirming, political act whenever bisexuals present and interpret their personal stories.

    "The second is the harmful consequence of denying the diversity of sexual orientation. Many contributors were raised in evangelical Christian households; their coming out was made doubly painful because they lost both their faith and their family."

    Thanks, PGN!

    Order your copy of How Queer!  at the link above.

    Comments
  • NOW AVAILABLE: Dolly Deals, "Mixed Kids' Tapes vol. 1"

    "an ongoing exercise in validating ourselves"

    We are excited to announce that we are now distributing copies of "Mixed Kids' Tapes vol. 1,"  compiled and published by Dolly Deals. This new zine is a collection of poetry, art, comics, and short prose by authors of many different racial and cultural backgrounds, reflecting on their unique experiences as people with mixed identity.

    To order your copy, click here or follow the link below to our online store. 

    MKT will also be available for purchase at the upcoming Toronto Anarchist Book Fair and the Atlanta Radical Book Fair. 

    You can keep up with Dolly's work by following him/her on instagram: @dolly.deals

    Zine Price: $5


    Order Online

    Comments
  • 10th Annual NYC Anarchist Book Fair

    Saturday, April 16, 11am-7pm

    Judson Memorial Church
    55 Washington Square South
    New York, NY 10012

    Come celebrate the 10th anniversary of the NYC Anarchist Book Fair on Sat., April 16, 2016 at the Judson Memorial Church. The book fair will bring publishers, designers, writers, artists, musicians, and activists from all over North America to this historic location in Greenwich Village—the neighborhood that is one of the birthplaces of the anarchist movement in the US. 

    The NYC Anarchist Book Fair is free to the public. It provides a safe space for activists to meet and organize and where the anarcho-curious can get informed about a movement against capitalism and the state that is central to many of the most important political and cultural currents of our time. Besides exhibits by anarchist publishers, artisans, and organizers, the book fair will feature panels and workshops on a wide range of topics, from anarchist history, theory, and politics to economics, culture, social movements, and art.

    The NYC Anarchist Arts Festival and the NYC Anarchist Film Festival, will be held in conjunction with the book fair. For the first time this year we'll also have a anarchist music night. 

    More information: www.anarchistbookfair.net

    Comments
  • Now Available: HOW QUEER!, by Faith Beauchemin

    How Queer! is a rightfully unapologetic refusal to assimilate to heterosexist and homophobic societal standards. While the essays are as unique as our identities can be, there is a consistent feeling of hope throughout the stories as each author demonstrates the courage it requires to live and love as our authentic selves. Ultimately, this book is a necessary call to dismantle the systemic forms of oppression, namely capitalism and patriarchy, which are a result of colonization and are responsible for the denial and erasure of gender and sexual fluidity in modern American society. Are you ready to get started?" 

    — Amanda Atwell, Georgia State University.


    online

    How Queer! gathers together fourteen autobiographical essays written not by sociologists or professional activists, but by ordinary bisexual, pansexual, and sexually-fluid people. These writers come from diverse backgrounds, but their personal narratives explore overarching themes of non-monosexual visibility, activism, confrontation with homophobia and religious bias, and endlessly double-edged experiences in the LGBTQ community.

    These stories help bring understanding to anyone who wants to learn more about gender and sexual identity—whether to help define their own journey, to grow their own awareness, or to build solidarity with one another.

    As a complement to these narratives, Faith Beauchemin offers her own personal commentary in a series of reflective essays, which place the writers’ experiences in the context of broader movements for radical social change. Beauchemin argues that a trend toward bisexual erasure in LGBTQ activism is all too prevalent, and functions only to serve the interest of patriarchy, sexism, and homophobia.

    In contrast to this trend of erasure, the stories collected in How Queer! subvert oppressive hierarchies by highlighting the perspectives and revolutionary potential of people who refuse to fit neatly into the narrow categories of sexual identity that are imposed upon them at every turn.

    Faith Beauchemin is a writer, activist, blogger, and independent feminist scholar from Detroit, Michigan, currently living in Anniston, Alabama.

    Help support this and other publishing projects by ordering your copy of How Queer! today at the link above.

    Comments
  • Pre-Order HOW QUEER! (Coming January 2016)

    online

    We are excited to announce the upcoming publication of How Queer!, the highly-anticipated debut title from Faith Beauchemin. A short synopsis of the book is below. You can pre-order the book by clicking the image above. Pre-orders help us to sustain and continue projects like these. Reserving your copy of How Queer! today will go a long way toward helping us keep this book (and all of our other titles) in print. Thank you!

    How Queer! gathers together fourteen autobiographical essays written not by sociologists or professional activists, but by ordinary bisexual, pansexual, and sexually-fluid people. These writers come from diverse backgrounds, but their personal narratives explore overarching themes of non-monosexual visibility, activism, confrontation with homophobia and religious bias, and endlessly double-edged experiences in the LGBTQ community.

    These stories help bring understanding to anyone who wants to learn more about gender and sexual identity—whether to help define their own journey, grow their own awareness, or to build solidarity with one another.

    As a complement to these narratives, Faith Beauchemin offers her own personal commentary in a series of reflective essays, which place the writers’ experiences in the context of broader movements for radical social change. Beauchemin argues that a trend toward bisexual erasure in LGBTQ activism is all too prevalent, and functions only to serve the interest of patriarchy, sexism, and homophobia.

    In contrast to this trend of erasure, the stories collected in How Queer! subvert oppressive hierarchies by highlighting perspectives and revolutionary potential of people who refuse to fit neatly into the narrow categories of sexual identity that are imposed upon them at every turn.

    Faith Beauchemin is a writer, activist, blogger, and independent feminist scholar from Detroit, Michigan, currently living in Anniston, Alabama. 

    Comments
  • Book Talk - "Jean Vigo and the Anarchist Eye"

    Saturday, 4/18/15 (3:30-5:30 p.m.)
    "Jean Vigo and the Anarchist Eye: A film screening and discussion with David Weir"
    2015 NYC Anarchist Book Fair
    Judson Memorial Church Assembly Hall
    239 Thompson Street, New York City, NY 10012

    This Saturday, David Weir (author of Jean Vigo and the Anarchist Eye) and the NYC Anarchist Book Fair present a screening of Jean Vigo's classic film Zéro de conduite.

    The revolutionary ideology of Jean Vigo, the son of the celebrated anarchist Miguel Almereyda, brought about a revolution in cinema, as his 1933 film about a rebellion in a boys school shows. Zéro de conduite (Zero for conduct) conveys a sense of freedom that is not only political, but also artistic, making Vigo himself the first auteur of anarchism.

    Copies of Jean Vigo and the Anarchist Eye will be available for sale at the Book Fair. For more information about the book, click here.

    David Weir is Professor of Comparative Literature at the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. He is the author of Decadence and the Making of Modernism (University of Massachusetts Press, 1995), James Joyce and the Art of Mediation (University of Michigan Press, 1996), Anarchy and Culture: The Aesthetic Politics of Modernism (University of Massachusetts Press, 1997), Brahma in the West: William Blake and the Oriental Renaissance (State University of New York Press, 2003), Decadent Culture in the United States: Art and Literature against the American Grain, 1890-1926, and American Orient: Imagining the East from the Colonial Era through the Twentieth Century (University of Massachusetts Press, 2011). He is also the author of Jean Vigo and the Anarchist Eye (On Our Own Authority!, 2015), a study of the influential French filmmaker, Jean Vigo.

    online

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  • The Commune: Paris, 1871

    online

    Today is the 144th anniversary of the Paris Commune! If you want to learn more about this fascinating moment in history, consider reading The Commune: 1871, a collection of classic anarchist writings about the Commune. The book summary is below: 

    On 18 March 1871, enormous sections of the Parisian working class began a rebellion that shook the foundations of European society. Through this uprising, laborers seized direct control over their city, expelling their government and capitalist rulers. These revolutionary men and women declared Paris an independent municipality — a commune where they would directly and collectively manage their society through new institutions and voluntary associations of their own creation.

    The Commune: Paris, 1871 is a collection of classic anarchist and libertarian-socialist studies of the Paris Commune, compiled, edited, and introduced by Andrew Zonneveld. This concise volume includes critical reflections on the Commune from such radical authors as Louise Michel, William Morris, Mikhail Bakunin, Petr Kropotkin, Voltairine de Cleyre, Alexander Berkman and Maurice Brinton.

    Follow the link above or click here to order your copy of The Commune: Paris, 1871.

    The editor of this book was recently interviewed by The Final Straw Radio. Below is a recording of that interview, featuring a lenghty conversation about anarchism, the Paris Commune, and its relevence to global social movement history. Enjoy!


     

    Comments
  • JEAN VIGO AND THE ANARCHIST EYE by David Weir [Now Available!]

    "Decades ahead of his time, the film artist Jean Vigo was a one-man nouvelle vague. He was also a visionary who grasped cinema’s potential for embodying his political ideas—as demonstrated by David Weir in his acute and detailed appreciation of Vigo’s multi-faceted oeuvre, the best such to appear in English."

    — J. Hoberman, author of Film After Film.


    on Square Market

    The son of Miguel Almereyda, an anarchist activist who died in prison, Jean Vigo kept faith with the politics of his father through his art. One of the most influential filmmakers in cinema history, Vigo gave aesthetic expression to anarchist ideology in four films: the city symphony À propos de Nice (1930), the sports documentary Taris ou la natation (1931), the medium-length Zéro de conduite (1933), and the feature-length L’Atalante (1934), currently ranked by the British Film Institute as the twelfth greatest film of all time. Although his career was cut short by tuberculosis at the age of 29, Jean Vigo continues to be one of the most commanding figures in the history of cinema.

    In this book, David Weir examines Vigo’s cinematic career in both the political and the cultural context of the interwar period in European history, taking stock of the ideological upheavals of the 1930s that plunged the continent into the horrors of fascism and war. Weir also explores Vigo’s relationship to other filmmakers of the period, such as Luis Buñuel, Jean Renoir, and Marcel Carné—all of whom, like Vigo, range across the leftist spectrum of the interwar years. In the end, Weir argues that, whereas L’Atalante and the other films have been mostly restored to something like their original condition, more work needs to be done to restore the original ideological meaning of those films.

    Jean Vigo and the Anarchist Eye is NOW AVAILABLE from our online bookstore! Order your copy today at the link above!

    DAVID WEIR is professor of comparative literature at the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. He is the author of Decadence and the Making of Modernism (1995), James Joyce and the Art of Mediation (1996), Anarchy and Culture: The Aesthetic Politics of Modernism (1997), Brahma in the West: William Blake and the Oriental Renaissance (2003), Decadent Culture in the United States: Art and Literature against the American Grain, 1890–1926 (2007), and American Orient: Imagining the East from the Colonial Era through the Twentieth Century (2011).

    Comments
  • 5th Annual Carrboro Anarchist Book Fair (Nov. 22, 2014)

    On Our Own Authority! will be tabling at the 2014 Carrboro Anarchist Book Fair. We are very excited to be participating again this year. Events will be held on Saturday, 22 November 2014, at The Nightlight Bar and Internationalist Books in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Check out the postcard below for more information, or visit http://carrboroanarchistbookfair.wordpress.com/ 

    See you there!

    Comments
  • TO REMAIN SILENT IS IMPOSSIBLE: Emma Goldman & Alexander Berkman In Russia

    on Square Market

    Emma Goldman and Alexander Berkman, the Russian Jewish immigrants who were once called “the two most notorious anarchists in the United States” by the New York Times, were the most outstanding revolutionary activists of their generation. Arrested in 1917 for their anti-conscription campaign during the First World War, they were subsequently deported to Russia in the 1919-1920 Red Scare.

    Although they were initially optimistic about returning to Russia in the midst of social revolution, over the next two years Goldman and Berkman would come face-to-face with the contradictions of “the dictatorship of the proletariat” as they witnessed the persecution of Russian anarchists, the suppression of revolutionary labor movements, and the brutal annihilation of the 1921 Kronstadt Uprising.

    The two anarchists learned from experience that the Bolshevik dictatorship was not the embodiment of the workers’ revolution that it claimed to be, but was in fact “the very antithesis of revolution.” Their first-hand accounts of the situation in Russia reminded revolutionaries everywhere that “the state - whatever its name or form - is ever the mortal enemy of liberty and popular self-determination” and that true social revolution can never be managed or manipulated by political parties seeking state power, but must emerge from the creative self-activity of working people themselves.

    This new volume collects selected writings by Emma Goldman and Alexander Berkman that recount their experiences in Russia from 1920 to 1922. Famous essays like “Bolsheviks Shooting Anarchists,” “The Prisons of Russia,” and “There Is No Communism in Russia” are collected here alongside immortal pamphlets like The Crushing of the Russian RevolutionThe Russian Tragedy, and The Kronstadt Rebellion. Selections from Emma Goldman’s memoir, My Disillusionment in Russia, are also included, as well as many other documents and manuscripts.

    Order your copy at the link above!

    Comments
  • 2014 Philadelphia Anarchist Book Fair

    Saturday, August 23rd. 11am - 7pm.

    4014 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA.

    This weekend, On Our Own Authority! will be tabling at Philadelphia Anarchist Book Fair. The book fair will feature tables from over two dozen radical publishers, booksellers, artists and community organizations, and a wide variety of workshops and presentations by authors and activists.

    For more information, please visit the Philadelphia Anarchist Book Fair's website.

    See you in Philly!

    Comments
  • ORGANIZATION & SPONTANEITY by Kimathi Mohammed

    “Kimathi Mohammed’s essays represent a creative and brilliant attempt to forge an organizational path for black radical politics, away from the well known limitations of elite vanguardism. His engagements with the work of C.L.R. James, the Black Panther Party and the League of Revolutionary Workers make his contribution a neglected and important part of the history of black radicalism, and of considerable relevance today.” 
    — Aaron Kamugisha, Lecturer in Cultural Studies, University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus

    on Square Market

    “It is somewhat disgusting to hear self-styled Black leaders talk about leading the ‘unorganized’ masses,” writes Kimathi Mohammed. “It was the ‘unorganized’ masses who congregated in the streets, defied curfews, engaged in direct confrontation with the police and military…and unleashed a burning assault upon the property of their oppressors. If the Black masses were unorganized, it definitely didn’t appear that they were.…All the major rebellions erupted spontaneously and violently—Harlem in 1964, Watts in 1965, Newark and Cleveland in 1967.…No one had to tell them what to do; they mobilized and organized themselves and did what had to be done."

    Kimathi Mohammed’s Organization & Spontaneity was originally published in 1974 as a response to key contradictions of the Black freedom movement in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Mohammed was among the most original political theorists of the Black Power era. His work emphasized the self-organization of ordinary African Americans and their liberating, self-directed activism.

    The updated 2012 edition includes a new introductory essay by Modibo Kadalie, an afterword by Matthew Quest, and Kimathi Mohammed’s previously unpublished essay, “Beyond Measure,” which explores the influence of C.L.R. James on the League of Revolutionary Black Workers.

    Comments
  • JEAN VIGO AND THE ANARCHIST EYE by David Weir

    "Decades ahead of his time, the film artist Jean Vigo was a one-man nouvelle vague. He was also a visionary who grasped cinema’s potential for embodying his political ideas—as demonstrated by David Weir in his acute and detailed appreciation of Vigo’s multi-faceted oeuvre, the best such to appear in English."

    — J. Hoberman, author of Film After Film.

    on Square Market

    The son of Miguel Almereyda, an anarchist activist who died in prison, Jean Vigo kept faith with the politics of his father through his art. One of the most influential filmmakers in cinema history, Vigo gave aesthetic expression to anarchist ideology in four films: the city symphony À propos de Nice (1930), the sports documentary Taris ou la natation (1931), the medium-length Zéro de conduite (1933), and the feature-length L’Atalante (1934), currently ranked by the British Film Institute as the twelfth greatest film of all time. Although his career was cut short by tuberculosis at the age of 29, Jean Vigo continues to be one of the most commanding figures in the history of cinema.

    In this book, David Weir examines Vigo’s cinematic career in both the political and the cultural context of the interwar period in European history, taking stock of the ideological upheavals of the 1930s that plunged the continent into the horrors of fascism and war. Weir also explores Vigo’s relationship to other filmmakers of the period, such as Luis Buñuel, Jean Renoir, and Marcel Carné—all of whom, like Vigo, range across the leftist spectrum of the interwar years. In the end, Weir argues that, whereas L’Atalante and the other films have been mostly restored to something like their original condition, more work needs to be done to restore the original ideological meaning of those films.

    Jean Vigo and the Anarchist Eye is NOW AVAILABLE from our online bookstore! Order your copy today at the link above!

    DAVID WEIR is professor of comparative literature at the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. He is the author of Decadence and the Making of Modernism (1995), James Joyce and the Art of Mediation (1996), Anarchy and Culture: The Aesthetic Politics of Modernism (1997), Brahma in the West: William Blake and the Oriental Renaissance (2003), Decadent Culture in the United States: Art and Literature against the American Grain, 1890–1926 (2007), and American Orient: Imagining the East from the Colonial Era through the Twentieth Century (2011).

    Comments
  • Coming Fall 2014: Eusi Kwayana, THE BAUXITE STRIKE AND THE OLD POLITICS [Revised 2nd Edition]

    Kwayana, THE BAUXITE STRIKE AND THE OLD POLITICS on Square Market

    “Every man is his own leader and we are leaderless” — this was the organizational principle voiced by the Afro-Guyanese bauxite mine workers in the democratic councils and mass assemblies that characterized the bauxite strike of April 1970.

    Originally published in 1972, Eusi Kwayana’s The Bauxite Strike and the Old Politics examines the struggle for workers’ control in what was Guyana’s soon-to-be-nationalized bauxite industry. Kwayana’s account of these events underscores the workers’ conviction that “nationalization without workers’ control and workers’ self-management is a fraud.”

    This revised second edition includes an introduction by Matthew Quest and an appendix of rare documents published by ASCRIA (African Society for Cultural Relations with Independent Africa). Over thirty leaflets, pamphlets, essays, editorials, and newspaper articles have been reprinted in this volume, documenting the struggle for workers’ self-emancipation in Guyana from the bauxite strike of 1970 to the sugar workers’ rebellion of 1974.

    PRE-ORDER your copy today at the link above!

    Praise for Eusi Kwayana...

    “Eusi Kwayana’s, The Bauxite Strike and the Old Politics is a classic document of the Caribbean. … Very nicely re-introduced by Matthew Quest, the work makes clear the strong claims these movements made regarding the self-organizing capabilities of workers. Further, it sheds great light on the roots of the post-colonial crisis of governance in the region, which has only gotten worse since the time during which Kwayana wrote this penetrating text. A must read for all who are thinking about the rebuilding of a global Left movement.”
    — Paget Henry, Sociology and Africana Studies, Brown University.

    “The republication of Eusi Kwayana’s Bauxite Strike and the Old Politics … could not be more welcome forty years after its first introduction and impact. In a state of affairs in Guyana today where the ‘old politics’ is very much alive, Kwayana’s [work] … is as relevant as ever.”
    — Nigel Westmaas, Africana Studies Department, Hamilton College.

    “The new edition of Eusi Kwayana’s The Bauxite Strike and the Old Politics … is a well-written account of struggles against injustice, oppression, and corruption in Guyana’s post-independence era.”
    — Jerome Teelucksingh, University of the West Indies, Trinidad & Tobago.

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  • Praise for BLACK LIBERATION AND PALESTINE SOLIDARITY

    Black Liberation and Palestine Solidarity is a collection of selected essays by Lenni Brenner and Matthew Quest that discusses the historical response of African American freedom movements to the colonial settler state of Israel and its role in American imperialism in the Middle East. Through nuanced discussions of racism, capitalism, imperialism, and state power, their work helps to clarify one of the most controversial legacies of the Black Power movement.

    Check out what scholars and activists are saying about Black Liberation and Palestine Solidarity...

     Brenner & Quest, BLACK LIBERATION AND PALESTINE SOLIDARITY on Square Market

    “An informative, incisive, and essential historical analysis of the African American freedom movement’s solidarity with Palestine.”
    Michael Letwin, co-founder of Labor for Palestine and Jews for Palestinian Right of Return.

    “Black Liberation and Palestine Solidarity is required reading for all our cadre and supporters. We encourage progressive and revolutionary forces in every corner of the world who genuinely seek truth, justice, and peace to buy and study this book.”
    Bob Brown, All-African People’s Revolutionary Party.

    “At every stage, the authors…unearth hitherto unknown information…which affirm[s]…that the moment revolutionary and progressive leadership [of] the ‘Black radical tradition’ embraces the capitalist state in any form…the struggle on behalf of Humanity is compromised.…This is a must read.”
    Bukka Rennie, author of The History of the Working-Class in Trinidad & Tobago in the 20th Century.

    “An important if not essential addition to the history of the African American liberation movement as seen through a penetrating and comprehending political lens.”
    Michael Rectenwald, New York University.

    Lenni Brenner is the author of Zionism in the Age of the Dictators, The Iron Wall: Zionist Revisionism from Jabotinsky to Shamir, The Lesser Evil, a history of the Democratic Party, and editor of 51 Documents: Zionist Collaboration with the Nazis.

    Matthew Quest was co-editor of the Palestine Solidarity Review from 2002 to 2005 and has taught American History, World History, Caribbean History and Africana Studies most recently at Georgia State University.

    Follow the link above to order your copy of Black Liberation and Palestine Solidarity.

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