Currently showing posts tagged black history


    NOW AVAILABLE from our online store!

    In the middle of the twentieth century, the civil rights, Black power, and Pan-Africanist movements forever altered the shape of human social existence as millions of people organized in a world-wide struggle for freedom that continues into the present day. In this approachable new volume, Modibo Kadalie reflects upon his nearly six decades of participation in social freedom movements, from Atlanta’s lunch counter sit-ins, to labor organizing in Detroit, to student protests for Black studies, to anticolonial support networks for African liberation and beyond. Through conversations and public speeches, Kadalie offers a new way to understand history by recasting these movements as remarkably leaderless revolutions and connecting Black freedom struggles to ecological activism in the era of climate change. Kadalie calls upon present and future generations of activists to reconnect with the spirit of past revolutions and our own intuitive capacities for cooperation and directly democratic self-governance.

    For more information about the book, check out this review from Truthout.

    More reviews for Pan-African Social Ecology:

    “Modibo Kadalie is a storyteller—in the most honorable and powerful sense of the word—who opens up the possibilities of fundamental social transformation. ... reminding us that power and truth always reside in the people, not their ‘leaders.’”
    —Natsu Saito, author of Settler Colonialism, Race, and the Law

    “Modibo Kadalie elaborates a vision of Pan-African social ecology rooted in the Black anarchist tradition, people’s power, ecofeminism, and lessons from global struggles. … Following C.L.R. James’s dictum that ‘any cook can govern,’ Kadalie lifts up—and acts in concert with—ordinary people who have fought to preserve their autonomy and re-make the world.”
    ­­— Jackie Wang, author of Carceral Capitalism

    “This collection offers a gift of understanding and clarity in a way we shouldn’t take for granted and at a time when almost nothing feels certain.”
    —William C. Anderson, co-author of As Black As Resistance

    “Empowering and helpful to scholars and activists alike.”
    —Eusi Kwayana, author of The Bauxite Strike and the Old Politics

    Modibo Kadalie is a social ecologist, academic, and lifelong radical organizer. In the 1970s, he was a member of the League of Revolutionary Black Workers and the African Liberation Support Committee and a delegate to the Sixth Pan-African Congress. He is also the author of Internationalism, Pan-Africanism, and the Struggle of Social Classes.

  • NEW BOOKS, Coming Fall 2019

    We are excited to announce two new titles coming in the fall of 2019!

    In October, we will be publishing Pan-African Social Ecology: Speeches, Conversations and Essays by Modibo Kadalie. This is Kadalie's first new book in almost twenty years. In this collection of interviews and public talks, he reflects on his participation in the sit-ins, boycotts, strikes, urban rebellions, and anticolonialist movements that have animated the late-twentieth and early-twenty-first centuries. Kadalie demonstrates how forms of directly democratic organizing that have evolved through these freedom struggles also present the promise of a ecological future. In so doing, he explains that direct democracy is the key to both Black liberation and ecological security.

    This concise, radical, and iconoclastic book calls on present and future generations of activists to reconnect with the spirit of these movements without lionizing individual leaders or lending legitimacy to any government or politician. 

    In November we are publishing Lay Down Your Arms: Anti-Militarism, Anti-Imperialism, and the Global Radical Left in the 1930s. Edited by Ole Birk Laursen, Lay Down Your Arms is a collection of essays from a diverse group of writers originally published in the Dutch anti-militarist journal, De Wapens Neder (1935). Through their writing, these anarchist and socialist writers from Europe, Algeria, India, Japan, and the United States connected the struggles against fascism and imperialism in East Asia and Europe with anti-colonial struggles in India and Africa and the African American civil rights movement in the United States. This collection demonstrates the international scope and reach of anarchist and socialist anti-militarism in the 1930s. 

    Both of these books are available for pre-order from our Online Store

  • The Autonomous Research Institute for Direct-Democracy and Social Ecology

    We are excited to announce that in 2019, On Our Own Authority! will begin our collaboration with the Autonomous Research Institute for Direct Democracy and Social Ecology (ARIDDSE), located in Midway, Georgia. As part of this initiative, we will co-publish several books, including new works from Modibo Kadalie, Janis Coombs Reid, and Olga Cielemecka. More informa about ARIDDSE can be found online at Below is an excerpt from their website:

    The Autonomous Research Institute for Direct Democracy and Social Ecology is an organization of independent activists and scholars dedicated to the documentation and study of ordinary people’s social revolutions throughout history.  As the name of our institute implies, we also investigate the relationship of these social movements to the natural world. We hope our work will illustrate that the well-being of our ecology is intimately connected to the abolition of all hierarchy and oppression in human society and that all ecological crises are also social crises. 

    Based in Midway, Georgia the scope of our work is simultaneously local and global.  Our scholars and activists have studied (and in many cases, participated in) direct-democratic liberation movements around the globe and across the reach of history: from the Ogeechee Insurrections to Pan-Africanism; from the Civil Rights/Black Power movement to the Occupy movement, and beyond.

    Through our research, writing, and activism, we hope to critically chronicle social movements from the past and become an intricate part of these diverse movements and moments in the present, placing them into conversation with one another as we uncover their common thread of ordinary people’s self-organization and social liberation.

    Throughout history, ordinary working-class people have consistently resisted the imposition of hierarchy and coercive authority through revolutionary movements of their own creation and direction. They have organized and re-organized themselves over time into new and ever more democratic social institutions that arise from the bottom ranks of society. In doing so, this human collective has also asserted their interdependence with the rest of the natural world. This historical process of creating self-organized and directly democratic institutions gives us the hope of a viable collective social and ecological future.

  • 25% OFF: Ida B Wells's "Lynch Law In Georgia and Other Writings"

    Ida B. Wells was a teacher, journalist, and newspaper editor who led the most dynamic anti-lynching campaign in American History. Wells’s work exposes how the public murder and mutilation of Black bodies by mob justice stood side by side with a degrading culture based on racial stereotypes and strict gender roles that institutionalized fear in everyday life. In doing so, Wells challenged the intersection of white supremacy, patriarchy, and the meaning of “civilization” in the early 20th century.

    For a limited time, you can purchase this crucial collection of Wells's lesser-known writings for 25% off of the retail price. Shipping is FREE.

    List Price: $20.00
    SALE PRICE: $14.99

    Click here to order your copy!

  • 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!

  • 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

  • EVENT: "Black Rebellion in Georgia" with Modibo Kadalie, Saralee Stafford, Neal Shirley

    Sunday, June 14th 3:00PM

    Hammonds House Museum
    503 Peeples Street SW
    Atlanta, GA 30310

    Black Rebellion in Georgia: From the Ogeechee Insurrection to Black Power and Beyond

    Hammonds House Museum, in collaboration with the Auburn Avenue Research Library will host "Black Rebellion in Georgia: From the Ogeechee Insurrection to Black Power and Beyond." 

    This community discussion will feature a panel of scholars/activists who will explore historical acts of insurrection by Black communities in the American South, including the post-Civil War Ogeechee insurrection outside of Savannah, the 1966 Atlanta Summerhill neighborhood riots, and the 1977 Atlanta garbage workers' strike. This discussion will also examine the historical relevance of these struggles to recent uprisings related to police brutality and the political and economic disenfranchisement black communities. 

    Panelists include Saralee Stafford and Neal Shirley, authors of the recently published Dixie Be Damned: 300 Years of Insurrection in the American South, and Modibo Kadalie, author of Internationalism, Pan-Africanism, and the Struggle of Social Classes.

    For more information, please visit the facebook event page.

  • Eusi Kwayana's 90th Birthday

    Today is the 90th birthday of Eusi Kwayana, a revolutionary Pan-Africanist and independent socialist activist, teacher, and writer from Guyana. During the struggle for Guyanese independence, Kwayana was imprisoned by the British army in 1954. In 1956, he founded County High School (later renamed Republic Cooperative High School) in Buxton, Guyana. In 1964, he co-founded the African Society for Cultural Relations with Independent Africa (ASCRIA), an Afro-Guyanese socialist and anti-colonialist organization. In 1974, ASCRIA joined the Working People's Alliance, which is famously affiliated with another Guyanese revolutionary, Walter Rodney, who was assassinated in 1980.

    Throughout his lifetime of social activism, Eusi Kwayana has advocated politics of direct democracy and working-class self-management. In his writings, he emphasizes that revolutionary change comes from among the ranks or ordinary people, through their own self-organization. His book The Bauxite Strike and the Old Politics (1972) documents an early 1970s bauxite miners' strike in Guyana during which striking workers organized themselves under the slogan "Every man is his own leader and we are leaderless" and directed their strike efforts through mass assemblies and direct-democratic councils.

    Kwayana is also the author of several other books, including Next Witness, Scars of Bondage, Guyana: No Guilty Race, Walter Rodney: His Last Days and Campaigns, and Buxton Friendship in Print and Memory.

    The Bauxite Strike and the Old Politics was republished by On Our Own Authority! in 2012. That same year, Eusi Kwayana visited Atlanta to launch the book and deliver a talk at the Auburn Avenue Research Library for African American History and Culture (the top photo was taken during the event). The newest edition of the book is available for sale at the link below and includes an appendix of rare documents published by ASCRIA in the early 1970s.

    It is impossible to summarize the life and significance of such a celebrated figure as Baba Eusi Kwayana within the confines of one blog post. We are honored to have worked with Eusi over the past three years and look forward to continuing that work into the future.

    We are all sending you our warmest congratulations on your 90th year, Baba Eusi! As you are known for saying, Walk Good!


  • For Women's History Month: 50% off LYNCH LAW IN GEORGIA & OTHER WRITINGS by Ida B. Wells!

    Ida B. Wells was a teacher, journalist, and newspaper editor who led the most dynamic anti-lynching campaign in American History. Wells’s work exposes how the public murder and mutilation of Black bodies by mob justice stood side by side with a degrading culture based on racial stereotypes and strict gender roles that institutionalized fear in everyday life. In doing so, Wells challenged the intersection of white supremacy, patriarchy, and the meaning of “civilization” in the early 20th century.

    In honor of International Women's Day and Women's History Month, Ida B. Wells's Lynch Law in Georgia & Other Writings is available at a very low discounted price of $9.99 (that's 50% off!). 

    Follow the link below or click here to order your copy! 


  • 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.