News

  • 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
  • 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! 

    online

    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
  • The Letters Festival 2014 (ATL, GA)

    On Our Own Authority! will be tabling at the Letters Festival Book Market on November 7th and 8th. 

    The Letters Festival is a "three-day independent literature festival with writing workshops, conversations, discussion panel, a book market and live readings featuring some of the country’s most riveting independent authors." (http://thelettersfestival.org)

    The Book Market is open 5pm-8pm on Friday Nov 7th, and 12pm-8pm on Saturday Nov 8th at The Goat Farm Arts Center: 1192 Foster St NW, Atlanta GA 30318.

    Come by our table and introduce yourself! 

    Hope to 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
  • Now Available: Eusi Kwayana's THE BAUXITE STRIKE AND THE OLD POLITICS [Revised 2nd Edition]

    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, a biographical sketch of Eusi Kwayana, 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.

    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.

    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