“The Belarus Revolution started in 2020 after a rigged presidential election. It ended, at least to outward appearances, with President Lukashenka’s brutal repression and stricter outlawing of future protests. But, for many, the struggle continues: a new study on protestors’ recollections refutes the perception that the revolution failed.”
‘The revolutionary epic is never a “finished” narrative, let alone uniquely nefarious. The unruly and dense “archives” that revolutions (or an epic past) embody are liable to tell different stories, stories that bequeath different “lessons” and, thereby, possibilities.’
“After ten years as the Arab region’s only functioning democracy, Tunisia is now imperiled by a presidential strongman who in 2021 dissolved parliament and attacked the judiciary, and in 2022 rewrote the constitution to reflect his plebiscitary conception of direct democracy. Egypt is governed by a personalized military dictatorship that incarcerates or eliminates all forms of opposition, even its erstwhile business cronies. Yemen, the Arabian peninsula’s sole republic, is ravaged by an air war between a Saudi-UAE alliance and Houthi rebels, rendering 80% of Yemenis in need of humanitarian aid. In Syria, the nationwide uprising did not end the 50-year rule of the al-Assad dynasty. With military support from Russia and Iran, Bashar al-Assad has subjected Syrians to staggering state violence; over half a million have perished and 13 million forced to flee their homes.”
After the 1819 Peterloo Massacre, the young radical poet Percy Bysshe Shelley proclaimed he was deserting “the odorous gardens of literature” for “the great sandy desert of politics.” Instead, he infused literature with revolutionary political ideas.
Review of The Complete Works of Rosa Luxemburg, Volume IV: Political Writings 2, “On Revolution” (1906–1909), edited by Peter Hudis and Sandra Rein (Verso, 2022)
“Gilmore’s narrative follows a path of struggle through Southern, American, and world histories that links together the Russian Revolution, the rise and fall of fascism, and the “long civil rights movement” in the United States”.
“Why has the story of Spartacus become important to leftists over the years? Because Spartacus showed what it would take for people to liberate themselves from violent systems of oppression.”
“Tensions across the religious-secular fault lines in the country could not be reconciled, and freely elected leaders failed to deliver on the 2011 uprising’s cry for bread, freedom and dignity.”
“The new social and political movements have considerable potential, but they are the offspring of a historical turning point that has evacuated the utopian horizon of the past, identified precisely with the idea of revolution.”
“The story of how decolonization struggles across the Black Atlantic tried to not only cast off European rule but also to remake the entire world system. An October 2019 conversation.”