Category Archives: autonomy

Marcello Tarì’s “There Is No Unhappy Revolution” reviewed by Chrys Papaioannou

“Written from the standpoint of an intellectual who remains committed to the political project of insurrectionary communism, Tarì’s monograph-cum-manifesto will no doubt rouse readers who take textual pleasure in the insurgent lyricism of militant collectives such as The Invisible Committee, Tiqqun and Colectivo Situaciones.”

Catherine Malabou: Two video interviews on anarchism and philosophy

“We revisit the arguments for ontological anarchism and attempt to elucidate a bridge between anarchy in philosophy and politics. Catherine also shares her views on cryptocurrency, AI, and other technological trends as they relate to the prospect of a “dawning anarchy”. Moreover, we explore the distinction between liberatory and libertarian anarchisms as they both emerge on the cybernetic plane of the control society.”

Hall Greenland: “After Independence, Algeria Launched an Experiment in Self-Managing Socialism”

Local democracy wasn’t always perfect: there were many examples of local bigwigs, mafia, and armed mujahideen doing side deals with emigrating European owners or seizing European property. However, in the latter cases, there were often ongoing struggles between the usurpers and local workers for control.  The spontaneous reality of the summer of 1962 set the stage for the struggle that was to dominate the next three years: direct democracy versus bureaucratic and bourgeois control. To put it another way: the people against a nascent ruling class.”

introduction to “Smash The System! Punk Anarchism as a Culture of Resistance” (2022)

“Our subculture will be Dionysian—sensual, spontaneous, wild—an uncontrollable geyser of raw feeling. The Apollonian (the rational, the intentional, the orderly) will follow the chaotic energy that drives this movement, not precede it. Intellectual proposals can build on adrenaline, lust, violence, and pleasure, but they can’t substitute for them.  So nothing sanctimonious, nothing triumphalist or moralistic. Better a gritty romanticism that sees dignity in defeat as well as victory.”

The tragedy of post-colonial self-determination

In her challenging book Worldmaking after Empire: The Rise and Fall of Self-Determination (2019)political scientist Adom Getachew discusses self-determination in the Anglophone Black Atlantic, with special emphasis on post-colonial independence as well as Caribbean and African federations.  It would be interesting to compare the political thought of intellectuals and statesmen such as George Padmore, Kwame Nkrumah, Eric Williams, Michael Manley, and Julius Nyerere, which she explores, with that of contemporary writers.  In particular, it would be fascinating to study the failure of self-determination that started in the 1960s in light of contemporary tragedies of autonomy that focused paradigmatically on Haiti, such as Monsieur Toussaint (1961) by Edouard Glissant, Toussaint (1961) by Lorraine Hansberry, Drums and Colors (1961) by Derek Walcott, The Tragedy of King Christophe (1963) by Aimé Césaire, and C. L. R. James’ revisions to The Black Jacobins (1962) that recast it as a post-colonial tragedy.

8 June 2022

Rodrigo Karmy Bolton: “The Anarchy of Beginnings: Notes on the Rhythmicity of Revolt”

“When we say that revolt assumes a destituent character, we mean that its wager no longer lies in the fulfillment of determinate end (the establishment of a new regime), but in its capacity to delegitimize a determinate regime while itself inhabiting a space of pure means.”

Onur Isci: Book Review: “Nationalism, Secessionism, and Autonomy” by André Lecours (2021)

“Throughout the book, the author seeks to answer the question of why some nationalist movements take a secessionist form while others do not. The answer he gives lies not in the character or content of the nationalist movement in question, but in the autonomy of the region in which the movement emerged within a sovereign state.”

Miquel Vila: “Why Catalonia Failed”

Spanish authorities have recognized the continuing threat to state sovereignty. They have closely monitored the pro-independence movement and Catalan politicians since 2017. The events following the referendum left a scar on the activists and sympathizers of independence. Sympathy for civil disobedience like that seen in 2019 continues to rise. While Madrid has disciplined Catalonia’s politicians, the new generation of movement leaders is growing up with more radical, confrontational tactics and less faith in the electoral process.

Chiara Bottici: “Anarchafeminism”

“But if freedom is both the means and the end, then one could also envisage a world free from the very notion of gender as well as the oppressive structures that it generated. Because gendered bodies are still the worldwide objects of exploitation and domination, we need an anarchafeminist manifesto here and now. But the latter should be conceived as a ladder that we may well abandon once we have reached the top. Indeed, it is implicit, in the very process of embarking in such an anarchafeminist project, that we should strive toward a world beyond the division between men and women and thus also, in a way, beyond feminism itself.”

Amador Fernández-Savater: “15M in the Spanish labyrinth”

15M invents a place from which to feel, think and act with autonomy, a space that does not sell promises or solutions, that does not ask for adherence, but rather invites anyone to elaborate questions about and take actions with regard to life in common.”