Category Archives: the common

Warren Breckman: “Can the Crowd Speak?”

Occupy Wall Street shows that the constituent moment of democracy should include more than merely bodies gathered in public space; that the collective voice is not discovered but invented; that the spectacle of mass gathering and bodies in motion should give way to talking and listening; and that, if the crowd is to speak in a democratic voice, then that voice must be both singular and plural.”

Mohamed Abdou: “Let Empire collapse: why we need a decolonial revolution”

“Hopes Fade for New Political Course in Algeria a Year After Popular Uprising”

“The revolt in the streets that began last year, known here as Hirak, initially appeared to signal a new dawn in a country that had been stifled for decades by its huge military. But when the movement’s failure to coalesce around leaders and agree on goals created a vacuum, the remnants of the repressive Algerian state, with its ample security services, stepped in.”

Daniel Gutiérrez: “Seizing the Times: Five Theses on Militant Development”

“We are confronted by a moment of impossible historical importance where the decisions we make, and the possibilities we seize or do not seize, will define the shape of what all our tomorrows look like. This moment has been produced by the overlapping crises of neoliberalism, social reproduction, climate catastrophe, and the coronavirus pandemic that have articulated and fused into a combined crisis of unfathomable proportions. So long as this objective crisis remains unresolved, a revolutionary opportunity is presented to us, but we must organize ourselves into a subjective force capable of seizing it.”

Josep Rafanell i Orra: “The world returns: Outlines of an anti-politics”

‘Only our enemies persist with identities. We cannot consent to our camp, that of friends, being devastated by exasperated social identities, as if it were a new business for politics. We have learned that only de-identification signals the eruption that defeats the police order. … Let us be clear: against the police, what is called for is not a politics of identities, but one of commoners or commonalities under construction; not “I am this or that”, always scarred at not being enough of what one claims to be, but what am I becoming in the infinite variation of the relations between beings?  The important question remains. If the community is the affirmation of shared forms of life, it is also the confrontation with that which denies its possibility.  We are not done with the insurgencies. But how can we get beyond the circle of destitution, and then beyond the new social constitutions which again separate us from the plural worlds of common lives?’

Thomas Jeffrey Miley: “The Kurdish Freedom Movement, Rojava and the Left”

The Kurdish revolution faces great challenges going forward. But the revolutionary forces have already made history. Their project of Democratic Confederalism, with its emphasis on direct democracy against the state, multicultural accommodation, gender emancipation and social ecology, inspired people across the globe. At a time when the future of humanity and life on the planet are facing unprecedented threats, the revolutionary experiment in Rojava stands out as a valiant attempt in the midst of a still-unfolding catastrophe to construct a radical democratic alternative to spiraling violence and tyranny.”

CrimethInc: “The Cop-Free Zone: Reflections from Experiments in Autonomy around the US”

“The cop-free zone is not the particular block or traffic circle or park. It is the shared commitment to defending a space and eliminating the dynamics of policing and white supremacy.  In the following collection, we explore some people’s experiences attempting to create police-free autonomous zones in different parts of the United States.”

Kate Derickson: “Community Defense in Minneapolis We are not yet after a revolution”

“We are not yet after a revolution and so we are situated in the liminal space of prefiguration. We can imagine it, but we cannot yet make it so. But it might be even harder than this particular tension implies. It might even be the case that to prefigure the world we desire—on the fly, and horizontally—runs the risk of importing the very grammars we wish to abolish.”

“Free Food, Free Speech and Free of Police: Inside Seattle’s ‘Autonomous Zone’”

“What has emerged is an experiment in life without the police — part street festival, part commune. Hundreds have gathered to hear speeches, poetry and music.”

Raoul Vaneigem: “Everything Starts Here and Now”

Peaceful insurrection is demilitarized guerilla war. It must have the self-organization of autonomous communes as its basis and goal. Our most powerful enemy isn’t so much the authority of the master as the resignation of the slaves.”