Category Archives: founding

Yavor Tarinski interviewed on “Direct democracy and the passion for political participation”

‘If we want create a radically democratic and ecological society, we will have to abandon all bureaucratic and exploitative means. It is not enough to consume ethically or vote for the lesser evil. We have to build democratic and resilient communities capable of confederating with each other so as to tackle large-scale issues. As Castoriadis has said, “an autonomous society cannot be instaurated except through the autonomous activity of the collectivity.” This might sound too general or abstract, but the direct democracy of which we are speaking represents such a paradigm shift, that must surpass both globalization and localism and can lead towards genuine social emancipation.’

Richard Youngs: “After Protest: Pathways beyond Mass Mobilization”

‘The case studies show that the standard criticism that activists singularly fail to move “from protest to politics” is no longer entirely fair—even if this might have been valid to some extent a decade or more ago. Yet they also suggest that maintaining effective postprotest activism can be far harder than organizing an influential protest and that all postprotest pathways easily encounter serious obstacles.’

James L. Gelvin: “Turkish attack on Syria endangers a remarkable democratic experiment by the Kurds”

‘The key to understanding the Rojava project, as those involved often refer to it, is the notion of “confederalism.” In this form of government, local units – in this case, Kurdistan’s “autonomous regions” – come together in a federation yet retain a great deal of autonomy.’

Jeffrey Ostler: “The Great Fear of 1776”

“It may be unsettling to consider the creation of the United States as a genocidal project, but the experiences of many of eastern North America’s Indigenous people led them to think of it in precisely this way. Examining their reasons does not necessarily mandate agreement with their conclusion, but it does ask us to take their fears more seriously than we have.”

James C. Scott interviewed

On revolution and resistance

 

Tikva Honig-Parnass: “A community in arms: the Indigenous roots of the EZLN”

‘By building a “democracy from below,” the Zapatistas recognize the leadership of, and carry on a long tradition of resistance by Indigenous communities in Chiapas.’

“Tierra y libertad: The Mexican Revolution”

“The 100th anniversary of the murder of Emiliano Zapata by the Mexican military (10/04/1919) is the occasion to share texts on the country’s revolution (1910-1920), a revolution profoundly marked by anarchist ideals and practices, ideals and practices which very often found expression in much older indigenous social relations, and which have continued to resonate through the history of this land’s peoples.”

Sara Salem: “Trajectories of Anticolonialism in Egypt”

“The forms of solidarity imagined by radical groups such as Egyptian feminists, workers, and students often broke free of the exclusionary imaginary of the nation state that always came back to exert itself on the articulations of leaders and state representatives. While both ends of this spectrum within anticolonial movements called for decolonization that was global, the ways in which they imagined this was vastly different.”

Alain Badiou interviewed about the Gilets Jaunes, Macron and future of the French left.

“Things are happening, anarchically, as is always the case with beginnings. Experiments must be linked to a careful, prolonged and systematic examination of Marxism, but also to the revolutionary attempts of the twentieth century as a whole. What really happened in Petrograd and Shanghai? What is the balance sheet? What formulation allows us to avoid the failures of these undertakings?”

Julia Lovell: “Maoism marches on: The revolutionary idea that still shapes the world”

“The west has assumed that Maoism, like Soviet communism, has been left in the dust: no European rebels these days carry a Little Red Book. But the ideology is resurgent in China and remains hugely influential elsewhere.”