Category Archives: power

‘What Have We Done With Democracy?’ A Decade On, Arab Spring Gains Wither

Tunisia, birthplace of the pro-democracy uprisings that swept the Arab world, now looks to many like a final confirmation of failed promise.”

John Tarleton: “The Rise of Occupy Wall Street: The Movement Moment That Revived The U.S. Left”

“Ten years ago this fall a protest movement took root in Lower Manhattan that transformed how we think about inequality and reinvigorated the Left.”

Kiersten Solt, V.I.: “Seven theses on destitution”

Constituent vs. destituent insurrections

Rinaldo Walcott on Riots, Policing, and Traditions of Black Refusal

“The Black riot is a refusal of entrenched policing practices that has boiled over. The riot is an expression of revolt with a historical basis in slavery. In activist circles, riots have been renamed uprisings, thereby giving their actions a deeper meaning. And the difference isn’t merely semantic. Riots often garner the attention of state authorities in a way that so-called peaceful protests do not. The riot, or uprising, is an important element of the quest for Black freedom.”

CrimethInc: “Columbia: A general strike as insurrection”

“Despite brutal state repression, Colombia’s general strike has continued strong now for 23 days. The revolt has largely been leaderless and solidarity has expanded to include an impressively wide array of Colombian society: Indigenous and Afro-Colombian movements, queer and trans people, workers, students, people whose precarious employment has been lost to the pandemic. As in many other recent uprisings around the world, this one has been driven first and foremost by youth who know that their only hope to have any future at all is to fight for it. Millions are united in their rejection of unlivable conditions and horrific police violence.”

Sumanta Banerjee: “Embers of the Paris Commune”

“This year we are celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Paris Commune of 1871 – the biggest urban insurrection of the nineteenth century, that led to the setting up of a grass roots based popular government in Paris, albeit for only about two months, before it was crushed by the Versailles troops at the end of May that year. But during that brief period of popular sovereignty, that government – known as the `Commune’, meaning the smallest unit of local governance – laid the foundations of a model of decentralization of power, that has continued to inspire generations all over the world.”

Seraj Assi: “It’s Obvious — Israel Is an Apartheid State”

‘There are no “clashes” occurring in Jerusalem between Israelis and Palestinians. What we’re seeing is the brutal reality of an occupying power exercising its military might over a people stripped of their human rights.’

Raoul Vaneigem: “Back to Basics: Theses on and Observations about the Struggle in France”

“It is up to us to learn to be reborn in the rebirth of the world.”

Brian Meeks: “How a Revolution on the Tiny Island of Grenada Shook the World”

Revolutions are, inevitably, fraught periods of great danger and uncertainty. At their moment of triumph, the old order is temporarily prostrate, but there remains great hostility to the new regime both internally and internationally. The chances of initial consolidation and success are slim, and the very act of asserting authority in order to survive becomes the definitive and often negative signature of revolution.”

Kevin Duong: “Flash Mob: Revolution, Lightning, and the People’s Will”

“Leading French revolutionaries, in need of an image to represent the all important “will of the people”, turned to the thunderbolt — a natural symbol of power and illumination that also signalled the scientific ideals so key to their project.”