Blogs

About the Networked Revolution tag and where I'm going with it

Swans, ducks & seagulls in Hyde Park - photo by Andrew FloodRegular readers may have noticed I’ve recently starting tagging articles & blogs with Networked Revolution some of which  don’t appear to have a direct connection to the revolutionary implications of social media. This is because I’m using this tag as a catch all for the blogs & articles I’m publishing questioning how we traditionally understand revolutionary organisation in the new conditions of today.

I’ve expanded this beyond simply being about the technology to the behaviors this new technology makes possible and also the conflicts it is creating. One aspect of this is the material looking as the arguments around what is often called ‘intersectionality’ although in terms of left practice the term micropolitics may be more useful.  In meat space I’ve had a few people asking me what I’m up to, surprised I suspect that I’ve been quite sympathetic to this set of ideas and methods while most on the left (particularly those over a certain age) are unrelenting in their hostility. Someone even told me I’m ‘playing a clever game’ so I thought it might be a good idea to clarify that this is a genuine exploration and explain some of what has prompted it.

"Direct Action Against Capital: A Peter Kropotkin Anthology" now published

First, the good news: Direct Action Against Capital: A Peter Kropotkin Anthology is now published and has arrived at both AK Press in Scotland and America. If you do decide to buy it (and I do think it is worth buying!) then please do so via AK Press or a radical bookshop.

Details of the 2014 Dublin anarchist book fair

It's that time of year again and I've been busy, busy, busy with the online promotion of the 2014 Dublin anarchist bookfair.  I've included the details below so that any of you in Dublin are sure to get to it and if I've the time post bookfair I'll write up some of the lessons in terms of both promotion and engagement learned from it this time around.  Its going to be a blast, if you will be in Dublin you don't want to miss this!


There will be discussions, speakers from movements engaged in struggle, home and abroad.  There will be books and stalls and much more.  If you’ve been to one, then you know what I’m talking about, if you haven’t make sure you keep the date set aside, and we’ll be seeing you on the 12th of April.

Please mark your attendence on the main Facebook event for the bookfair and invite any friends you think should be interested.  Publicity is one of the big costs of hosting it every year so you contribution in that way really helps.

 

Late addition: We are pleased to announce that Selma James is taking part in this years Dublin Anarchist Bookfair.

 

Before and during the bookfair we encourage you to tweet to #dabf

An Anarchist FAQ version 15.0 released (18/03/2014)

An Anarchist FAQ is now at version 15.0. This release is a revision of the appendix replying to David McNally's attack on anarchism and defend of Leninism:

Kropotkin Anthology Questions and Answers

A short update. Suffice to say, I’m been very busy of late. I decided to get back to revising An Anarchist FAQ, namely its appendices – starting with the critique of David McNally’s terrible “Socialism from Below” pamphlet. It has taken more time than I had anticipated – mostly due to how bad it is.

Micropolitics and the Left

Sema dancing Sufi in gas mask at Gezi Park demonstrations in Turkey

This article is an attempt to investigate certain problems of the left via the lens of micropolitics and macropolitics, terms first introduced by Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari (henceforth D&G). Faced with the challenging nature of texts from post-structuralist thinkers like D&G or Foucault, many people make the assumption that they are really motivated by an elitist desire to confuse, intimidate and befuddle the masses and divert theory into useless abstractions, far removed from the concerns of ordinary people for social transformation and liberation from oppression and exploitation. However a careful reading of D&G’s Micropolitics and Segmentarity chapter in “A Thousand Plateaus” (ATP) reveals they have two main objects in their theorising there - to make sense of the experience of fascism in the 1930s and 1940s and the (then) more recent uprisings of Paris May ‘68. We will try to extend that to looking at more recent problems, passing via the Poll Tax riots of 1990 to looking at today’s current controversies around intersectionality

 

IMAGE: By Azirlazarus (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0
(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

What's behind the Polish Bishops crusade against Gender Theory?

In what appears to be an attempt to deflect attention from a string of paedophile priest scandals the Catholic Church in Poland has launched an attack on what it is calling gender theory. It's reactionary theological musings are tricky to unpick but in essence the church seems to be trying to use the fact that people's gender identities can be other than what they were assigned or simply fluid and that in any case do not define who they are in a 'blue for boys, pink for girls' fashion, to create a populist panic in defence of 'traditional' male privilege.

Anarchism and Asymmetry

This is an old forum post from October 2012. I sought it out recently as I needed the Cliff reference for something I am currently working on in relation to asymmetry as a basic anarchist strategic principle, alongside prefiguration. I repost it here for my own records and future reference convenience.

[in answer to the question: "What's the absolute minimum someone has to believe in order to be an anarchist]

Yet another SWP numpty on anarchism (part 4)

Happy new year! Hope everyone has a good 2014. First post of the year, namely a review of Alex Prichard’s Justice, Order and Anarchy: The International Political Theory of Pierre-Joseph Proudhon (Routledge, 2013). As yous will see, I think it is rather good. Hopefully this will see the start of a general better understanding of Proudhon’s ideas in the English speaking world – at the very least, within anarchist circles.

The Nostalgic Left

 

The nostalgic left is a bit of shorthand I’ve started using for those on the left who have reacted to the disintegration of the old left by wishing for idealised simpler times. And perhaps more strangely blaming the collapse on what they see as threatening new developments, like intersectionality. They hold such newfangled nonsense responsible for the current failure of the left to get an echo from the general population.

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