Magazine

Articles from one of the WSM magazines

Interview: Belfast Co-operatives.

Date:
Belfast has seen something of a surge of co-operatively run businesses in recent years as more people are faced with the choice between precarious work and unemployment with meagre dole payments. Belfast is now home to a taxi co-op, Union Taxis, a cleaning co-op, Belfast Cleaning Society, a co-operatively run café, Lúnasa, and a digital media co-op, The Creative Workers’ Co-Op - to name but a few. We sat down with Clem and Colin, two of the three members of the Creative Workers’ Co-Op, and Elena from Lúnasa to get their thoughts on co-ops in Belfast.
 

Domination, Capitalism, and Economic Crises.

Date:
The history of capitalism has been a of history domination; of landowners’ domination over tenants, of bosses’ domination over workers, of economically robust countries’ domination over developing economies. of bloody labour struggles, social struggles, and of many crises, which have the most devastating effect on the working class, those furthest away from the levers of power and influence. As the framework of capitalism has developed, its systems have expanded in complexity, but paradoxically also in fragility.
 

Irish Anarchist Review Issue 11

Date:

The eleventh issue of the Irish Anarchist Review goes to press in the middle of the biggest battle in the war against austerity in Ireland to date. Tens of thousands of people have taken part in mass demonstrations against the water charges, up and down the country thousands have taken part in acts of physical resistance against water meter installation and hundreds of thousands, at the very least, are getting ready to participate in a mass boycott of the charge. Furthermore, the level of political consciousness of the population has risen considerably over the last year, with a distinct anti-establishment atmosphere, and in some cases an anti-state atmosphere, developing.

[Download the PDF]

 

Murray Bookchin ­- The Next Revolution (Review)

Date:

Despite being a pathbreaking figure from the 1960s onward in anarchist, green, and directly­ democratic political circles ­ having predicted early on the significance of ecological issues and technology to left­wing social struggles ­ Murray Bookchin today remains unknown to many on the left, and to those who do know of him he remains controversial.

Disliked by class struggle anarchists and Marxists for his advocacy of community organising over workplace organising, and by anarchists involved in single ­issue activism for their lack of organisation and supposed concern with personal rebellion over social change, he made quite a few enemies in his last days for fiery polemics directed at his intellectual opponents. While his supporters in organisations like New Compass defend him for his consistency, others argue that he ended up alienating potential allies by refusing to ever waver on his specific revolutionary vision: focused on creating a municipal­ confederation of ecological communities practicing direct­ democracy, founded on a philosophy of science, reason, and humanism.

This new collection of essays from the last few years of his life may provide a useful entry­ point of his philosophical and political project called social ecology and generate further debate for the future of libertarian socialist organising in an age of increasing militarism and climate crisis.

 

 

Review: Silvio Federici's Caliban and the Witch – Women, the body and ‘Primitive Accumulation’

Date:

This piece of work is undertaken from the viewpoint of the seemingly invisible struggles of women against authoritarian rule, the historical erasing of women as being part of the wider social struggles for liberation against oppression, and indeed, providing a different type of revolutionary struggle in their own right instead of examining the effects of social reproduction and labour of women.

 

Paris Bakery and EF Language School Workers Speak Out

Date:

One of the key principles underpinning anarchist politics and philosophy is that of self-organisation.  And one of the key principles underpinning self-organisation is the belief that it is by doing that people learn.

 

Very few people come to radical politics through what they read or through ‘education’ in the traditional sense.  It is usually through becoming involved in a struggle that directly affects themselves and their neighbours/work colleagues that most people come to see the power structures of society and begin a process of analysis of how society operates and how it needs to change if the needs of ordinary people are to be met.

 

Futurism or the Future: Review of the Manifesto for an Accelerationist Politics

Date:
The proliferation of computerised surveillance and security systems across workplaces has had the effect that now, in offices across the world, workers’ toilet usage is continuously monitored. You swipe your ID card to get in and out, producing a data event with a time and duration, which is quietly recorded by some computer.
 
Upstairs, some horrendous bureaucrat ponders over all this data: How long does a shit take? How many shits is too many? Does she have a medical condition, or is she just slacking? Copropolitics: a new technology of discipline and a fresh form of indignity that was inconceivable as anything other than a cyberpunk nightmare (and a dull one at that) a couple of decades ago; the kind of technological revolution that no-one wanted, and nobody is particularly excited about, but which nonetheless happens.
 

Hope, Friendship and Surprise in the Zombie Time of Capitalism: An interview with Gustavo Esteva

Date:

Gustavo Esteva is an independent writer and grassroots activist. He has been a central contributor to a wide range of Mexican, Latin American, and international nongovernmental organizations and solidarity networks, including the Universidad de la Tierra en Oaxaca and the Zapatista Army of National Liberation. The WSM's Tom Murray caught up with Gustavo at a recent public lecture at the Kimmage Development Centre to discuss hope, friendship and surprise in the zombie-time of capitalism, and how people are taking initiatives, reclaiming control of their lives and creating vibrant, autonomous alternatives here today.

Irish Anarchist Review Issue 10

Date:

Welcome to the tenth instalment of the Irish Anarchist Review, published for the 2014 London Anarchist Bookfair.

Five years ago, the Irish Anarchist Review replaced Red and Black Revolution as the magazine of the Workers Solidarity Movement. It’s mission was to fill a vacuum in Irish radical circles, to be a publication that raised questions and provoked debate, rather than laying out blueprints for success, as had been the norm in the more theoretical work of the left. It was established at a time where a fightback was believed to be imminent, when the expectation was that as the (economic) beatings continued, morale would improve.

 
The intervening years produced a series of false starts. The big ICTU demonstrations in the infancy of the crisis proved to be safety valves for the expulsion of steam from the rank and file, and were tightly controlled by the bureaucracy. The Occupy phenomenon was a reaction against that type of protest, and it did release a wave of creative energy, but it’s structurelessness ultimately had the same effect, and that energy escaped into the ether. There have also been strikes and occupations, the Unlock Nama campaign, the campaign against household and water taxes (CAHWT) and a massive resurgence in the campaign for abortion access.

 

 

Review: 100 Years Later: The Legacy of the 1913 Lockout.

Date:
History has traditionally been viewed through the prism of ‘great leaders’ or ‘powerful men’ (and it usually is men).  In recent years, however, the importance of community or local history – and the contributions of ‘ordinary’ people to great events – has been recognised.  To paraphrase Jim Larkin “The great leaders only appear great because of the commitment, sacrifice and energy of ordinary people”.
 
“100 Years Later – The Legacy of the 1913 Lockout”, edited by Mary Muldowney and Ida Milne and published by Seven Towers, is a strong and powerful contribution to shining a light on the “hardship and heroism that was part of that epic struggle.”
 

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