Practising (for) utopia

by Ruth Kinna This essay[1] highlights the constructive, utopian possibilities that spring from a sense of political compromise and argues that this distinctive type of utopian practice lends itself particularly well to anarchism. To show the distinctiveness of the approach in anarchist thought, the paper examines two other models of utopianism: one called realist and the other experiential. The argument is that, while all these conceptions of anarchist utopianism are valuable, the experiments that stem from compromise not only have the potential to inspire activists but also challenge non-anarchists to consider the costs of their everyday, apparently mundane decisions. On … Continue reading Practising (for) utopia

Reflections on resistance, reform, and revolution

by Ross Wolfe How can the respective political modes of resistance, reform, and revolution be deployed to advance social and individual freedom? How might they reinforce each other on a reciprocal basis? Today, with the recent upsurge in global activism, we stand on the precipice of what promises to herald the rebirth of such a politics. These questions have acquired a renewed sense of urgency in this light. Now more than ever, they demand our attention if we are to forge a way forward without repeating the mistakes of the past. Reform, revolution, and resistance — each of these concepts exercises … Continue reading Reflections on resistance, reform, and revolution

Taking notes 25: On cyber syndicalism — from Hacktivism to Workers’ Control

by Jeff Shantz Alternative globalization movements in the global North, from their high point in the Quebec City mobilizations against the Free Trade Area of the Americas in 2001 to the present, have been faced with the challenge of rebuilding and finding new ground on which to re-mobilize since the political reaction set in following the 9/11 attacks which derailed momentum and caused many mainstream elements (especially labor unions) to disengage and demobilize (where not playing to the forces of “law and order” reaction). One effect of the post-9/11 freeze (it has been more than a chill) has been the … Continue reading Taking notes 25: On cyber syndicalism — from Hacktivism to Workers’ Control

Taking notes 18: On the need for Infrastructures of Resistance

by Jeff Shantz The habitat in which twentieth century radicalism could thrive no longer exists in the form that previously sustained radical movements and ideas (Sears, 2008: 8). Anarchism and socialism, the forms of political radicalism that animated much resistance of the working classes, poor and oppressed, were vital as components of broader infrastructures of resistance. These infrastructures developed within contexts of particular organizations of life and work. The last few decades have ushered in significant changes in the organization of social relations and conditions of production, which have transformed the possibilities for specific political projects (Sears, 2008: 8). Emerging … Continue reading Taking notes 18: On the need for Infrastructures of Resistance

Radical criminology: A manifesto

by Jeff Shantz In this period of state-sponsored austerity and suppression of resistance there is a great need for criminologists to speak out and act against state violence, state-corporate crime, and the growth of surveillance regimes and the prison-industrial complex. Criminologists also have a role to play in advancing alternatives to current regimes of regulation and punishment. In light of current social struggles against neo-liberal capitalism, and as an effort to contribute positively to those struggles, the Critical Criminology Working Group at Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Vancouver (Canada) has initiated the journal Radical Criminology. We hope you will enjoy our … Continue reading Radical criminology: A manifesto

Towards a post-Occupy world

by Richard J. White Running deeply through radical critiques that have emerged across dissident academic, activist and public communities — critiques that have pricked the mainstream consciousness through their repeated denouncement of both the legitimacy and the desirability of the current orthodox economic and political system — is the spirit of Ya Basta! (‘Enough! Now for something else!’). As Wight (2012: 161) argued: One thing is clear, irrespective of how it will all end, the Arab Spring, looting in London, riots in Greece, wars across the Middle East and beyond, the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), and the Occupy Movement are … Continue reading Towards a post-Occupy world