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

Totalitarian Paranoia in the Post-Orwellian Surveillance State

by Henry A. Giroux Surveillance, in any land where it is ubiquitous and inescapable, generates distrust and divisions among its citizens, curbs their readiness to speak freely to each other, and diminishes their willingness to even dare to think freely. — Ariel Dorfman The revelations of whistle-blowers such as Chelsea Manning, Jeremy Hammond and Edward Snowden about government lawlessness and corporate spying provide a new meaning if not a revitalized urgency and relevance to George Orwell’s dystopian fable 1984. Orwell offered his readers an image of the modern state that had become dystopian — one in which privacy as a civil … Continue reading Totalitarian Paranoia in the Post-Orwellian Surveillance State

Dangerous pedagogy

by Henry A. Giroux All over the world, the forces of neoliberalism are on the march dismantling the historically guaranteed social provisions provided by the welfare state, defining profit making and market freedoms as the essence of democracy, while diminishing civil liberties as part of the alleged “war” against terrorism. Secure in its dystopian vision that there are no alternatives to a market society, free market fundamentalism eliminates issues of contingency, struggle, and social agency by celebrating the inevitability of economic laws in which the ethical ideal of intervening in the world gives way to the idea that we “have … Continue reading Dangerous pedagogy