European Autonomous Social Movements And The Decolonization Of Everyday Life
Since the modern anti-globalization movement kicked off with the 1999 WTO protests in Seattle, a new generation has been engaging in anti-capitalist direct action. Its aims, politics, lifestyles, and tactics grow directly out of the autonomous social movements that emerged in Europe from the 1970s through the mid-1990s. In fact, today's infamous "Black Blocs" are the direct descendants of the European "Autonomen." But these important historical connections are rarely noted, and never understood.
The Subversion of Politics sets the record straight, filling in the gaps between the momentous events of 1968 and 1999. Katsiaficas presents the protagonists of social revolt - Italian feminists, squatters, disarmament and anti-nuclear activists, punk rockers, and anti-fascist street fighters - in a compelling and sympathetic light. At the same time, he offers a work of great critical depth, drawing from these political practices a new theory of freedom and autonomy that redefines the parameters of the political itself.
George Katsiaficas - Fulbright fellow, former student of Herbert Marcuse, and long-time activist - is Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences at Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston, Massachusetts. Author or editor of more than 10 books, he is writing a book on the Gwangju Uprising and East Asian social movements.
"...a scholarly gem which is indispensable reading for anyone interested in how social change occurs, especially in the advanced industrial countries." - Carl Boggs, National University
"This book is an important corrective to the all-too-common view that global capitalism is triumphant, that there is no basis for opposing the values it promotes." - Barbara Epstein, University of California at Santa Cruz
"This elegantly and lively account has been meticulously researched and reveals new antisystemic forms of participatory democracy for achieving a greater individual and community control over everyday life. Thus the book's most notable value is to offer us some perspective on how to limit the damaging effects of global capitalism on our lives." - Susanne Peters, University of Giessen
"AK Press's republication of George Katsiaficas's The Subversion of Politics comes at a good moment: when autonomous social movements are redefining the politics of the Americas from Mexico to Argentina. Katsiaficas's book is a unique history of autonomists in Italy, Germany and other parts Europe from the 1970s on. It affords a better understanding of the similarities (and differences) between the autonomy of the American and European movements. It is a good place to think and re-think the anti-party politics of the future." - George Caffentzis, Midnight Notes Collective
Book, 299 pages (AK Press)