For Foucault, we should pay serious attention to the file, rather than dismiss it as a mere bundle of administrative minutiae, because it produces what he called “an administrative and centralized individuality” through disciplinary mechanisms of visibility and writing.
One obvious lesson of Steve Wright’s new book is not to confuse political possibility with media saturation and ceaseless engagement. At the same time, it is instructive to revisit a popular tradition in which distrust of mainstream media and enjoyment of its popular subversion took a radically progressive form.
On this basis, one practice of blockading—of geographically isolated assertions of land-based sovereignty by remote nations—connects directly with another, the chokepoint protests of organizers in cities and distribution centers. This conveys the agency of Indigenous land defenders directly to urban locales, and drafts new possibilities for settler and working-class solidarity with anti-colonial struggle—a solidarity that again traverses the infrastructure it would obstruct, in a demonstration appropriate to the scale of global capitalism.
For Nunes, it is vital to embrace an ecological vision of the so-called Organisationsfrage, starting from the irreducible subjective pluralism present within a given environment. This vision thus involves thinking, in ecosystemic terms, the space within which the various subjects strive to transform the world, with the awareness that one is an integral part of the milieu in which one is immersed.
The entirety of the US governing class; every analyst, think-tanker, and DC official likely to appear in major American media; almost every US news network: all perpetuated an imperial fantasy and, thereby, the events now unfolding. Professed shock at the Taliban takeover requires the mystification of both the daily reality of war in Afghanistan and the complicity of the shocked.
During Israel’s brutal eleven-day assault on Gaza – itself only an escalation of its daily devastation of Palestinian life – I turned to the writings of the Palestinian novelist and militant Ghassan Kanafani.
The following is an excerpt from Rodrigo Nunes’ new book, Neither Vertical Nor Horizontal: A Theory of Political Organisation, out now with Verso. Part balance sheet of the struggles of the last decade, part diagnosis of the left’s traumas and melancholias in the last forty years, part attempt to develop a theory of organization that avoids sterile oppositions between ‘horizontalism’… Read more →
Over the course of fifty days, Amazon mobilized dozens of consultants and influencers, created websites, sent dozens of anti-union messages to every employee on Twitter and WhatsApp, and called a hundred meetings with mandatory participation during working hours. On the other hand, the union avoided mobilizing its members with public protest actions and did not organize moments of active solidarity with other Amazon centers and other unions.
Andreas Malm develops a method designed to abolish ambivalence: herein lies the clarity of his work. His approach may best be described as kaleidoscopic: it orders the heterogeneous shards of history through the mirrors of his theory of history, while a singular eyepiece provides focus, and the basis for a unified political perspective. But this method only avoids ambivalence in theory. When it comes to practice, ambivalences reappear – but in the blindspot of theory. Reviews of Malm’s individual works may miss these blindspots and ambivalences, but once we read them side by side, we can begin to understand that they are structural to his work.
Any specific struggle over environmental noxiousness is meaningful only if it is connected to a wider battle against the noxiousness of the capitalist organization of work.
In this perspective, the gray zones of labor, inside and outside capitalist enterprises, can be understood as zones of production of a divided subjectivity, a schizophrenic subjectivity. For me, it is not so much a question of identifying a subject as of understanding the processes of desubjectification: that is, the individual and collective processes that allow us to dispose of subjectivity as it is produced.