Monthly Archives: May 2010

Sunday Papers #7: 16th May

* A bleak analysis of a day in the life of an academic. As much as many of us, especially those wanting to pursue a career in academia, would like to think otherwise, the ivory tower of academic labour isn’t impregnable. The battering ram of capital extends everywhere…

* Greek magazine “The Flesh Machine” shuts down in response to the actions of “professional revolutionaries” (the specialists in social change of “Give Up Activism”) within the Greek uprising and the lack of a critical response to the deaths of three bank workers in a recent protest. Interesting to see an involved criticism of the uprising. If you can manage to wade through the perhaps overly pretentious language it contains an important criticism of those seeking to channel and foreclose the potentail of the Greek uprising. Resonates with wider discussions about the role of “activism” within social change, although in a situation very alien to that which many of us, particularly here in the UK, have experience of.

* Good analysis of the Berlin phenomenon of car burning. Perhaps a little romanticised in the style of the coming insurrection (which it references) and the Situationist international’s analysis of the Watts riot. However it is an interesting take on an interesting phenomenon. Also, check this German website mapping the car burning in Berlin.

* Article on Calais by Dariush Sokolov. Can Calais be seen as the intensification of the European security regime?

* And finally… Kanellos the Greek street dog who is a constant presence at demonstrations in Athens. Apparently, he has never sided with the police at any demonstrations.

R

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On the Crisis of Capital…

The great scandal of global capital is that it is choking itself up on the pyramids of accumulated abstract wealth. Yet, when looking at social conditions, when listening to the ever more urgent demand for greater labour flexibility, it seems as if the global crisis is really just a consequence of a scarcity of capital.

Werner Bonefeld, Against War and the Preconditions of War.

Written before the invasion of Iraq. Still true now.

R

Sunday Papers #6

* With the elections drawing in I’m sure lots of you are feeling a bit tired of the media hype in what is, lets face it, an even less inspiring election than usual. With the global economy, in particular its finance markets, visibly in distress and people clamouring for solutions its remarkable how underwhelming the major parties responses has been. Austerity or economic collapse sounds less like a choice and more like a threat. Last Hours put forth their argument that politics happens in more places than just the Houses of Parliament.

* Interesting article from Mute about Casa Pound, an Italian populist right wing movement sharing many characteristics with it’s autonomous left movement counter-parts. Also has an illuminating, if brief, genealogy of the Italian far right post-Mussolini. Although not delving into Casa Pound’s analysis too much, the article highlights the similarity between certain far right positions and some of those who would call themselves anti-capitalist.

* Yet another online academic library, this time housed at Bedeutung magazine, a infrequently published magazine discussing art, philosophy and culture. Lots of Zizek, Adorno and Agamben articles.

* John Holloway responds to criticisms of his book ‘Changing the World Without Taking Power’. A strong, passionate yet humble article discussing how to begin rethinking about the concept of revolution today. His analysis rest on the fragility, rather than endurance, of Capital. He interprets Marxs’ Capital, along with Kurz, as a negative theory of crisis rather than a positive theory of social change. Well worth reading.

* The continued rise of discrimination against Muslims continues in Europe. The Belgian parliament votes for a banning of the Burka. Indicatively this isn’t even attempted to be justified by appeals to gender equality, but rather to security.

Happy mayday for yesterday!

R