The world is facing a wave of uprisings, protests and revolutions: Arab dictators swept away, public spaces occupied, slum-dwellers in revolt, cyberspace buzzing with utopian dreams. Events we were told were consigned to history—democratic revolt and social revolution—are being lived by millions of people.
In this compelling new book, Paul Mason explores the causes and consequences of this great unrest. From Cairo to Athens, Wall Street and Westminster to Manila, Mason goes in search of the changes in society, technology and human behaviour that have propelled a generation onto the streets in search of social justice. In a narrative that blends historical insight with first-person reportage, Mason shines a light on these new forms of activism, from the vast, agile networks of cyberprotest to the culture wars and tent camps of the #occupy movement. The events, says Mason, reflect the expanding power of the individual and call for new political alternatives to elite rule and global poverty.
Paperback, 244 pages
$19.95 / £12.99 / $25.00CAN
Ebook, 256 pages
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"Two years on from the Arab Spring, I’m clearer about what it was that it inaugurated: it is a revolution. In some ways it parallels the revolutions of before – 1848, 1830, 1789 – and there are also echoes of the Prague spring, the US civil rights movement, the Russian ‘mad summer of 1874’ … but in other ways it is unique. Above all, the relationship between the physical and the mental, the political and the cultural, seems to be inverted. There is a change in consciousness, the intuition that something big is possible, that a great change in the world’s priorities is within people’s grasp."
Earlier this month, BBC economics editor and author of Why It’s Still Kicking Off Everywhere Paul Mason, took part in two conversations in New York, which are now available online.
On April 11, Mason talked to NYU students about his journalism. A video of the talk—which includes his film about the neo-fascist party España 2000—can be viewed here.
Last week, Mason spoke to American labor journalists Sarah Jaffe and Josh Eidelson about Margaret Thatcher, austerity resistance in Europe, and the end of the neoliberal era, for the second episode of Dissent magazine’s new podcast, Belabored. To listen, click here and to subscribe, search “Belabored” in iTunes.