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    Direct Action is 40% off

    At a perilous time in American politics, a groundbreaking history of protest

    "This startling, inspiring book is for anyone who has ever felt the urge to put their body on the line and shut things down for something they believe in.” – Astra Taylor, author of The People’s Platform

    Direct Action: Protest and the Reinvention of American Radicalism
    , by L.A. Kauffman is 40% off through Friday, March 24 at midnight UTC!


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    Arun Kundnani

    “One of Britain's best political writers.” — Guardian

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    Arundhati Roy

    “The fierceness with which Arundhati Roy loves humanity moves my heart.” – Alice Walker
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    Michele Wallace

    “Courageous, outspoken, clear-eyed.” — Publishers Weekly
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    Juliet Jacques

    “Powerful and engaging.” — New York Times

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    Ta-Nehisi Coates

    “The young James Joyce of the hip-hop generation.” — Walter Mosley 

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    Angela Y. Davis

    “Angela Davis taught me that I did not have to tolerate the racism I was suffering in the playground, she told me that I was not alone.’” 
    – Benjamin Zephaniah




  • George Monbiot on Neoliberalism: "A self-serving racket"

    "Neoliberalism is a self-serving racket that exempts billionaires and large corporations from the constraints of democracy, from paying their taxes, from not polluting, from having to pay fair wages, from not exploiting their workers" - watch the video in full below or here.

    George Monbiot's bestselling book How Did We Get Into This Mess? is now out in paperback and 40% off until Mar 19 (midnight UTC), with free shipping and bundled ebook.

    Watch the full interview with George - where he discusses Trump, Brexit, migration, grassroots political community building, climate change, and more - here.

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  • India: Liberal Democracy and the Extreme Right

    Aijaz Ahmad's essay on the history of the far right in India and its encroachment into the country's liberal institutions was included in the the Idea of India, Background Papers, EMS Smrithi Series compiled by M.N. Sudhakaran et al, Thrissur, June 2016 and previously published online by The Indian Cultural Forum.

    Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh meeting, 1939. via Wikimedia Commons.

    Indian liberalism makes a formidable claim: that the Republic is grounded in such a structurally elaborate and ideologically hegemonic liberal-democratic institutional framework that political forces of all hues are forced to consent to this framework, stake their claims and test out their fortunes within it, go in and out of the corridors of power through procedures of electoral democracy, and thereby further strengthen the liberal framework itself. It is further claimed that since all political forces, from the communist to the fascist, are compelled to accept the norms of universal franchise and multi-party elections, they are further compelled to move closer to the liberal centre as soon as they begin to participate in the exercise of governmental power. For the political centre of this power is itself circumscribed by equally powerful institutions of the civil bureaucracy, an independent judiciary, a freewheeling fourth estate, as well as a vibrant and highly articulate civil society. And, indeed, more than enough empirical evidence is available for one to construct a plausible narrative of post-Independence India on such premises. Its plausibility is what gives to the claim such persuasive power.

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  • Direct Action is 40% off this week only!

    In the wake of Trump's election and many outrageous executive orders, as well as the EU referendum and the rise of far-right political movements around the world, direct action tactics are needed now more than ever. We saw a huge turn out and a diversity of tactics for the March 8th International Women's Strike and Day Without a Woman campaign, and the largest rally in US history, along with global solidarity rallys, for the Women's March on Washington following Trump's inauguration. 

    The mass mobilizations we've seen recently are an uplifting reminder of the power of ordinary people to effect change. To guide us in our future struggles, we need to learn from the lessons of activist movements from the past.

    There's no better guide than L.A. Kauffman's new book, Direct Action: Protest and the Reinvention of American Radicalism, which is 40% off through Friday, March 24 at midnight UTC.

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  • Representation Against Democracy: Jacques Rancière on the French Presidential Elections

    For the philosopher Jacques Rancière, France’s strange presidential election campaign is no surprise. He thinks that a French system that entrusts all power to professional politicians mechanically churns out candidates who claim to represent a "clean break." Éric Aeschimann spoke to Rancière for the 9–15 March 2017 edition of L’Obs. Translated by David Broder.

    Emmanuel Macron at a March 2017 press conference. 

    From François Hollande’s decision not to stand, to François Fillon’s legal woes, the current presidential campaign has been a succession of dramatic twists. And you, Jacques Rancière, are a unique observer of this spectacle. For years you have denounced the impasses of representative democracy, which you see as incapable of producing a genuine democracy. How would you analyse what is happening?

    "Representative democracy" is a more than ambiguous term. It conveys the false idea of an already-constituted people that expresses itself by choosing its representatives. Yet the people is not a given that pre-exists the political process: rather, it is the result of this process. This or that political system creates this or that people, rather than the other way around. Besides, the representative system is founded on the idea that there is a class in society that represents the general interests of society. In the minds of the American founding fathers, that was the class of enlightened landowners. This system creates a people that identifies its legitimate representatives as coming from within this class, periodically reconfirming as much at the ballot box. The representative system gradually became an affair for professionals, who then reproduced themselves. But in so doing this system generated its own reverse, the mythical idea of a people not represented by these professionals and aspiring to provide itself with representatives who really do incarnate it. This is the piece of theatre — of constantly declining quality — that each election now reproduces.

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