ISBN: 978-1-509-50493-0 January 2016 Polity 180 Pages
What shape can radical politics take today in a time abandoned by the great revolutionary projects of the past? In light of recent uprisings around the world against the neoliberal capitalist order, Saul Newman argues that anarchism - or as he calls it postanarchism - forms our contemporary political horizon.
In this book, Newman develops an original political theory of postanarchism; a form of anti-authoritarian politics which starts, rather than finishes, with anarchy. He does this by asking four central questions: who are we as subjects; how do we resist; what is our relationship to violence; and, why do we obey? By drawing on a range of heterodox thinkers including La Boétie, Sorel, Benjamin, Stirner and Foucault, the author not only investigates the current conditions for radical political thought and action, but proposes a new form of politics based on what he calls ontological anarchy and the desire for autonomous life. Rather than seeking revolutionary emancipation or political hegemony, we should affirm instead the non-existence of power and the ever-present possibilities of freedom.
As the tectonic plates of our time are shifting, revealing the nihilism and emptiness of our political and economic order, postanarchisms disdain for power in all its forms offers us genuine emancipatory potential.
Table of contents
- 1 From Anarchism to Postanarchism
- 2 Singularities
- 3 Insurrection
- 4 Violence against Violence
- 5 Voluntary Inservitude
- 6 Thinking from the Outside
"For those on the left who despair about the ongoing power of neoliberalism, Saul Newman offers a powerful insight. Whereas older models of resistance are based on revolution and opposition to the state, Newman notes that the state is no longer the key problem of our time. Postanarchism is his response; it is based on autonomy, insurrection and the recuperation of politics. This book is critical for those who wish to think and act beyond our contemporary condition."
James Martel, San Francisco State University