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Politics at a Distance from the State

Radical and African Perspectives

Kirk Helliker (Rhodes University, South Africa) Lucien van der Walt (Rhodes University, South Africa)



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CRC Press Inc
08 June 2018
Regional studies; Comparative politics; Anarchism; Political economy
For decades, most anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist movements identified radical transformation with capturing state power. The collapse of these statist projects from the 1970s led to a global crisis of left and working class politics. But crisis has also opened space for rediscovering alternative society-centred, anti-capitalist modes of bottom-up change, operating at a distance from the state. These have registered important successes in practice, such as the Zapatistas in Mexico, and Rojava in Syria. They have been a key influence on movements from Occupy in United States, to the landless in Latin America, to anti-austerity struggles in Europe and Asia, to urban movements in Africa. Their lineages include anarchism, syndicalism, autonomist Marxism, philosophers like Alain Badiou, and radical popular praxis. This path-breaking volume recovers this understanding of social transformation, long side-lined but now resurgent, like a seed in the soil that keeps breaking through and growing. It provides case studies with reference to South Africa and Zimbabwe, and includes a dossier of key texts from a century of anarchists, syndicalists, insurgent unionists and anti-apartheid activists in South Africa. Originating in an African summit of radical academics, struggle veterans and social movements, the book includes a preface from John Holloway.

The chapters in this book were originally published as a special issue in the Journal of Contemporary African Studies, with the addition of a new dossier on the history and voices of a century of politics at a distance from the state in South Africa.
Edited by:   Kirk Helliker (Rhodes University South Africa), Lucien van der Walt (Rhodes University, South Africa)
Imprint:   CRC Press Inc
Country of Publication:   United States
Dimensions:   Height: 246mm,  Width: 174mm, 
Weight:   454g
ISBN:   9780815346920
ISBN 10:   0815346921
Pages:   172
Publication Date:   08 June 2018
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Further / Higher Education ,  A / AS level
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Kirk Helliker is an associate professor in the Department of Sociology at Rhodes University in South Africa, as well as the Director of the Unit of Zimbabwean Studies within the department. His main research interests are land reform, civil society and political transformation with particular reference to Zimbabwe. Lucien van der Walt is professor of Industrial and Economic Sociology at Rhodes University, South Africa. A prize-winning scholar, he is involved in labour education and has published and spoken widely. His main areas of research are anarchism and syndicalism, labour and left studies and history, and the political economy of neo-liberalism.

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