social movements

Slovakia's unemployed riots of 2004

In February and March 2004, the Roma unemployed in Slovakia responded to cuts in welfare provisions with demonstrations and looting. The state's response involved the greatest mobilization of police forces since the fall of Stalinism. Although the unrest was crushed, it managed to secure better conditions for all unemployed in Slovakia.

The rule of law and the working class: anti-corruption protests in Romania

Anarchist communist interpretation of recent protests in Romania

In the following text we are going to try and express an anarchist communist assessment, in as much a coherent manner as it is possible at the present time, of the recent protests against some of the decisions made by the governing party and the manner in which these were perceived as an atack on the “rule of law”, the post-state capitalist trajectory of Romania, and on the “progress” made in the last 27 years.

Abahlali’s Vocal Politics of Proximity: Speaking, Suffering and Political Subjectivization

Abahlali baseMjondolo protest in downtown Durban

First published in 2012 this paper, written after sustained immersion in Abahlali baseMjondolo, examines the significance of what the author terms 'speaking suffering' in the movement's politics.

Dis/placing political illiteracy: the politics of intellectual equality in a South African shack-dwellers’ movement

Abahlali baseMjondolo.

The production and abandonment of surplus people also depends on rendering them as improper political subjects. In the prevailing political discourse, poor people’s struggles are deemed less than political through notions such as the idea that all protest is related to the pace of “service delivery” or accusations of violence, as well as often explicit characterizations of dissenting people as ignorant. Such discursive moves imply and reinforce a conception of the poor black majority as unable to think and practice their own politics; that is, as politically illiterate group of people.

The Luddites: machine-breaking in regency England

Cartoon depicting the fictional Luddite leader Ned Ludd

A historical overview and analysis of the Luddite movement 1811-1816 which swept parts of the UK as workers smashed machines to defend their jobs, pay and conditions.

A new world in our hearts: the faces of Spanish anarchism

CNT members in Valencia, 1978

Book published in 1978 by Cienfuegos Press, edited by Albert Meltzer, giving an overview of the anarchist movement in Spain following the death of dictator General Franco.

Who were the Luddites?

Illustration of a Luddite

A brief overview of the Luddite movement: militant textile workers in the UK who fought against job losses and deskilling brought about by the industrialisation of the industry.

Paternalism and rural protest: the Rebecca riots - Lowri Ann Rees

Contemporary illustration of the Rebecca rioters

A detailed analysis and account of the Rebecca riots in south-west Wales, 1839-1843, examining the interests of different classes at the time.

The Rebecca riots, 1839-43 - Jon Bauckham

Contemporary cartoon of the Rebecca riots

A short account of the successful protest movement in Wales against excessive road tolls, when locals would wear dresses and blacken their faces in disguise and destroy toll gates.