social movements

Pisa: the "Nuova Periferia Polivalente" has opened!

After being left derelict and neglected for 6 years, during which the only intervention by the local authorities has been the building of a wall around the old changing rooms which turned them into a dangerous sewer, Pisa’s sports centre Polisportiva della Fontina has come back to life, and being put to use by hundreds of people of all ages who want a space to hang out and practice sports freely.

The centre has been revamped thanks to the work and donations of hundreds of local volunteers coming from all backgrounds: it’s been a month and a half of hard work, of weeding and clearing up, cutting down plants that had spread to the pavements, cleaning and renovating.

Accusations against housing movements in Rome demolished by Tribunal

In September 2009, hundreds of Carabinieri stormed a school in the Magliana area of Rome and arrested dozens of people who were occupying it. The charges made against them were super harsh: organised crime, extortion, possession of weapons, theft, assaulting police officers, and more.

The arrests took place during a relentless propaganda campaign orchestrated against the occupations by the local media. Several politicians, including Rome’s Mayor Alemanno, released statements in solidarity with the police operation, against those “dangerous criminals” that were hiding behind the occupations. A few people spent months in prison, some lost their jobs as a result of it.

Why we’re not afraid of the pitchforks

Translation of a very interesting piece of analysis by the Italian InfoAut crew on the "Pitchfork Movement" that has managed to block the whole of Sicily for about a week in January 2012.

The 5 day-strike announced by the pitchfork movement is over; but the struggle against the crisis and the blackmail of debt has finally reached the souls of those living on Sicilian lands, and large parts of the movement have announced their will to carry on the protests.

Who owns the land? Peasant struggles in Indonesia

An overview with historical background information of peasant struggles and land struggles in Indonesia.

In December 2008 about 500 cops and hired thugs attacked the Suluk Bongkal, a hamlet in the province of Riau, and drove away its inhabitants. Two military helicopters bombed the hamlet with napalm to burn down the 700 huts. Two children were killed, 200 people were arrested, the other people were able to escape. The Sinar Mas Cooperation had ordered this attack.

Practical anarchists, we’: social revolutionaries in Dublin, 1885–7 - Fintan Lane

Article by Fintan Lane on the pocket of anarchism in Ireland in the 1880s.

When we think of revolutionaries in late nineteenth-century Ireland, we think of Fenians rather than the anarchist agitators who were then making their presence felt on the Continent. Irish revolutionary thought focused on republicanism rather than on class politics—at least until the twentieth century.

Anarchism and syndicalism in an African port city: the revolutionary traditions of Cape Town's multiracial working class, 1904-1931

A paper by Lucien van der Walt examining the development of anarchism and syndicalism in Cape Town, South Africa in the early twentieth century and the then pioneering multiracial and determinedly internationalist stance of those anti-authoritarians involved.

From the history of the anarchist “Black Banner” movement in Białystok

Set the street anarchist Białystok at the beginning of the 20th century

At the turn of the 20th century Białystok, an industrial city with a population of 80,000 in the Polish part of the Russian empire, was the scene of one of the earliest examples of a mass working class movement inspired by anarchist principles. The ideological impetus for the revolutionary movement in Białystok in 1903–1906 was supplied by Chernoye Znamya [Black Banner], an organization which drew on classical anarchist doctrines but also developed its own approach to building a revolutionary working class movement.

In this article, a leading participant of the movement, Iuda Solomovich Grossman-Roshchin, reminisces about Białystok Black Banner and the place it occupies in the history of proletarian revolution. By 1924, when this article was published, Grossman-Roshchin had renounced many of his earlier views but his nostalgia for the period of the 1905 Russian Revolution is apparent.

No gods, no masters: An anthology of anarchism - Daniel Guerin

Guerin's classic anthology of anarchism translated and reprinted, available for the first time in a single volume. It brings together a vast array of unpublished documents, letters, debates, manifestos reports, impassioned calls-to-arms and reasoned analysis; the history, organisation and practice of the movement - its theorists, advocates and activists; the great names and the obscure, towering legends and unsung heroes. This definitive collection portrays anarchism as a sophisticated ideology whose nuances and complexities highlight the natural desire for freedom in us all.

States of emergency: Cultures of revolt in Italy from 1968 to 1978 - Robert Lumley

Students demonstrate in Milan, 1968

The complete text of the definitive book on the mass social movements in Italy in the 1960s and 70s in which author Robert Lumley traces their development, growth then recuperation and decline. Highly recommended.

OCRed for libcom.org by Linda Towlson.

epub & mobi versions produced by Luxury Communism.

‘‘A laughter that will bury you all’’: Irony as protest and language as struggle in the Italian 1977 movement

A paper by Patrick Cuninghame reassessing the Italian "1977 movement" and its use of irony to ridicule the institutional old and vanguardist new lefts, particularly by the ‘‘Metropolitan Indians’’, the transversalists and other ‘‘creatives’’.

Perhaps the most innovative aspect of the Italian ‘‘1977 Movement’’ in its conflict with the grey, humourless political system was its use of irony to ridicule its opponents. [1] Irony was central to the identity of the movement and its cultural and political break with the institutional old and vanguardist new lefts.