In what Partha Chatterjee calls 'most of the world' the state and capital have two defences against grassroots political society - the police and civil society (especially NGOs and the academy). The first protect oppression with violent repression, the second do the same by throwing up a spongy wall around it in which grassroots political society is absorbed via individualising technocratic 'public participation' processes and educated to accept domination via all kinds of workshops and training that teach people to know their place. This article is an important attempt to think with grassroots militancy against civil society.
After the conviction and sentencing of two ANC councillors for the murder of an Abahlali baseMjondolo activist in May 2016 there was a marked decline in the repression faced by Abahlali baseMjondolo. But the recent shooting of an activist in the Bhambayi land occupation seems to mark a return to repression.
Across the Global South, new methods of combating industrial capitalism are evolving in ambitious, militant and creative ways. Southern Insurgency examines these organizations in three key countries: China, India and South Africa. In each case he considers the broader historical forces at play: imperialism, the trade union movement, the class struggle and the effects of the reserve army of labor. For each case study, he narrows his focus to reveal the specifics of each grassroots insurgency: the militancy of the miners in South Africa, the new labor organizations in India and export promotion and the rise of worker insurgency in China.
The practice of concentrating civilians in guarded camps or centres, specifically as part of a counter-guerrilla military strategy during wartime, long pre-dated and outlasted the Second World War. In the light of fresh research this article looks comparatively at the function of the camps in four different colonial arenas between 1868 and 1908.