Italy 1960s-70s: a reading guide.

Surrey and Hampshire Anarchist Federation

Check Libcom.org’s excellent reading guide on the Italian social movements of the 1960s-70s, which saw massive strikes, protests, occupations, directly democratic assemblies and widespread radicalism across society.

Key texts

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Why I Never Write About the Fucking Tories

architectsforsocialhousing

Illustration by Clifford Harper
In a nation of 65.5 million people the membership of the Conservative Party is a tiny 134,000, a fraction of the well over half a million current members of the Labour Party. Yet the Conservative Party is one of the most successful political parties in Western democracies. Conservative Prime Ministers led UK governments for 57 years of the 20th Century and for 7 of the 21st. It currently has 8,857 councillors in local government – a extraordinary 1 for every 15 party members – out of a total of 20,830 seats; and, despite implementing the most draconian cuts to government expenditure in living memory while simultaneously presiding over the highest wealth inequality in Europe, has just been voted to the government of the UK for the third time in seven years. So how do they do it?

The obvious answer is that its members – which account for only…

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Ditching the Fear – angry workers film and discussion, in Plymouth, Saturday 19th August.

Our friends from Angry Workers of the World present ‘Ditching the Fear’: this is a film we intended to show at the bookfair but had to delete owing to lack of space.

Ditching the Fear tells the story of warehouse workers in Italy who recently went on strike, and overcame all obstacles to win. The film screening will be followed by a discussion led by Angry Workers, who went to Italy to speak with some of the people involved. facebook

Starting 4pm at the Fortescue on Mutley Plain, Plymouth, on Saturday 19th August. Hosted by Marea Granate Plymouth

You can read more about the strikes on the Angry Workers website

The Personal is Political by Carol Hanisch (1969)

Feminist Reading Group

This classic essay is available on Carol Hanisch’s website here.

In her 2006 follow-up, Hanisch mentions one of feminism’s biggest challenges.

I wish we could have anticipated all the ways that “The Personal Is Political” and “The Pro-Woman Line” would be revised and misused. Like most of the theory created by the Pro-Woman Line radical feminists, these ideas have been revised or ripped off or even stood on their head and used against their original, radical intent. While it’s necessary that theories take their knocks in the real world, like everything else, many of us have learned that once they leave our hands, they need to be defended against revisionism and misuse.

OUCH. That’s real, sisters. Even as we attempt to move forward, we must vigilantly watch our backs (see: legal erosion of abortion access) and ensure that our theories are not co-opted for anti-feminist purposes (see: trans politics).

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My review of “Why We March: Signs of Protest and Hope”.

lipstick socialist

why we MARCH

On 21 January 2017 several hundred women (and  some men) gathered in Albert Square in Manchester in support of women’s rights,  and in solidarity with similar events taking place in Washington DC on Trump’s first full day as President. The organisers stressed that it was not a march,  but a peaceful, non-partisan protest with music and placards.  It was noticeable that many of the women taking place were middle-class, fairly typical of a class of people that live in the centre of Manchester these days or the affluent south of the city.

womens march manchesterWhy We March is a pictorial history of the Women’s March on  21 January  2017,  which took place worldwide: inspiring people from Antartica  to Zimbabwe.

The book includes 500 photographs, mainly from cities in the USA,  which demonstrate how  millions of women, men and children raised their voices and placards  on issues such reproductive rights, migrant rights, police…

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Anti fracking camp at Leith Hill, Surrey, call out for support.

Wessex Solidarity

Europa Oil & Gas are nearing the end of the legal process giving them permission to carry out unconventional drilling in the Surrey Hills, despite massive community opposition. A phase of direct action is likely to begin once the site traffic starts to arrive in October. If you’d like to find out more, see the Leith Hill Protection Camp Facebook page or come and visit the Leith Hill Protection Camp which is in Coldharbour Lane near Dorking, opposite the intended drill site. If you’d like to join the camp, please visit first to meet the core crew.

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The Diggers and the Levellers

Surrey and Hampshire Anarchist Federation

An article written by a blogger called Steven on LibCom about the history of the Diggers also known as the “True Levellers” and the Levellers themselves.

A history of the radical movements the Diggers and the Levellers which sprung up around the English Civil War. The political and social upheaval that resulted from the English Civil War in the seventeenth century [effectively two conflicts between 1642 -1646 and 1647/48] led to the development of a set of radical ideas centred around movements known as ‘Diggers’ and ‘Levellers’

The Diggers [or ‘True Levellers’] were led by William Everard who had served in the New Model Army. As the name implies, the diggers aimed to use the earth to reclaim the freedom that they felt had been lost partly through the Norman Conquest; by seizing the land and owning it ‘in common’ they would challenge what they considered to be the slavery of property…

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Advance notice – March of the towers!

The South Essex STIRRER

We’ll be going along to this to show our solidarity with housing struggles in East London: March of the towers!https://www.facebook.com/events/1951128301839783/

Date: Saturday August 12th

Join us for a march and speak out to demand safe homes, not social cleansing in East London.

The flats of Ferrier Point and Tanner Point are both tower blocks with the same cladding as Grenfell Tower. Carpenters Estate in Stratford is marked for demolition by Newham Labour council.

Let us meet to raise the issues of secure housing in our local community and demand that the council provides suitable housing for residents.

Meet 12 midday: Ferrier Point, Forty Acre Lane, Canning Town E16 and/or 1pm: Tanner Point, Pelly Road, Plaistow E13.

From there we will be marching to the Carpenters Estate, Stratford E15.

And from 2.30pm we will be having a ‘hands around the Carpenters Estate’ solidarity event and speak out with residents to…

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