Poor Man’s Heaven: The Land of Cokaygne and Other Utopian Visions

“We’ll eat all we please from ham and egg trees that grow by a lake full of beer? The landlord well take and tie to a stake and we won?t have to work like a slave..." In the face of a life defined by exploitation and suffering, the poor of the Middle Ages dreamed up a fantastical land where their sufferings were reversed; where people lived in idleness and plenty and the rich were barred. "Those who sleep the longest earn the most here." This myth of a free earthly paradise emerged in a popular […]

Bold Defiance

Downlaod this article as a PDF file. The Spitalfields Silk Weavers: London’s Luddites? Pretty much everyone has heard of the Luddites, although many people still have a misconception about the reasons why they destroyed machinery. The weavers of Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire, Lancashire and Leicestershire smashed machine looms not because they were blindly opposed to progress, or afraid of new technology, but because the introduction of machinery was undermining the livelihoods of themselves and […]

Why History Matters & Radical History Matters More – Part 2

Bluestockings, 172 Allen Street New York, New York 10002 A series of lectures, presentations and discussion presented by Bristol Radical History Group (BRHG) emphasising the importance and relevance of radical history. Using a diverse series of historical case studies the speakers will demonstrate the various interventions BRHG have made into their local and national histories including: uncovering hidden histories challenging established narratives questioning previous generations of 'radical […]

Bristol Anarchist Bookfair

As well as having our book stall at the 2009 Bristol Anarchist Book Fair some members of the BRHG mob gave a series of talks in conjunction with Bristol Indymedia. From Peterloo to Captain Swing: Victims or Insurgents? - Roger A BRHG talk on the hidden history of struggle in the 19th century. It focuses on how and why major struggles have been ignored or distorted by the left as well as the right. See the slides from this talk (1.25 MB pdf file) A Brief History of Corporations - Dan Bennett A […]

Kings, Commoners & Corporations

The Crown And The Commons: Holding Monarchy To Account In 18th Century England - Steve Poole Eighteenth century English men and women understood their allegiance to the Crown in contractual terms. Their allegiance to the King, in other words, was conditional upon the King looking after the interests of the Commons and defending Constitutional liberty. In theory then, their allegiance was dissolved if the King failed to perform. And in these circumstances, radical constitutionalists might make it […]

Time, Tide & Money

Clipped Coins: John Locke's Philosophy Of Money Join George Caffentzis as he takes a sledgehammer to Locke’s economic theory, his philosophy and his reputation. Starting from the political crisis that arose from the ‘clipping’ of silver currency by 17th century monetary pirates, moving through Locke’s support for slavery and his active role in providing the philosophy that underpinned the rise of capitalism, Caffentzis’ critique provides useful ammunition in the ongoing war of ideas with […]

Witches 3: The Body & Labour Power

Workshop: The Body, Capitalist Accumulation And The Accumulation Of Labour Power - Silvia Federici Long time feminist activist and teacher, Silvia is co-founder of the Committee for Academic Freedom in Africa and the RPA (Radical Philosophy Association) Anti-Death Penalty Project. She teaches International Studies and Political Philosophy at Hofstra University. Federici's published work includes: Enduring Western Civilization: The Construction of the Concept of Western Civilization and its […]

Witches 2: Witch Hunting & Capitalism

Witch Hunting And Capitalist Development, Past And Present - Silvia Federici Long time feminist activist and teacher, Silvia is co-founder of the Committee for Academic Freedom in Africa and the RPA (Radical Philosophy Association) Anti-Death Penalty Project. She teaches International Studies and Political Philosophy at Hofstra University. Federici's published work includes: Enduring Western Civilization: The Construction of the Concept of Western Civilization and its 'Others' (editor) and A […]

Caliban and the Witch

Women the Body and Primitive Accumulation

By Silvia Federici
Caliban and the Witch: Women the Body and Primitive Accumulation
Caliban And The Witch is a history of the body in the transition to capitalism. Moving from the peasant revolts of the late Middle Ages to the witch-hunts and the rise of mechanical philosophy, Federici investigates the capitalist rationalization of social reproduction. She shows how the battle against the rebel body and mind are essential conditions for the development of labour power and self-ownership, two central principles of modern social organization (Autonomedia). The historical […]

Late Victorian Holocausts: El Niño Famines and the Making of The Third World

By Mike Davis
Late Victorian Holocausts: El Niño Famines and the Making of The Third World
This book is an interesting and necessary cross discipline (historical, economic and meteorological) explanation of the horrific famines in China, India and Brazil at the end of the 19th century. Starting from the premise that revisionist and even Marxist historians (Hobsbawm gives them one line in his famous trilogy) have ignored these massive events or failed to link them across these disciplines, he goes on to explain how the dogmatic free market approach of the British ruling class married […]

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