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Joined 4 months ago

A bloke excited to read more, hoping this will inspire better note taking and engagement with the texts. I apparently start most posts with something akin to "This book..."

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Bursts__'s books

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reviewed It Did Happen Here by Moe Bowstern

It Did Happen Here (Paperback, 2023, PM Press) 5 stars

Portland, Oregon, 1988: the brutal murder of Ethiopian immigrant Mulugeta Seraw by racist skinheads shocked …

"Together Against"

5 stars

I got this book a bit early for preparing an interview for the radio show, but since it hasn't been released (brag brag) I won't include any spoilers. Basically, if you haven't heard the KBOO podcast hosted by Erin Yanke, Mic Crenshaw & Celina Flores, do it! If you've heard the podcast, check out the book and you'll find even more interviews (in addition to many from the book) with antiracist activists from Portland from the mid 80's to late 90's. Plus a ton of photos, posters and flyers, news clippings and more. There is so much here and I've no doubt it's just scratching the surface. This is a great read for anyone interested in radical or regional history, doing anti-racist activism, who is interested in multi-generational and coalitional organizing, or into subcultural punk and skinhead resistance.

Starting earlier, though really sparked by the murder by beating of Ethiopian …

Azadi (2020, Penguin Books, Limited) No rating

The title caught my eye on the shelf at the bookstore, as the word means "Freedom" in many languages including Kurmanji and other Persian-adjacent languages. I think Roy pulls it from Urdu, if I recall. The first essay, a key note from a book award in 2018 talking about nationalism, linguistic boundaries, identity, communication, colonialism, Hindutva, her political development and characters from her 2 novels, is brilliantly written and quite evocative. I'm excited to learn more. I've found myself touching on issues around the far right in India & the diaspora more and more in my reading recently, and this book fits into that study nicely.

The Nation on No Map (Paperback, 2021, AK Press) 5 stars

A call for a radical transformation in the face of widespread crisis.

The Nation on …

This was such a good book: straight forward language, covered a range of topics, flowed from subject to subject. I'm quite glad that I read this one and would suggest it to anyone. Williams' coverage of ideas from Hartman's (I believe) coverage of neglect, the discussion of lessons learned from Lorenzo Kom'boa Ervin, ideas from Cedric Robinson, CLR James and Modibo Kadalie and so much more really draws out a rich tapestry. A must-read for any anarchist in my opinion.

Decolonizing Anarchism (Paperback, 2011, AK Press) No rating

Decolonizing Anarchism examines the history of South Asian struggles against colonialism and neocolonialism, highlighting lesser-known …

I just read a really good essay by Maia Ramnath entitled "The Other Aryan Supremacy: Fighting Hindu Fascism in the South Asian Diaspora" in preparation for speaking to the author about Hindutva for an upcoming podcast episode.

A whole book on the subject of anti-authoritarianism in the struggle to throw off British imperialism in the sub-continent sounds like something I could learn a lot from.

Black Anarchism and the Black Radical Tradition (Paperback, Daraja Press) No rating

Thi swork shows how Black anarchism has emerged from roots in Pan-Africanism, the Black radical …

I really enjoyed this short publication. The book talks about the limitations of European and North American (read white) radical political philosophies to the lived and organizing experiences of many in the African diaspora in the so-called USA, grounded in Cedric Robinson's "Black Marxism: The Making of the Black Radical Tradition". The booklet talks about waves of development in the Black anarchist tradition and touches briefly on influential examples, it's relationship and antagonism to "Classical" and US-born Individualist anarchism up through today, and some visions of Black autonomy to come. I got a lot from this short publication and would suggest it to others.

The Conquest of Bread (2006) 5 stars

The Conquest of Bread (French: La Conquête du Pain; Russian: Хлѣбъ и воля, tr. Khleb …

This book has been on my list for a long time, so I'm excited to be participating in a small reading group about it. People have been gifting me Kropotkin books for a few years now which have sat side by side on a shelf at home, untouched. My first anarchist reading (that I can recall) was a zine of "The Place of Anarchism in Socailistic Evolution" by Kropotkin that I picked up as a teenager from Bound Together books on Haight St. in San Francisco. I LIKED the idea of anarchism but it's taken a long time for me to sit down and delve in the ideas of others, so I likely skimmed it and lent it to someone without expectation it would come back. With my recent efforts to dig a little deeper into ideas (I'm missing the years-gone book club friends had here that lasted about 10 …

Blood and Belief (2009) 4 stars

So much can change in a few years

4 stars

This book was very informative. As I said in an earlier post, it starts off defining it's purpose as being for a better understanding from the position of US Foreign Policy development and it is quite unsympathetic to Ocalan and the PKK. The book ends without critical engagement in the US "War On Terror" rolling through Iraq at this time, which is gross. Taken with the prior note as a grain of salt, I think the book is a worthwhile read, sources it's interviews mostly from public statements, articles, memoirs and direct interviews with former PKK members and Turkish leftists. Again, the fact that it's not sourced from Turkish government or other state sources is a point in it's favor. In this book you get a critical overview of the development of Kurdish resistance, with a focus on the PKK, against the modern Turkish state up to about 2006: the …