An Exchange Between Brian Morris and John Clark

Readers of the Autumn 2018 issue of Anarchist Studies (26:2) will have noted the vigorous debate between Brian Morris and John Clark, two prominent figures in anarchist academia. The exchange began with a review by Morris of Clark’s The Impossible Community: Realizing Communitarian Anarchism (2013), and continued with a reply from Clark to Morris’s review. Since publication, this debate has continued with a further reply from each individual, and they are published here (along with the original review and response).

An Exchange Between Brian Morris and John Clark

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No profit, no hierarchy: A comparative study of the ‘lower left’

Edurne Scott Loinaz, co-founder of the HAHA Academy, introduces a comparative study of 66 ‘lower left’ organisations – that is, groups that are autonomous from the state, use horizontal organisation for planning and decision making, are not for profit, and anti-capitalist. She points to the importance of thinking and communicating in terms of a dimensional ‘zone of solidarity’, rather than the damaging reliance on binary language.

No profit, no hierarchy: A comparative study of the ‘lower left’

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A series of articles in response to Daniel Colson’s A Little Philosophical Lexicon of Anarchism from Proudhon to Deleuze

To celebrate the publication of the English language translation of Daniel Colson’s A Little Philosophical Lexicon of Anarchism from Proudhon to Deleuze, we are bringing you a series of articles that respond to this ‘provocative exploration of hidden affinities and genealogies in anarchist thought’.

 

The first is by Teresa Xavier Fernandes, who, in response to Colson’s identification of anarchism as a ‘radical critique of representation’, unpacks Nietzsche’s conception of representation as a ‘lie’. In her Nietzschean typology of ‘liars’ Fernandes identifies the anarchist as a ‘faker’ who reminds us that representation is a trap.

The Concept of Representation: Is This a Trap?

 

The second in the series is by Iwona Janicka, who picks up on Colson’s reference to Gabriel Tarde to discuss the role of imitation in shaping behaviour. She points to the inherently mimetic aspects of anarchism, as exemplified in anarchist housing co-operatives and other intentional communities.

Gabriel Tarde and the Anarchist Contagion

 

In the third article, Nathan Jun discusses Colson’s consideration of the term ‘anarchism’ itself. Colson argues that the contemporary drive to taxonomically classify ‘anarchism’ negates the ‘infinity of manners’ which the anarchist project ought to encompass. Jun, however, points to the potential for meaninglessness in leaving the term completely open.

A Few Thoughts on Colson’s Lexicon

 

In the final instalment, Roger Farr offers ‘affinity’ as a path to follow between the Lexicon’s terms, and ruminates on Colson’s own use of the term ‘affinity’ as a potential first step.

The Affinity for Affinity, Or How to Read the Petite Lexicon

 

[A Little Philosophical Lexicon of Anarchism from Proudhon to Deleuze is translated by Jesse Cohn, and published by Minor Compositions (on release to the book trade in April 2019). PDF available freely online: http://www.minorcompositions.info/?p=902]

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Using an Anarchist Approach in Geopolitics

Political geographer Fabrizio Eva highlights the gap between the principles of inter-state relations (as espoused by the United Nations and the so-called ‘International Community’) and their actual practice, suggesting that the critical stance of anarchist geographies provides a good perspective to better understand ‘International Relations’. The article traces the links between ‘classical’ and contemporary anarchist geographies, before offering an analytical procedure informed by an anarchic critical approach to Geopolitics.

Using an Anarchist Approach in Geopolitics

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Anarchist Academics and Peer Review

Anarchists in the academy are forced to work within (or around) numerous structures and processes that are antithetical to their principles and ideals. However, not all these institutional trappings are equally problematic, and Judith Suissa argues here that peer review is one aspect which can function in keeping with the main principles of anarchism (even as this process is increasingly distorted by marketised ideologies).

Anarchist Academics and Peer Review

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The Sparrows’ Nest Anarchist Library and Archive

The Sparrows’ Nest has been documenting and sharing the history of anarchist movements for ten years. Jim Donaghey paid the Sparrows a visit at their library and archive in Nottingham, UK, to talk about their work and the importance of making anarchist history available to all. The article contains an audio stream of the interview (11m 38s), a full transcript, a series of images of the Nest, and information on their archived collections.

The Sparrows’ Nest Library and Archive (interview)

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