rethinking revolution: total liberation, alliance politics, and a prolegomena to resistance movements in the 21st century

One of the most notorious posts on this blog was published in 2006 (when I had more time available to pen and share thoughts), and has received more than 40,000 views. The post was quite a scathing critique of Steve Best. For example:

The sweeping generalisations, clear lack of knowledge, awareness and understandings of that which he authoritatively comments on, and the lack of critical reflexive awareness are very surprising.

The harshness of the post was perhaps a little over-enthusiastic, and rooted in my own arrogance as much as some of what I was commenting on. Reflecting how our perspectives and critique become more nuanced over continued engagement (if we continue to engage, and have the options, ability, and time to do so), Steve Best’s chapter Rethinking revolution: total liberation, alliance politics, and a prolegomena to resistance movements in the 21st century, published in Contemporary Anarchist Studies is a clear example. The critiques raised in my notorious post notwithstanding, the reflexive engagement, depth of analysis and very clear illustrations of what is required by those who challenge the exploitation of (all, as in human and nonhuman) animals presented by Best are worthwhile for all animal activists.

My aim here is not to summarise or reproduce Best’s arguments, beyond mentioning that he highlights substance in critiques of those who challenge animal exploitation and those on the ‘left’ who fail to grasp the commonality of the roots of exploitation and oppression. I enjoyed reading the chapter, and the conclusions drawn. I strongly recommend reading Rethinking revolution: total liberation, alliance politics, and a prolegomena to resistance movements in the 21st century.

[There are also some points of contention, and addressing these form the task for another day.]

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