Fifth Estate Books

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Fifth Estate # 353, Summer, 1999

Fifth Estate Books is located at 4632 Second Avenue, just south of W. Forest, in Detroit, in the same space as the Fifth Estate Newspaper. Hours vary, so please call before coming by.

HOW TO ORDER BY MAIL

1) List the title of the book, quantity, and the price of each;

2) add 10% for mailing costs—not less than $1.13 U.S. or $1.60 foreign (minimum for 4th class book rate postage);

3) total;

4) write check or money order to: Fifth Estate;

5) mail to: Fifth Estate, 4632 Second Ave., Detroit MI 48201 USA.

Phone 313/831-6800 for hours and more information.

PASSIONATE AND DANGEROUS: Conversations with Midwestern Anti-Authoritarians and Anarchists

An intrepid group of folks from St. Louis energized by Mark Bohnert trekked around the region getting diverse interviews that affirm the first word of the title. It includes Hillary Esme from Detroit’s Trumbullplex talking about the ups and downs of communal life, and the FE’s Peter Werbe and David Watson doing a little philosophizing.

Also interviews with folks from Chicago’s highly organized and active A-Zone, and with others doing art and revolution, “pleasure activism,” micro-radio projects, IWW, environmental and community organizing, and numerous other activities. There are others which reach into the personal and speak to how one exists in a capitalist world while organizing against it. Terrific art from Tony Doyle and Josh MacPhee.

Self-Published 70 pp., $4

Against Civilization: Readings and Reflections by John Zerzan

Reforms be damned. They only extend the misery created by civilization’s institutions, this volume argues, be they the state, the division of labor, or representation of any type. Contrary to Hobbes, life is nasty, brutish and short since we left primitive life, not during it. Zerzan has collected 51 essays from a range of authors and scholars to at least give one pause in accepting the world as we know it as a starting point. FE staff members, David Watson and Lynne Clive appear with Adorno, Rousseau, Sahlins, Turner, and the Unabomber and others. See review this issue on page 25.

Uncivilized Books 214 pp., $10

CULTURAL BATTLES: The Meaning of the Vietnam-USA War by Peter McGregor

Cultural Battles furnishes valuable reports on the aftermath of the Vietnam-USA war. Films, histories, even poems by a regretful former U.S. soldier are examined and analyzed. Several chapters report on activities of veterans groups. The text is accompanied by excellent photos of contemporary life in Vietnam as well as Australian protest activities.

Scam Publications 214 pp., $6

HOMAGE TO CATALONIA by George Orwell

In this now famous account of his experiences during the Spanish Revolution and Civil War, Orwell describes the bleak and comic aspects of trench warfare on the Aragon front, the Barcelona uprising in May 1937, his nearly fatal wounding just two weeks later, and his escape from Barcelona into France after the POUM was suppressed.

Harcourt/Brace 232 pp., $10

ALL-AMERICAN ANARCHIST: Joseph Labadie and the Labor Movement by Carlotta Anderson

In this account Of the man dubbed “The Gentle Anarchist,” his granddaughter brings to life not only the man complete with foibles and misjudgments, but also the era. Labor radicals and anarchists of the last third of the 1800s are often ignored for those of the 1930s. Anderson sketches resistance to capital in the earlier era and those who filled the ranks of rebellion. See review this issue on page 19.

Wayne State Univ. Press 328 pp., hardback $35

ESCAPE FROM THE 19TH CENTURY by Peter Lamborn Wilson

If to know “History” as tragedy is to escape its—repetition as farce, then perhaps we need to look more deeply at this Past that won’t stop haunting us. Fourier, Nietzsche, Marx and Proudhon are enlisted in the break-out plan. “Wilson really does turn the world upside down.”—Christopher Hill

Autonomedia 205 pp., $12

ANARCHIST PORTRAITS by Paul Avrich

A stirring biography of many known (and unknown) anarchists in Europe, U.S., Russia, Brazil and beyond. A landmark book by American anarchism’s most prominent historian, tearing through time and space with incisive vision. Includes Bakunin, but also profiles the likes of J.W. Fleming. A must for those who want a sense of anarchist history.

Princeton Paperbacks 316 pp., $19

ALL THINGS CENSORED Radio Commentaries by Mumia Abu-Jamal

CD with text originally produced in 1994 for All Things Considered, but the liberals at NPR crumbled under pressure from the cops and politicians and these powerful messages from Death Row were never aired. When you hear the messages in these three-minute epistolaries on American justice and culture, you’ll know why the forces of authority are so anxious to kill him. Comments by Alice Walker, Martin Sheen, William Kunstler, Ramona Africa, Judi Bari, Howard Zinn and others.

Prison Radio/Quixote CD $10

AGAINST THE MEGAMACHINE: ESSAYS ON EMPIRE & ITS ENEMIES by David Watson

The essays in this collection by FE collaborator David Watson date from 1981 to 1996, have been substantially revised, and some have never appeared in the FE. Most of the key themes covered in this paper—mass technics, the ecological crisis, the critique of civilization, reason and spirit, war and empire—are represented, including “Stopping the Industrial Hydra,” “Civilization in Bulk,” “Looking Back on the Vietnam War,” “Homage to Fredy Perlman,” a completely revised “Against the Megamachine,” and many more.

Autonomedia 334 pp., $14

LESSONS OF THE SPANISH REVOLUTION by Vernon Richards

Richards’ book is an important contribution to the already sizeable literature on the Anarchist role in the Spanish Revolution. His analysis of the emergence of “influential militants,” the failure to capitalize on important opportunities to carry the revolution forward, the alliance between the CNT and UGT, the collaboration with the government, etc., provides valuable insights as to how and why the anarchists were defeated.

Freedom Press 256 pp., $8

GONE TO CROATAN: ORIGINS OF NORTH AMERICAN DROP-OUT CULTURE edited by Ron Sakolsky & James Koehnline

America was founded as a land of dropouts, and began to produce its crop of dissidents, visionaries, utopians, escaped slaves, white and black “Indians,” sailors and buccaneers, tax rebels, angry women, “tri-racial isolate” communities—all on the lam from Babylon. 25 essays tell a hidden history of this continent.

Autonomedia 382 pp., $12

SOCIETY AGAINST THE STATE by Pierre Clastres

Can there be a society that is not divided into oppressors and oppressed, or that refuses coercive state apparatuses? In this beautifully written book, Clastres offers examples of South American Indians that without hierarchical leadership are both affluent and complex. He refuses the usual negative definition of tribal society and poses its order as a critique of Western society.

Zone Books 218 pp., $14

ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN by Fredy Perlman

This compendium of Fredy Perlman’s shorter writings chart an intellectual exploration from the 1968 student revolutions to the ecological concerns of today. His insights into industrialism, the nation state, racism and genocide, and the psychology of power and dependency, are some of the most important in recent libertarian thought.

Phoenix Press 127 pp., $9

CRAPPED OUT: How Gambling Ruins the Economy and Destroys Lives Edited by Jennifer Vogel

From the title you can guess this isn’t a radical perspective. Hey, “ruins the economy?” Maybe it’s not entirely bad. However, if you live in a town like Detroit where the politicians are selling the idea of bread and circuses to the people as salvation for economic woes, this is a handy volume. It neatly refutes pro-gaming arguments and shows how gambling rips off the poor while enriching corporations.

Common Courage 234 pp., was $16; now $5

FREE WOMEN OF SPAIN: Anarchism and the Struggle for the Emancipation of Women by Martha Ackelsberg

Traces the efforts by Mujeres Libres to create an independent organization of and for working class women that would empower them to take their places in the revolution and in the new society. She argues that the anarchist analysis of domination and subordination and the centrality of community can be important resources for contemporary feminists.

Indiana Univ. Press 256 pp., $15

CHUMBAWAMBA / NOAM CHOMSKY For A Free Humanity: For Anarchy

A double CD featuring the now-famous pop band from Leeds on disc 1. “Showbusiness” was recorded live in 1994 and contains their best pre-“Tubthumping” anarchist material. Previously available only as a limited edition expensive import. Disc 2 is a Chomsky lecture—”Capital Rules”—a portrait of a two-tier society with islands of wealth in a sea of poverty. A 24-page booklet is included featuring interviews with Chomsky and the band.

AK Press Double CD & Booklet $18

NOT FOR PROFIT by Marie Mason

In the tradition of Wobbly and Earth First! troubadours, Marie Mason, longtime Fifth Estate collaborator, sings lyrically, sweetly and powerfully about the fight for a just and natural world. Eight songs include originals such as Using You, Take It Down, The RCP Song, Tienemen Square, and the title cut. EF!er Darryl Cherney shares some of the song writing and guitar picking. Profits from the sale go to benefit local EF! campaigns.

$10

T.A.Z.: TEMPORARY AUTONOMOUS ZONE by Hakim Bey

Published in 1991, this text is still in search of communities that would meaningfully debate as well as indulge its insights and vision. Ontological Anarchism, Poetic Terrorism, and the Temporary Autonomous Zone are the articles of belief for a new community which actualizes its will-to-power as disappearance. With verve and erudition, Bey boldly insinuates that human liberation, beauty and adventure lie beyond the hypocrisies and banalities of our present. A work of relentless imagination and brilliant controversy.

Autonomedia 141 pp., $8

GOD AND The STATE by Michael Bakunin.

Dover 89 pp., $5

For a list of FE back issues, request it with your book order, or send an SASE.

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