Welcome to the 400th issue of the Fifth Estate. Our first issue was published in Detroit in November 1965. It was born in the age of the 1960s New Left, civil rights, anti-war, feminist, and gay rights movements.
The Fifth Estate was soon joined by hundreds of other papers and small magazines locally produced by activists, many barely out of their teens. Together these publications became known as the underground press.
By 1970, a full-time Fifth Estate staff was putting out a weekly tabloid newspaper. Most of the other publications disappeared by 1975.
However, the Fifth Estate continued on, catching a fresh burst of energy from ultra-left, anarchist, Situationist, and radical environmental ideas. Just as the staff in 1965 felt it was part of something that substantively challenged the ruling ideas and political forces, so too did those who took over the paper’s operation in 1975.
That history has been told many times in these pages and emphasized during the 50th anniversary celebration that took place in Detroit in 2015. It is available for reading on our website at FifthEstate.org (see the Archive for issues 368/369 and 395).
This is not meant as self-congratulations since all of the staff with its hundreds of participants never saw themselves as separate from the movements discussed in the FE, and don’t today.
Now appearing three times a year, the Fifth Estate is one of the many publications that seek to inspire ongoing efforts for a society with both liberty and social cooperation, in which class strife and exploitation are eliminated and people live in harmony with each other and the earth. As readers, subscribers, and supporters, you are a part of that.
Thanks to everyone who has made these 400 issues possible through writing nonfiction, fiction, poetry and letters, as well as contributing photos and art, editing, layout, and subscribing and donating funds to keep the FE coming out.