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European Autonomous Movements and the Decolonization
of Everyday Life
Humanity books/Prometheus books
"Left out of European history are popular
direct action movements composed of thousands of activists who refuse
to be confined to the ranks of mainstream politics or marginalised
as guerrillas....their militant resistance to the arms race ,patriarchy
and housing shortage were to transform society as a whole..."
Excellent history and analysis of the Autonomist
movements in Europe from the late 1960s up to the end of last century.
Clearly written by someone who spent a lot of time
and energy in the main hubs of this movement, principally the massive
West German squatting scene. The book flows easily from describing
pitched battles between cops and squatters (often lasting days)
to the philosophy behind the groups involved.
The author picks apart the internal struggles in
the movement, between the "realos' and the "fundi's"
- those who were prepared to dialogue with the State and those who
weren't .These divisions eventually morphed into the hugely
successful German Green Party on one hand and the hardcore
anarchists on the other.
Another interesting point, though not expanded
upon in the book, is the different paths chosen by divided Germany's
youth at the time of the fall of the Berlin wall. The West's Youth
veered Left, embracing liberalism and equality. Poorer cousins in
East Germany, meanwhile, slided to the far Right, with an upsurge
in neo-nazi activity.
Subversion is a meaty, exciting read of
an intense continent at an intense time.