Tag Archive: history

Interview With Crimethinc.

tochangeeverythingFrom Mask Magazine – Interview by Hanna Hurr

To Change Everything, Start Anywhere

The radical milieu in the U.S. is vibrant and complex, but few projects last very long. Generations shift rapidly, and so do our projects. CrimethInc. Ex-Workers’ Collective seems to be an exception.

If you’ve ever lived in a punk house, participated in running an infoshop or social center, gone to an anarchist book fair or protest convergence, chances are you’ve seen CrimethInc. posters pinned to the walls, copies of Recipes for Disaster or Days of War, Nights of Love on the bookshelves, or stacks of Fighting for Our Lives pamphlets lying around. Perhaps you read the“Letter from Anarchists” at your local Occupy camp. There are few contemporary anarchist organizations whose work has passed through so many hands and been read by so many people as the CrimethInc. Ex-Workers’ Collective. In its twenty years of activity, CrimethInc. has distributed hundreds of thousands of books, posters, magazines, and stickers to countless people on all continents including Antarctica.

The idea that history is something we make by our actions, not something that merely happens to us, is central to CrimethInc.’s approach. In their familiar, high-fidelity way, they encourage people to take this history into their own hands. Tempting us to grab the steering wheel of our own lives and turn toward something that enables a more livable existence. Though the collective members remain in anonymity – some twenty years later! – the idea somehow persists that CrimethInc. can be anyone. (more…)

Hasan of the Lucasville Prisoner Uprising

lucasville1from AshevilleFM

This week, we spoke with Imam Siddique Abdullah Hasan who is facing the death penalty for his role as a negotiator during the prisoner uprising at the SOCF facility in Lucasville in April of 1993. Hasan, as well as 4 other prisoners, are facing the death penalty for participation as “leaders” in the uprising. 4 of them are charged with the death of a prison guard by the name of Bobby Vallandingham as well as 9 inmates considered to be snitches.

The riot began as negotiations between Sunni prisoners, of which Hasan was one of the leaders, took guards hostage in hopes of bringing state attention to the problems at the prison. In particular among their concerns was the imposition of a TB test that was in contradiction to their religious beliefs and for which an alternative was readily available. Soon, other prisoners began to take space and control. Fearing a bloody outcome like was seen at Attica in New York, representatives of the Sunni community, the Aryan Brotherhood and the Black Gangster Disciplanes at Lucasville began negotiations with the state to bring a peaceful resolution to the uprising. Graffiti displayed within the prison began speaking of “Convict Race” and “Black and White Unity”.

After the end of the uprising, the state, under pressure from Vallandingham’s family, railroaded the five. The call for blood was great, but since the Lucasville Disturbance, so have been the calls for justice in the case of the prisoners punished in relation to the Lucasville Disturbance. (more…)

The Messy Link Between Slave Owners and Modern Management

resisting_slaveryFrom Forbes

While studying the history of business practices, HBS researcher Caitlin Rosenthal made a startling discovery:  Many of the techniques pioneered by slave owners in the 1800s are widely used in business management today.  Rosenthal discusses her findings in this story by Katie Johnston, which first appeared on the HBS Working Knowledge website.

Caitlin C. Rosenthal didn’t intend to write a book about slavery. She set out to tackle something much more mundane: the history of business practices. But when she started researching account books from the mid-1800s, a period of major economic development during the rise of industrialization in the United States, Rosenthal stumbled across an unexpected source of innovation.

Rosenthal, a Harvard-Newcomen Fellow in business history at Harvard Business School, found that southern plantation owners kept complex and meticulous records, measuring the productivity of their slaves and carefully monitoring their profits—often using even more sophisticated methods than manufacturers in the North. Several of the slave owners’ practices, such as incentivizing workers (in this case, to get them to pick more cotton) and depreciating their worth through the years, are widely used in business management today.

As fascinating as her findings were, Rosenthal had some misgivings about their implications. She didn’t want to be perceived as saying something positive about slavery. On the contrary, she sees her research as a critique of capitalism—one that could broaden the understanding of today’s business practices. (more…)

A (Brief) People’s History of Gun Control

RM_Williamsby Kevin Carson
Center for a Stateless Society

From its very beginning, gun control — the attempt to regulate the possession of means of self-defense by the ordinary populace — has been closely associated with class rule and the class state.

In early modern England, regulation of firearm ownership was closely intertwined with the struggle by the landed classes and capitalist agriculture to restrict the laboring classes’ access to independent subsistence from the land. This included enclosure of common woodland, fen and waste — in which landless and land-poor peasants had previously hunted small game — for sheep pasturage or arable land. It also included exclusion of the common people from forests via the Game Laws and restriction of hunting to the gentry. (more…)