Chaia Heller

For Murray, by Chaia Heller

A eulogy for Murray Bookchin, on the occasion of the anniversary of his birthday, January 14th, 1921.

“The Fallen,” by Chaia Heller

Tonight we were eating turkey burgers on our deck. The pooling heat of the day had drained, leaving behind an unexpected cool stillness that lured us gingerly back outside. I set the table for dinner, putting life into place, when all of the sudden: a thump. A soft landing of new life, warbling around in a black silveryness on the deck. A baby sparrow had fallen from its nest, lobbed itself to the deck’s edge, falling onto the grass below. It had spilled from an ill-constructed nest built by well-meaning sparrow parents under the balcony outside [...]

Biotechnology, Democracy, and Revolution

Biotechnology is a question of power. It is a question about the power to decide what kind of technologies a society will use and for what purpose. In this way, biotechnology is linked to the broader question of political power and democracy. It leads us to think about how we, as a society, make vital decisions about how to relate to each other and to the rest of the natural world. When we think about biotechnology in this way, we see that biotechnology is not just [...]

McDonalds, MTV, and Monsanto: Resisting Biotechnology in the Age of Informational Capital

Introduction: Biotechnology as a Mode of Production

A thing is a history of a thing, and more. Indeed, history is a tangled web with frayed edges, each woven into what came before. And so it is with biotechnology. To understand it, we must understand its history, the wider universe of people, places, and things that brought it into being. Biotechnology is bigger than the instruments, organisms, and scientists who move strands of DNA from one cell to another. It is a mode of production, a way of thinking about [...]

Revving It Up! The Revolutionary Potential of the New Anti-Globalization Movement

International systems of power are bursting out of the single-issue framework. Confronted by the exponential expansion and integration of new markets, technologies, regulatory bodies, and ecological crises, activists are turning to “globalization” as a way to talk about the increasingly totalizing dimensions of capitalist and state power. Globalization-talk reflects a nascent [...]

Notes on an Ecology of Everyday Life

If I can’t dance in your revolution, I’m not coming.
– Emma Goldman

We need to rethink desire in social, rather than romantic or individualistic terms. This is crucial because, while our society offers us a variety of ways to describe the many dimensions of romantic and individualistic desire, we are offered a paltry vocabulary with which to describe a social understanding of desire. We are saturated by consumerist rhetoric of ‘personal satisfaction’ yet rarely do we hear eloquent discussion regarding the craving for a free and non-hierarchical society. Our society [...]

Eco-cide in Women’s Bodies

As featured in Synthesis/Regeneration #3 (Spring 1992)

For too long, feminism has lacked a global, ecological focus. In the 90’s, as reproductive technologies, fundamentalists, and ecological poisoning are on the rise, women’s health and self-determination around the world are on a steady decline. Thinking globally about women’s health is vital if feminism is to transform women’s liberation into a collective, international movement toward self-determination.

The environmental movement in the U.S. has not shown a tremendous interest in women’s health or self-determination. In fact, it is often rightfully accused of being a [...]