Social Ecology: Communalism against Climate Chaos

An article by ISE board member Brian Tokar, featured in the Winter 2018 issue of ROAR Magazine with an overall theme of System Change: "To address the full magnitude of the climate crisis and maintain a habitable planet for future generations we need to shatter the myths of capitalist growth once and for all."

New review of “Ecology or Catastrophe”

Published in Anarchist Studies 25:1, pp.103-105.

By Eleanor Finley, University of Massachusetts Amherst, PhD student & ISE Board member,
and Dr. Federico Venturini, Independent Researcher and Activist, Transnational Institute for Social Ecology

A review of Janet Biehl, Ecology or Catastrophe: The Life of Murray Bookchin, Oxford University Press, 2015

In recent years, there has been a resurgence of interest in the work of leftist political philosopher Murray Bookchin. Given these events, now seems like a perfect time for the release of a biography about this thinker who dedicated his life to bringing about a coherent vision of a truly [...]

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    Teaming with Black activists and microbes for the soul of organic

Teaming with Black activists and microbes for the soul of organic

by Grace Gershuny,
[Originally posted at http://www.organic-revolutionary.com/single-post/2017/05/29/Teaming-with-Black-activists-and-microbes-for-the-soul-of-organic]

I tend to be a big picture thinker, and have always just assumed that the connections between organic agriculture and social justice were self-evident. Yet clearly many others don’t see this connection, and believe that with the advent of a federally mandated organic certification and marketing program, organic has lost its soul.
However, there was plenty of soul in evidence at last spring’s Farm to Plate Conference in Ithaca, NY.  For the first time in my long history of attending such conferences, the key organizers and all four opening keynote [...]

Kurds and supporters gather in Hamburg

Internationalizing Democratic Modernity : A report from Challenging Capitalist Modernity III

by Eleanor Finley

From April 15 – 17, 2017 in Hamburg, Germany the Kurdish freedom movement held its third instantiation of Challenging Capitalist Modernity, the biennial conference dedicated to ‘democratic modernity’ and the ideas developed by imprisoned Kurdish political leader Abdullah Ocalan.

On the first day, over 1,200 activists, scholars, and students packed into a vast lecture hall, the University of Hamburg’s Audimax, with seven interpreter booths and two balconies. Outside, blossoming trees and vivid new grass lined the walkways, calling attention to Hamburg’s lovely German turn [...]

Reason, creativity and freedom: The communalist model

On the unique relevance of communalism in this historical moment. By Eleanor Finley, originally published by ROAR Magazine.
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    Beyond the Limits of Nature: A social-ecological view of growth and degrowth

Beyond the Limits of Nature: A social-ecological view of growth and degrowth

ISE board member Eleanor Finley has a new article titled Beyond the Limits of Nature: A social-ecological view of growth and degrowth. Part of the series Ecology after capitalism, it draws on Bookchin’s work to interrogate the limits of the degrowth perspective and contrasts it with social ecology’s analysis of post-scarcity and ecological development.

  • Permalink In this photo taken on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016, a family leave the Sur district in Diyarbakir, Turkey. The family are among tens of thousands displaced by fighting raging between Turkish security forces and militants in the southeast after a peace process collapsed in the summer. (AP Photo/Murat Bay)Gallery

    Sur: A neighbourhood of history, hope, and resistance: An interview with former mayor Abdullah Demirbas

Sur: A neighbourhood of history, hope, and resistance: An interview with former mayor Abdullah Demirbas

From 2004 until 2012, Abdullah Demirbas served as mayor of Diyarbakir (or Amed), Kurdistan's central Sur District, which has been largely destroyed in recent months by Turkish military assault.
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    Chaia Heller – Beyond Electoral Politics: Moving the Left Toward Communalism

Chaia Heller – Beyond Electoral Politics: Moving the Left Toward Communalism

"In November 2016, U.S. leftists will be offered up a blue and red pill provided by the matrix of our own failing democracy. Candidate #1 (let’s call this the blue pill) will be deemed the lesser of two evils, the greater of which is candidate #2 (the red pill). But what if, after responsibly choosing the pill determined to be less evil (an act of damage control), leftists then set their sights on going off their meds—that is, what if they aimed to leave the state matrix altogether? Local communalist politics, such as those outlined by Murray Bookchin’s theory of social ecology, beckon to leftists and offer a way to transcend the state by creating a confederation of directly democratic communities."

An organic revolutionary in South Korea

by Grace Gershuny

Last October I had the opportunity to deliver a talk at a conference in Goesan province, South Korea. The Regional Conference on Marketing & Innovation in Organic Farming was co-sponsored by IFOAM (International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements) with the Goesan provincial government. My presentation, co-authored by former IFOAM President Katherine DiMatteo, was entitled, “The organic revolution, or you can’t dismantle capitalism with a marketing plan” (full text was posted in September, but the link unfortunately may not work in all browsers).

The whole event was inspiring on many levels. The conference was part of [...]