The Verso Book of Dissent: From Spartacus to the Shoe-Thrower of Baghdad

The Verso Book of Dissent: From Spartacus to the Shoe-Thrower of Baghdad

Language: English

Pages: 400

ISBN: 1844674487

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

The Verso Book of Dissent: From Spartacus to the Shoe-Thrower of Baghdad

Language: English

Pages: 400

ISBN: 1844674487

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Throughout the ages and across every continent, people have struggled against those in power and raised their voices in protest—rallying others around them and inspiring uprisings in eras yet to come. Their echoes reverberate from Ancient Greece, China and Egypt, via the dissident poets and philosophers of Islam and Judaism, through to the Arab slave revolts and anti-Ottoman rebellions of the Middle Ages. These sources were tapped during the Dutch and English revolutions at the outset of the Modern world, and in turn flowed into the French, Haitian, American, Russian and Chinese revolutions. More recently, resistance to war and economic oppression has flared up on battlefields and in public spaces from Beijing and Baghdad to Caracas and Los Angeles.

This anthology, global in scope, presents voices of dissent from every era of human history: speeches and pamphlets, poems and songs, plays and manifestos. Every age has its iconoclasts, and yet the greatest among them build on the words and actions of their forerunners. The Verso Book of Dissent will become an invaluable resource, reminding today’s citizens that these traditions will never die.

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Marx, Karl and Engels, Friedrich. Manifesto of the Communist Party, Verso, 1998. Matsushima Shotaro. Quoted in John H. Dower, Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II, W. W. Norton, 2000. Mayakovsky, Vladimir. Poems, trans. Dorian Rottenberg, Progress Publishers, 1972. McCarthy and John McMillan, eds, The Radical Reader: A Documentary History of the American Radical Tradition, New Press, 2003. McKay, Claude. Quoted in Arnold Adoff and Benny Andrews, eds, I Am the Darker Brother:

“robbers.” It seems to me that it is here, in a new form, and between other adversaries, that we find the war of the feudal barons against the merchants they robbed on the highways. … You confiscated the rifles of July. Yes; but the bullets have taken off. Every bullet of the Parisian workers is on its way around the world: they strike without cease; they will continue to strike until not a single enemy of the happiness of the people and of freedom is left standing. The trial at which Blanqui

overthrow of all existing social conditions. Let the ruling classes tremble at a Communistic revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Marx was thirty and Engels twenty-eight when they collaborated on the Manifesto, which was published by the League of Communists in London shortly before the outbreak of the revolutions of 1848. Although in his youth he was pulled out of the University of Bonn for his poor grades, Marx would go on to become the

problems. They are major problems for human beings. They pose issues that both men and women must think about. But men use traditional customs as shields. Relying on a large number of adherents, they brandish overhead the real power they hold over society and suppress the assertions of serious people, jeering at them and relying on unjust, cowardly means to get rid of them. Ignorant women who for millions of years past have been taught to remain as slaves are unable to escape from the slavish

toward a dangerous end. That’s why it’s really necessary that we have very clear ideas about the whole situation and that we throw out forever that bourgeois idea that the woman should stay home and not get involved in other things, in union or political matters, for example. Because, even if she’s at home, she’s part of the whole system of exploitation that her compañero lives in anyway, working in the mine or in the factory or wherever—isn’t that true? The wife of a miner and mother of seven

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