Anti-politics…explained

anti-politics
A Christmas pinata party for the children on December 13, 1948, at the Rose Hill Courts Housing Project, located at Montecito Drive and Sardonyx Street near the El Sereno area of Los Angeles. (source)
Here is our attempt to explain what anti-politics means to us and how we link it to communization and ultimately to communism.

Anti-politics: action and theory that posits itself against the sphere of politics (and therefore also political-economy). Politics being the sphere of power, alienation, mediation and domination. In this way anti-politics questions & attacks the mediation & coercion found in democracy; the centrality & domination of the economy (whether capitalist or not) in our lives, patriarchy & its deadly logic; settler-colonialism & its persistence; questions whether the breadth of human desires could ever constitute a unitary & enumerated positive program and opens itself up to the possibility of affinities of shared antagonism with those who do not explicitly express themselves politically but nonetheless attack that which anti-politics is set against (i.e. rioters).

Anti-politics does not seek to “build power” although the building of the capacity to broaden communal self-defense and social-reproduction is a part of the struggle against power, it is not the struggle itself. Immigrant enclaves and other dominated peoples have always found ways to support each other through moments of direct attack (fascists, racists, the police) or indirect attacks (racialized & gendered wage relation, State policy). This is what we call mutual aid. Mutual aid is a force that binds us, but it is not in itself an antagonistic force. The State & Capital sees very little problem in proletarians getting by on their own: in many ways it unloads the burden from their shoulders. Anti-politics is that antagonistic force. It is when anger, pain, or even joy hits the streets against this world.

So many moments in recent history have shown that revolt against power has not come from a previously united powerful front (unless you still dream of 1917), but by those who have found each other in the struggle and sought to extend & generalize their revolt until they are free. The goal of this project is to do just that. Our capacity to destroy the order which maintains the world as we right now live is linked to how quickly, deeply and generally revolt is spread. A war against the order we are forced to live under is a losing war. This is how anti-politics is linked to communization.

Communization, similarly, does not seek to create new nodes of power (or counter-power) but to act as an encroaching acid on power through the openings created by a revolutionary moment (or moments). Though communization looks on to the terrain from the ground-level: how do we, as proletarians, abolish that which makes us racialized & gendered proletarians (self-abolition) while also bringing about another way: communism. Anti-politics tends to look up from the ground with its sights on politics, on power. So communization is not a political program to be installed, but rather the revolution as the creation of communism immediately.

Now some clarification of what we mean by communism.

Many think of Stalinist Russia, or the Cuba which Fidel Castro ruled for decades, or even the regime of North Korea. All those Nation-States hold, as their claim, the intent to build communism through some variation of State Socialism. As anarchists, who also call themselves communists, we see their attempts as different forms of State Capitalism. Money still exists. Commodities are still produced. There are still police and prisons. Gendered violence and division of labor largely maintained. Work as a sphere of life separate from the rest of life maintained. Race persists and is violently maintained. Value is still valorized. The State is still the final arbiter of what will be and what will not be.

Communism is a free, classless way of life. No State; no money; no commodity-production; gender & race as a site of oppression abolished; stolen Native lands restored[1]; work abolished[2]; art re-integrated into daily life; the economic way of life largely (if not totally) abolished; decision-making no longer a specialized separate sphere of life; and the parties are gonna be pretty banging.

There is much more to be said and we wish we had more time to say it: this project is run by proletarians and free time is not a luxury we have. This is but a modest first attempt at attempting to explain why we say the things we do, do the things we do and why this project exists at all. La lucha sigue y sigue.

Footnotes

[1] This is something we add into our variant of communization but it is something not found in communization theory in general since the bulk of theorization has arrived from Western Europe. This is a deep flaw and one which we look forward to further theorize and write about in the future since Ediciones inéditos is a project that sits on occupied Tongva territory. Creating communism on a territory occupied by settlers without questioning the settler-colonial relation would merely be a perpetuation of settler-colonialism.

[2] For further reading on the abolition of work see our translation of Gille Dauvé’s “Getting Rid of Work.” https://ediciones-ineditos.com/2018/03/08/getting-rid-of-work/

2 Comments

  1. stolen Native lands restored

    Shouldn’t communism aim to create a society in which people can live wherever they want? Not at any sort of “restoration.”

    Fewer than 2,000 Tongva remain today, which is indeed a tragedy. But who says they would want to live in what has become Los Angeles? Why not somewhere else, since the whole world will be available to all?

    Certainly it is awful that they were forced out to begin with, and are kept from living there (or anywhere) today. However, as communists, we recognize that land does not “belong” inherently to anyone. Rather, it belongs to all.

    Like

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