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Prefigurative Politics

Paperback / softback By Paul Raekstad, Sofa Saio Gradin
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Product Description

Many of us wonder what we could possibly do to end oppression, exploitation, and injustice. People have studied revolutions and protest movements for centuries, but few have focused on prefigurative politics, the idea of 'building the new society within the shell of the old'.

 Fed up with capitalism? Get organised and build the institutions of the future in radical unions and local communities. Tired of politicians stalling on climate change? Set up an alternative energy collective. Ready to smash racism and the patriarchy? Root them out in all areas of our lives, not just in 'high politics'.

 This is the first book dedicated to prefigurative politics, explaining its history and examining the various debates surrounding it. How can collective decision-making be inclusive? In what ways are movements intersectional? Can prefigurative organisations scale up? It is a must-read for students of radical politics, anarchism, and social movements, as well as activists and concerned citizens everywhere.

Product Details

Format: Paperback / softback, 180 pages Language: English
Dimension: 137 x 15 x 213mm ISBN10: 1509535918
Weight: 272g ISBN13: 9781509535910
Publication Date: 26 Nov 2019 Publisher: Polity Press

About Author

Paul Raekstad lectures in Political Theory at the University of Edinburgh and is one of the creators of the You

Tube channel Red Plateaus.

Sofa Saio Gradin is an organiser, writer and youth worker, and lectures in Politics at King's College London.

Product Reviews


ÂPrefigurative Politics is essential reading for anyone who is serious about building a new world in the shell of the old. Concise, clear, and powerful, Raekstad and GradinÂs work illuminates histories of prefiguration and charts a course forward.

ÂMark Bray, Dartmouth College, author of Antifa: The Anti-Fascist HandbookÂThe left often struggles with an internal contradiction between (a) implementing strategies and tactics to undo its opponents, and (b) advocating for an alternative social structure. Raekstad and Gradin embrace this contradiction and consider how best to mutually reinforce both components of a broad left strategy. Here is productive strategic thinking among advocates of basic social change.

ÂRichard D. Wolff, University of Massachusetts, AmherstÂA wonderful and timely contribution to the growing literature on (socialist) activist strategy. Both authors draw extensively on their own experiences with activism and their academic research.


. Everyone interested in left-activism or simply longing for a better future should read Prefigurative Politics.

ÂMarx and Philosophy Review of Books


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