Red and Black Revolution



RBR 10 (not online yet)

What is communism

What is communism?
The complete article of which an extract appears in Red And Black Revolution No 10. "Of course its not that important to get hung up on a name, for many people the Concise definition of communism being something to do with Marx and the USSR is the one they know. For us the name of the post-capitalist society we aim to help construct is a detail, what matters is the content of the ideas."


PDF file of RBR 9]

The nomad, the displaced and the settler: Work in the 21st Century
A number of issues are being discussed. Firstly has the workplace changed fundamentally such that people increasingly are in temporary work rather than permanent work? Secondly is the division between work time and non-work time dissolving, are we spending more of our lives 'in work'? Thirdly are the non-work aspects of life becoming increasingly insecure?

A look at workers in Ireland
Chainworkersmeans the 'workers in malls, shopping centres, hypermarkets, and in the myriad of jobs of logistics and selling in the metropolis'. Brainworkers means the knowledge workers, the programmers, the creatives and the freelancers. How do these categories pan out in the Irish labour market? Originally a box in the article The nomad, the displaced and the settler: Work in the 21st Century

After Nationalism
An analysis of why many on the left joined Sinn Fein and what their options are now.
I joined Sinn Féin in the mid eighties with many others on the back of what we saw as a radical shift to the left and a commitment to build a 32 county Democartic Socialist Republic. I find myself outside that movement now, thoroughly disillusioned with it and its shift to a left nationalist and social democratic electoralist future.

The Ghost of Mayday Past
Compared to many other European countries May Day demonstrations have always been small in Ireland. By the mid-1990's, May Day had become a fairly underwhelming event. So, given this dismal tradition why were the explicitly libertarian May Day events in 2004, comparatively speaking, such a success?

Learning from May Day: Anti-Capitalist Strategy direct action, militancy and building the movement
The experience of May Day brings up us back to some of the perennial questions thrown up by counter-summits protests: how do we broaden our movement and what role do direct action and confrontational tactics have in that process

Learning from May Day: Organisational Problems
Without a proper convergence centre in which to debate and discuss issues related to the protests many of the international activists. Legal and defendant support work was more piecemeal than it should have been. These problems were not just oversights, they are serious political problems

Book Review: To Live
The 'civil war' within the Civil War that occurred in Spain between 1936-39 is a difficult business to understand. Mick Parkin has succeeded admirably in his short novel
To Live.

Book Review: Parecon: life after capitalism
Anarchists, in common with all radical proponents of social change are continually asked what their vision of a new society/economy is.
The book outlines a radical vision of social and economic reconstruction whose core principles and values, Solidarity, Equity, Diversity and Self-Management, are very familiar to anarchists

Creating Solidarity in the Slums of Santiago
This article will be added to the site May 2006



RBR 8 cover

PDF file of Red and Black Revolution 8

After the Dust Settles - Lessons from the Summit Protests
Despite the very real problems associated with the idea of 'summit hopping' and spectacular protest these manifestations have provided a public face of anarchism and at least as importantly have given anarchists an opportunity to work together

Summit protests and networks
The major advantage of the network form of organisation is that it allowed the rapid development and growth of a movement of tens of thousands from a tiny base without significant resources But no single form of organisation, unless it is one that involves the majority of workers, will ever be able to take it on in a straight fight

Media Mayhem - Anarchists and the Mass Media
This article examines the mainstream media and looks at the various factors which ensure that it effectively works as a propaganda tool for the powerful. It looks at ways in which anarchists can deal with this situation, by creating our own media, but also by challenging the hostility that they habitually encounter from the mainstream. It is mostly based on the experience of the 2004 Mayday protests in Dublin.

Playing the Media Game
Perhaps the two biggest problems in dealing with the media are firstly that the media can, through the questions they ask and the pressures they bring, begin to set the political agenda of the group. Secondly servicing the media machine can take up all a group's time and energy (to the detriment of the other activity).

The ideas of James Connolly
James Connolly is probably the single most important figure in the history of the Irish left. He was an organiser in the IWW in the USA but in Ireland is best known for his role in building the syndicalist phase of Irish union movement and for involving the armed defence body of that union, the Irish Citizens' Army in the 1916 nationalist insurrection. This left a legacy claimed at one time or another not only by all the Irish left parties but also by the nationalists of Fianna Fail and Sinn Fein.

Workers Without Bosses - Workers' Self-Management in Argentina
The original battle cry of Argentinean people "Que se vayan todos" - We want all of them out - that expressed the will to break with the corrupt bureaucracies, with the political class, turned out with all of them staying in the end. These experiences also highlight many of the problems anarchists elsewhere face in the wake of popular risings and they show us that the building of a libertarian society is not a matter of repeating clichés and slogans.

Review: No Global - The People of Ireland Versus the multinationals
No Global appears at a vital time. Anyone who wants to see how the bigger picture has unfolded to date can read in detail about the numerous struggles. But No Global is less clear and less persuasive when it comes to dissecting the political ideas within the environmental movement and the problems these caused


Back issues

Red and Black Revolution 7
PDF file of Red And Black Revolution 7

Has the Black Block tactic reached the end of its usefulness? by Severino (Barricada Collective)
As class struggle anarchists who recognize the importance of a diversity of tactics in order to attack Capital, the State, and oppression in an effective manner, we see the black bloc as an important tool of struggle. Only one tool among many, but an important one nonetheless.

Where to Now? Anti-capitalist protest - global and local by Gregor Kerr
It is certainly hard to avoid the conclusion that anti-globalisation protests that avoid direct action will kill off the movement, or at least greatly reduce participation in it.

Repressing Abortion in Ireland by Mary Favier (Doctors For Choice)
The Republic of Ireland has one of the most draconian abortion laws in the world. At present abortion may only be performed where continuation of pregnancy poses a 'real and substantial' risk to a pregnant woman's life - about 5 cases per year of 50,000 pregnancies

Direct Action against the war in Ireland by Andrew Flood
In every country after February 15th the anti-war movement was thus faced with the question of what to do next. In Ireland almost all of the direct action protests were targeted on Shannon airport. More than half dozen successful actions took place, ranging from a large scale breach of the fence in October, to physical attacks on planes as the build up to war escalated.

The IAWM's dismal leadership" A critique of the politics of Trotskyism by Dec McCarthy
After months of regularly attending the Irish Anti-War Movement's marches and particularly after months of listening to the speeches of the leading lights of the IAWM my head is buzzing with cant and rhetoric and I have that dejected feeling you get when you know you have just lost a chance that won't be coming around again for a long time.

Industrial Collectivisation during the Spanish Revolution by Deirdre Hogan
Within hours of the start of the Spanish revolution workers had seized control of 3000 enterprises. This included all public transportation services, shipping, electric and power companies, gas and water works, engineering and automobile assembly plants, mines, cement works, textile mills and paper factories, electrical and chemical concerns, glass bottle factories and perfumeries, food processing plants and breweries.

If you want to create Socialism - it must be based on Freedom by James O'Brien
Anarchists also seek to create communism. But for us freedom plays a central role, not only in the future society, but in how we try to get there. That is why, when we talk of communism, we talk of libertarian communism

Open Borders: The case against immigration controls reviewed by Conor McLoughlin
Most mainstream groups eventually come down clearly in favour of immigration controls and deportations, though arguing for "generosity." This book takes a position that so far has only won over a small but growing minority and argues for the immediate ending of all border controls.

The trouble with Islam by Andrew Flood
The September 11 attacks, the Afghan war that followed from it and the ongoing war in Israel/Palestine have once again raised the issue of Islam in the minds of many anarchists in Ireland and Britain. Not just because of the role Islam has in shaping those conflicts but also because militant Islam has become a far more noticeable presence on solidarity demonstrations.

Previous issues
(click on image to download PDF file)

Red & Black Revolution 6

Read No 6 online

Red and Black Revolution 5

Read No 5 online

Red & Black Revolution Number 4

Read No 4 online

Red & Black Revolution Number 3

Read No 3 online

RBR 3 cover

Read No 2 online

RBR 4 cover

Read No 1 online