Performing anarchism, practicing freedom, pursuing revolt

By Simon Springer

If anarchism is a spirit, it is the spirit of revolt. For those unfamiliar with the actual content of anarchism or the enabling possibilities of revolt this statement might appear doubly negative. Just as so much of the contemporary discourse surrounding anarchism is framed by derision and a seemingly wilful confusion of what the idea represents, so too has the idea of revolt been read though an unfavourable lens. What happens when we shatter that lens, thus allowing the light of revolt to refract in new ways that illuminate a path toward freedom? We want to create freedom in our lives, to bring the poetic joy of being in the world to each moment of breath, and to fill the spaces of our existence with a deep and unshakable love for the mystery known as ‘life’. To do this requires us to revolt. To bring light we must pursue a trajectory that refuses the darkness, death, and dismay of the age we live in. The challenges of our time require us to rebel against the disabling faith in the idea that oppression, hierarchy, and captivity are somehow the natural consequences of human evolution. Our revolt is our emancipation. It is the aperture through which the light of freedom passes, revealing a full spectrum of colour, wonder, and imagination. Yet this sentiment of revolt should not be conceived as a transcendental moment, as it is much more accurate to envision revolution as a politics of the everyday, a product of immanence. Accordingly, because our lives are lived in the here of this space and the now of this moment, it is only in the ongoing enactment of our actual daily performances that freedom itself is called into being. But these ordinary routines can’t be any presentation, for performances are multiple and they can just as often be cruel as they can be compassionate. To pursue revolt then is to practice freedom, and it is our contention that to practice freedom is to perform anarchism.


Categories: Anarchism/Anti-State

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