Societies Against the State: Politics, Theory, and Culture
Investigates examples, explores logics and practices, and pursues evaluation of non statist solutions to political organization.Enroll in Course
This seminar is meant to explore alternatives to liberal representative democracy. Is politics equivalent to state action? Or can it be found in seemingly unlikely places, such as Kurdish villages, indigenous Mexican assemblies, or Roma settlements? Is democracy an inherently Western concept? Does it refer to a form of governance (a mode of communal self-organization), or a form of government (one particular way of organizing a state apparatus)? Today, when politics is the preserve of statesmen and professors, experts and media mavens, and not the subject of widespread public debate, no-state models of democratic politics are well worth examining--perhaps more than ever before.
Andrej Grubačić is the founding Chair of the Anthropology and Social Change department, incoming editor of the Journal of World-Systems Research, and affiliated faculty at the Berkeley Center for Social Medicine, UC Berkeley.
Following the collapse of Socialist Yugoslavia, Andrej left for the United States. He moved to State University of New York, where he participated in research working groups at the Fernand Braudel Center on anarchist implications of world-systems analysis. In 2008 he moved to San Francisco and worked in the sociology department at the University of San Francisco and urban studies department at the San Francisco Art Institute.
Following Peter Kropotkin and Marcel Mauss, he studies world history as a struggle between institutions of possessive individualism and institutions of mutual aid. This research is included in his UC Press book Living at the Edges of Capitalism: Adventures in Exile and Mutual Aid, co-authored with Denis O'Hearn,
Frequently Asked Questions
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