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The Anti-Capitalism Reader

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A refreshingly non-doctrinaire anthology of writings and interviews covering much of the intellectual geography of the new anti-market left.

$21.95 $16.46

What people are saying…

“Joel Schalit is one of that interesting new breed of young American leftist thinkers, with a large online presence, and a punk rock band and fanzine to run alongside his political collective and magazine Bad Subject . . . In just over 300 pages, Schalit and his contributors put forward an astounding array of anti-market arguments; survey countless pockets of anti-capitalist resistance (opposition to free-market logic comes from a surprisingly wide spectrum, from the WTO protesters in Seattle and the Zapatista rebellion, to fundamentalist religion and even some centrists and conservatives); and assess the role of culture as a public sphere in which opposition can be rehearsed. But what’s most striking about this book is not so much its multiplicity of viewpoints or intellectual rigour, but the faint hint of optimism it contains . . . These essays are addressed to the intelligent but not necessarily academic reader, and there’s a touching conviction that the ideas here should and will be discussed by ordinary people like me, and perhaps like you too.”
The Independent on Sunday (UK)

“[A] must-read for any up-and-coming revolutionary who hates market economy, but isn’t sure why.”
Portland Mercury

“[A] highly accessible collection of the basics, immediately answering questions such as what anti-capilatism is and is not, why we need to call for structural reform, and why this is a critical change for day-to-day culture and economy. Provocative modern writers speak simply enough to educate the thinking masses.”
San Francisco Bay Guardian

The Anti-Capitalism Reader is an essential tool for envisioning a more just and rational world.”
XLR8R Magazine

“This collection of nicely accessible essays looks at the practice and theory of anti-capitalist politics in the modern world.”
The Big Issue (UK)

“Provocative and guaranteed to create debate and discourse wherever two readers gather.”
The Oklahoma Observer


The collapse of Enron and WorldCom and the increasing evidence of corruption at the highest levels of corporate life has opened the door to a remarkable whirlwind of dialogue about the prevailing economic ideology of the post–Cold War era. While traditionally the province of the left, concerns about the legitimacy of market-driven societies are now being voiced by centrists and conservatives, who fear that their livelihoods and their investments are suddenly at the mercy of forces spinning out of control.

Enter The Anti-Capitalism Reader, a refreshingly non-doctrinaire anthology of writings and interviews covering much of the intellectual geography of the new anti-market left that has become increasingly visible since anti-capitalist protests rocked the World Trade Organization’s 1999 meeting in Seattle.

Featuring essays by Doug Henwood, Naomi Klein, Ali Abunimah, Annalee Newitz, Paul Thomas, Ultra-red, and the Bad Subjects collective—and interviews with Slavoj Žižek, Toni Negri, Thomas Frank, and Wendy Brown—The Anti-Capitalism Reader moves from politics to culture, gender, and alternative economic systems. Each contributor presents accessible, hard-hitting (and sometimes humorous) critical insights that together make this volume an ideal partner in contemporary discourse about globalization, war, and economic decline.

Table of Contents

Introduction by Joel Schalit

Section One: My Definition is This
“What is Anti-Capitalism?” by J.C. Myers
“Does It Mean Anything to Be a Leninist in 2001?” by Doug Henwood
“What News from Genoa? Varieties of Anti-Capitalist Experience” by Paul Thomas
“The Public Sphere in the Era of Anti-Capitalism” by John Brady
Interview with Slavoj Žižek by Doug Henwood, with Joel Schalit

Section Two: Done by the Forces of Nature
“The Unknown Icon” by Naomi Klein
“No Justice, No Peace” by Ali Abunimah
“Visions of Leviathan” by J.C. Myers
“Interruptions in the Empire, the Power of the Exodus”: Interview with Toni Negri by Giuseppe Cocco & Maurizio Lazzarato
“Globalization and Trickle-Down Human Rights” by Joe Lockard
Interview with Doug Henwood by Charlie Bertsch

Section Three: Open Up the Iron Gate
“How Parallel Economies Are Working Against Global Capitalism” by Megan Shaw Prelinger
“From Bunny Rabbits to Barricades: Strategies of Anti-Capitalist Resistance” by Scott Schaffer
“Secularization and Its Discontents: Western Marxism and the Critique of Religion” by Joel Schalit
Interview with Wendy Brown by Charlie Bertsch

Section Four: Culture and the Angels of History
“Mama Cash: Buying and Selling Genders” by Charles Anders
“Peace, Love, Linux: When the Open Source Movement Got in Bed with Capitalism” by Annalee Newitz
Interview with Tom Frank by Charlie Bertsch
“Yes, Information Wants to be Free, But How’s That Going To Happen? Strategies For Freeing Intellectual Property” by Rick Prelinger
Interview with Colin Robinson by Joel Schalit & Charlie Bertsch
“Anti-Capitalist Taste” by Charlie Bertsch
Interview with Ramsey Kanaan by Megan Shaw Prelinger

“Imperial Beach: A Soundtrack With Images” by Ultra-red

Correction: On page 281 of The Anti-Capitalism Reader, The Monthly Review is inaccurately identified as “associated with the Trotskyite International Socialist Organization.”

Book Details

  • Paperback: 325 pages
  • Published: 6/1/02
  • IBSN: 9781888451337


JOEL SCHALIT is a writer and editor based in Berlin, Germany. The author of the critically-acclaimed Jerusalem Calling, and the editor of several collections including The Anti-Capitalism Reader, Schalit has edited some of America’s most influential independent magazines, including Punk Planet, Tikkun, and the legendary ’90s e-zine, Bad Subjects. His work has also appeared in AlterNet, the Forward, openDemocracy, and the Guardian. Schalit currently comments on Mideast politics for French global news broadcaster France 24, and is the editor of Seattle’s new politics and culture daily, Souciant. Israel vs. Utopia is his latest book.

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