We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Necessity of Revolutionary Violence in Egypt

Click here to access article by Philip Rizk from Jadaliyya.

The author proceeds from the use of violence (including economic violence) to sustain state rule (I would argue its necessity for any class-structured society) to Nkrumah's excellent definition of neoliberalism (the current stage of capitalism), on to neoliberal's archetypal manifestation in Egypt, all of which lends support for his thesis of the necessity of revolutionary violence.
We are now in a new phase of the revolution, in which the decisive battle for the system’s perceived legitimacy manifests itself as an almost daily occurrence on Egypt’s streets. The most vital arena of this contestation is over the use of violence, without which this revolution could not go on. “Decolonization is always a violent phenomenon,” Frantz Fanon wrote, reflecting on the Algerian revolution. Without the violence of colonization – whether wrought by foreign or local powers – the violence of decolonization would not be necessary. If we are to take the neocolonial reality in Egypt seriously, then we have much to learn from Fanon’s analysis of colonial Algeria.