What's New with LBC - Fall of 2017
From Little Black Cart
Welcome to the quarterly newsletter of the Little Black Cart project. We distribute anarchist anti-political books, pamphlets, and newspapers. This quarter we present to you two new books and six new pamphlets on a variety of topics from abortion to communism, informants to antifa, and the paths along the way.
We are proud of our two books this quarter. The first is a collection from anarchist prisoners Travis Washington and Sean Swain and their collaborators Jeremy Hammond, Comrade Migs, Anthony Rayson, Todd Tarselli, Kevin "Rashid" Johnson, and Howard Stephens called /The Last Act of the Circus Animals/. The second is the complex story of what is the actual experience of Somalian pirates originally published in French by the publisher L'Insomniaque, a project we hope to do more with in the future.
This season has been particularly interesting for us at LBC. We have really had to examine what it means to publish controversial ideas. To suffer the slings and arrows of All The Bad Names and consider exactly what is the power of the petty tyrants calling themselves anarchists yet who ban, censor, and marginalize voices considered Bad (but usually not actually read or understood). We want to thank our haters because in addition to forcing us to take a stronger stand in defense of the free expression of ideas we have had more varied interest in our project over the last quarter than in the past few years. It isn't exactly true that controversy sells books but it does energize people to talk about ideas in a more engaged and passionate way than they would otherwise. So thanks for that even though we fear that this current generation of wrong-headed people might ruin the good name of a passionate, chaotic, anarchistic space, but perhaps antifa has already done that.
Last Act of the Circus Animals - By Travis Washington and Sean Swain
This is an anarchist Animal Farm but more it is an expression of solidarity from a group of men whose feelings for each other ring louder than their charming tale of a prison escape. I envy this and wish it were as easy to have such unity out here as it appears to be in there.
A story for children of all ages!
2017 is the tenth anniversary of this fable by two long-term political prisoners, Travis Washington and anarchist Sean Swain. Originally told in three pamphlets (and distributed by Anthony Rayson), this story has been making the rounds of prisons in the u.s., and inspiring prisoners, for all those years. Little Black Cart is delighted to present the full story in a single volume, with introductory comments by Rayson, Jeremy Hammond, and Comrade Migs, and as many of the original drawings as we could fit in.
This is one more amazing example demonstrating that prison is not the end of radical, interesting, funny, profound thought and activity.
During the night, after the sudden burst of rain, a mist had settled in low to the ground, while in the moonlight where it meandered across the open expanses–large swaths of sun-baked earth where nothing grew. In the grassy areas, the mist moved around the stalks of weeds and blades of grass, serving sometimes as additional cover for the life that lived there, concealed. Where the grasslands met the denser growth of the jungle, the mist glowed against the darkness of the triple-canopy refuge that shut out even the moonlight.
As the sun rose and the rays of light stretched long shadows across the surface of things, a light breeze caressed the gently swaying long grasses, emerald and yellow, and the light and the breeze melted away much of the moisture from the night before. All the world inhaled deeply, vibrant with life at the birthpangs of the new day.
Everything was alive.
For more information - Last Act of the Circus Animals
Brethren of the Coast - by Iskashato
A memoir in support of Somali pirates, hunted down by all the world powers.
Translated from the French, this book brings first person narratives and interviews with political and economic analysis to contextualize the reality and the public perception of people publicized as pirates, who sometimes are, and sometimes are not, as well as how they are treated (horribly), when they are taken into custody, usually far from their homes. Written from an anarchist perspective, this is a start view of what modern-day colonialism looks like, and what fighting it looks like too.
In our times, piracy, which was never eradicated but has long remained confined in the archipelagoes of southeast Asia, is seeing a revival in several poorly controlled maritime zones of the planet, notably Africa. But it is what is raging off the Somali coast that has recently caused the most losses and disruption, and has kept the media’s attention. Once again, myth finds its way into the story, and the journalists have sought to forge a new malevolent figure, one who menaces the well being of western consumers in upsetting petroleum and merchandise imports produced in countries with extremely low wages: the Somali pirate, like the eastern barbarian, is driven not by political or religious fanaticism but by the even more vile lure of money.
So, looking closely at what is really going on with the pirates of the Horn, at their motivations and their practices, it’s actually the myth of David and Goliath that comes to mind: their cause, which is just short of being universal, comes largely out of self-defense against the voracity of the powerful, as we will see in the coming pages; there aren’t very many of them and they have little to eat; their means, particularly their weapons, are ridiculous; the highly diverse coalition of their enemies controls the world empire—more particularly the seas—and has incomparable technical mastery of naval combat.
As this aspect of things inevitably became more clear—despite the dissimulation or the lies of the military-industrial complex’s parrots, and at the risk of tarnishing the glory of the brave gendarmes of the sea—the public powers and their media relays have progressively de-dramatized their discussion of the Somali pirates.
For more information - Brethren of the Coast
Voltairine de Cleyre: Thoughts on Communism
In the swings of the pendulum when anarchism is a more popular word, it can get confusing to know what anarchism means (as people interpret it in such wildly divergent ways). Voltairine is one person who dealt with similar questions in her life, and was both open (she talks about how and when she changes her mind in her life), and steady in her resolve. So she remains a lynchpin for how to maintain both flexibility and a strong vision. This pamphlet includes an excerpt from her biography by Hippolyte Havel, and the three pieces, "A Glance at Communism," "The Economics of Dyer D. Lum," and "The Individualist and the Communist." De Cleyre was remarkable for many things, not least of which were her capacities to learn, to write, and to change her mind publicly and articulately. Here she discusses what communism meant to her, a conversation that never stops needing to be had, apparently.
Against the Couple Form/They Who Marry Do Ill
People tend to be more familiar with Emma Goldman's thoughts on relationships, as she was a remarkable speaker, and free love was one of her most provocative topics. But Voltairine's article "They Who Marry do Ill," is one of the most compelling pieces on how formal coupling does a disservice to the people involved, and it continues to speak to some of us today. It is contextualized here with "Against the Couple Form," a recent piece from Lies: A Journal of Materialist (ie Marxist) Feminism.
In the interest of exposing and exploring what the various faces of infiltration are, how different people and scenes have dealt with them, how they were outed, and more, we introduce our Informant Series. This series is not about name-calling or grandstanding; it is definitely about having a realistic sense of what infiltrators have looked like, sounded like, and how they have acted, and sometimes, about what not to do in the future.The series will emphasize first-person accounts.
Even in the best case scenario, infiltration is never an easy thing to recover from, scenes have been betrayed, and even if folks made no mistakes in their security, we're left feeling disoriented and destabilized. More stories about how infiltration actually happens can only help us to prepare and recover from the future instances we all know will happen.
In the days of an active anarchist scene in Tacoma, Washington, there was an informant who infiltrated that scene. This pamphlet is from first-person accounts of two of the anarchists who were closest to him during his time undercover.
Brandon Darby is anomalous in the world of informants, not because what he did is so unusual, but because he claimed to be proud of his turncoat behavior, and has gone on to be so successful and public on the other side (as a commentator for Breitbart). His apparent lack of shame, evident in the interviews he did afterwards, provides some perspective that we don't usually get on why informants do what they do, and how they rationalize it to themselves. There is a lot of public information about Darby (the movie Informant, most notably, but also multiple interviews), but this pamphlet compiles information from various sources, most of whom knew Darby and worked with him, sometimes for a long time.
wild carrot seed 101
In the u.s., abortion continues to be under attack, as it has been for decades, both before and after Roe v. Wade. Those attacks are getting more and more blatant (in California there is an initiative aiming to make birth control legally count as abortion). For those who don't want to bear children, and especially for those who don't have healthcare, we continue to look to the plant world for (at least temporary) solutions.
There are many pamphlets in the world about how to induce miscarriage, or how to encourage your period. Some of them are out of date, some of them are wrong, and some are confusing. This is a pamphlet made by someone we know and trust, about a lesser-known option for people who are not trying to get pregnant.
In the spirit of DIY and reclaiming information about our bodies and non-industrial options for health, we're happy to provide this. (Obviously nothing is a panacaea, but more options are better than fewer.)
When Insurrections Die
This essay by Gilles Dauvé, originally titled Fascism and Anti-fascism, looks at insurrections in Europe in the early 1900s (Brest-Litovsk, Rome, Turin, Berlin, Barcelona), discusses the Second World War and the difference between collectivising and communalising. Originally translated by Pannekoek Press, and posted originally on the Troploin website.
For years Dauvé has had clear, normal language, analysis on the state of capitalism, and here he brings his normal incisive anti-state perspective to the question of how to actually fight not just obvious fascism, but the underlying factors as well. These days definitions of fascism are rampant, and frequently unclear (or tacit), so whether you agree or not with his particular definition, it's a good practice in clear writing and thinking about the topic.
Recent LBC Titles & Distro Items
- Toward an Army of Ghosts
- The second volume by Tom Nom@d on insurgent strategy
- Single Copy of Black Seed - Contemporary Green Anarchist paper
- An Inquiry into the Causes and Nature of the Misery of People - By Jean-Pierre Voyer
- The Wandering of Humanity - By Jacques Camatte
- Anarchist Speculations - The writings of John Moore
- Atassa: Readings in eco-extremism
- Anarchy & Nietzsche
- Elpis Journal - A Journal of Pessimistic writing
- Feral Consciousness
LBC Years in Review 2017
Feel free to download the 2017 LBC Review for your amusement, edification, and to learn some of what we've been thinking during the past few years.
After several years we have finally got ourselves a silkscreen setup. Here are some shirts.
Little Black Cart 2017
The LBC Catalog
Not that you'd ever deign to use it but the LBC Catalog is available as a PDF. We tend to only print these things for special events but we get it, we read in the bathroom too!
Want to help?
Are you in the Bay Area and would you like to help make LBC projects happen? Drop us a line.
Send manuscript proposals to us at info@lbc
Become an Intern
In a program that we're really happy with, LBC hosts a new intern every three months. If you are interested in becoming a close friend with LBC and being exposed to the ideas and personalities around the project and our environs, if you've been wanting time and encouragement to work on or start that awesome anarchist project you've had in mind, feel free to reach out to us at our email address for more information. We are currently looking for an intern for the Fall of 2018. !!!
Politics is the enemy of anarchy, and it knows it.