VBA Reading Group: Fight isolation; Let’s read about state formation

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VBA Reading Group: Fight isolation; Let’s read about state formation

The state. What is it? Why is it? What are its origins?

Are you inside you house right now and you miss babbling with your friends about some book or zine that you have read? Do you miss your local reading group? You normally do not have time to read but now find yourself with lots of time during this Corona-crisis? We are organizing a weekly book club, discussing the work of Peter Gelderloos: ‘Worshipping Power’.

VBA Reading group Worshipping power

We have never hosted an online book club before but we would like to experiment and see where it leads us. We get together online every week to discuss a chapter of this book. We will try to share the responsibilities in facilitating for those who are interested in that.

In this time where the state is using more of its power then it normally is, we thought it would be interesting to examine the state and its origins closer.

You can find a free version of the book HERE.

According to Worshiping Power, we need to stop thinking of the State as a potential vehicle for emancipation. From its origins, the State has never been anything other than a tool to accumulate power. This innovative and partisan study of human social complexity cuts through inadequate theories of early state formation to uncover social practices and institutions that have stifled egalitarian forms of self-organization throughout history. Just as importantly, it shows that the difficulties and consequences of state formation are not relegated to prehistory. Despite a ubiquity that renders them almost invisible today, states are constantly trying to augment their power, and all are closer to the brink of collapse than they would like to let on.

AK Press

Peter Gelderloos is an anarchist writer originally from Virginia. He is the author of How Nonviolence Protects the State, Consensus, and Anarchy Works.’

Weekly: Tuesday 19h-21h, send a mail to vrijebondamsterdam (at) riseup (dot) net to sign up for the reading group.

We will start with the introduction and the first chapter on the 31st of March.

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