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Communiqués and insurrectionary violence

Since the early 2000s, global, underground networks of insurrectionary anarchists have carried out thousands of acts of political violence. This book is an exploration of the ideas, strategies, and history of these political actors that engage in a confrontation with the oppressive powers of the state and capital. The vast majority of these attacks have been claimed via online communiqués through anonymous monikers such as the Informal Anarchist Federation (FAI). The emphasis of the insurrectionary, nihilist-infused anarchism is on creating war-like conditions for opposing capitalism, the state, and that which perpetuates structural violence (e.g. racism, poverty, speciesism, gender roles). To connect the various configurations of post-millennial, insurrectionary resistance, the book explores explore three of its most identifiable components, the FAI, Conspiracy of Cells of Fire (CCF), and emergent networks in Mexico. In his discussion of guerrilla warfare and terrorism, conflict theorist Richard Rubenstein points to a two-stage understanding advocated by Vietnamese leader and military strategist General Vo Nguyen Giap. The book also examines the strategy of Blanquism, the contribution of "classical anarchists," the influence of theorists such as Tiqqun and The Invisible Committee. It seeks to construct the basis for an insurrectionary framework based around a shared politic. The feminist methodology and ethic of research adds a great deal, including a reading of identity politics, standpoint theory, action-orientated research, and embedded, emotive and sincere participatory involvement. The design and methodological intent of the book is to embrace a "militant" form of inquiry which is counter to the project of securitization.

Open Access (free)

All political argument employs political concepts. They provide the building blocks needed to construct a case for or against a given political position. Justifications of oppression in the name of liberty are no mere products of the liberal imagination, for there are notorious historical examples of their endorsement by authoritarian political leaders. This book explores two approaches to rights: the interest-based (IB) approach, and the obligation-based or Kantian view. Both are shown to offer coherent justifications that can avoid turning all political concerns into a matter of rights. The concept of social justice emerged in both at the start of the twentieth century, and justified institutions for the democratic modification for market outcomes, on utilitarian, maximin or common good grounds. The book explores whether people do in fact have good and justifiable reasons for complying with laws that go beyond mere fear of punishment, and, if so, whether they are bound or obligated by those reasons to comply. It discusses national ties and how they are supposed to act as glue that holds the state together in the eyes of its citizens. The book also explores the link between the weakening of states and this change in criminal policies, and outlines their implications for individual rights. Theorists have used the idea of social exclusion to advocate an approach to social justice that sees increased labour-market participation as the key to equal to citizenship. The contemporary understandings of the public-private distinction and feminist critiques of these are also examined.

Open Access (free)

Introduction ‘Political obligation’ is a broad notion and covers many things. Some have said, for example, that the citizen has an obligation or duty to vote. Others have claimed that citizens may have a duty to serve their country and possibly even to fight in its defence. Most people who talk of political obligation, however, have one thing in particular in mind: the citizens’ duty to obey the laws

in Political concepts
A guide for A2 politics students
Series: Understandings

In liberal democracies there is a belief that citizens ought to take an active interest in what is happening in the political world. Political debate in modern Western democracies is a complex and often rowdy affair. There are three fundamental political issues: 'politics', 'power' and 'justice', which feature in almost all political discussions and conflicts. The book assesses the degree to which the state and state sovereignty are disappearing in the modern world of 'globalised' politics, economics and culture and new international institutions. The main features of the nation and the problems of defining it are outlined: population, culture, history, language, religion, and race. Different types of democracy and their most important features are discussed. 'Freedom' is usually claimed to be the prime objective of political activity. The book discusses equality of human rights, distributional equality, equality before the law, the claims for group equality on the grounds of race, gender, class. Rights, obligations and citizenship are closely associated. Ideology is the driving force of political discourse. The book also discusses nationalism's growth and development over the last two centuries with particular reference to its main features and assumptions. It outlines the development of conservatism as a political ideology and movement in Britain during the last two centuries. An overview of liberalism, socialism, Marxism, anarchism, and Fascism follows. Environmentalism and feminism are also discussed. Finally, the book talks about how ideological change occurs and stresses the importance of rationality in politics.

Case studies from Denmark and England

The inhabitants of most OECD countries tend to regard state intervention in the everyday lives of individual citizens and in society at large with certain scepticism. Health promotion is really not about curing diseases or even about preventing diseases. The overall aim of this book is to provide a critical understanding of current health promotion ideas and practices unfolding in liberal democracies. It identifies and discusses the merits and the limitations of the most influential political science and sociological analyses seeking to critically address contemporary politics of health. Foucault's analytics of power and government are discussed. The book then seeks to provide a solid understanding of the wider political context of health promotion in England and Denmark, examining obesity control in these regions. It also analyses how and why psychiatric patients, particularly those with chronic mental illness in England and Denmark, are urged to take charge of their mental illness with reference to the notion of rehabilitation. Key shifts in predominant forms of political rationalities and expert knowledge on how best to treat psychiatric patients are also analysed. Finally, the book examines how expert knowledge and political rationalities informed political interventions (policies, programmes, and technologies) in an attempt to promote rehabilitation along with increased implementation of community- based treatment. It summarizes the analytical findings regarding the governing of citizens through lifestyle and rehabilitation respectively. Further research is required on the politics of health promotion.

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The legacy of history

3835 Understanding Chinese:Layout 1 12/7/12 11:04 Page 5 1 Chinese politics The legacy of history What political scientists refer to as political culture – the deeply embedded distinctive patterns of political, economic and social behaviour that fundamentally shape politics – is best viewed as the accumulated legacies of a country’s history. History, however, is not destiny: while a country’s past shapes its politics it does not determine it. Change is ever present though the pace at which it occurs varies: sometimes glacial (with the political system

in Understanding Chinese politics
Place, space and discourse
Editors: Christine Agius and Dean Keep

Identity is often regarded as something that is possessed by individuals, states, and other agents. In this edited collection, identity is explored across a range of approaches and under-explored case studies with a view to making visible its fractured, contingent, and dynamic features. The book brings together themes of belonging and exclusion, identity formation and fragmentation. It also examines how identity functions in discourse, and the effects it produces, both materially and in ideational terms. Taking in case studies from Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and Latin America, the various chapters interrogate identity through formal governing mechanisms, popular culture and place. These studies demonstrate the complex and fluid nature of identity and identity practices, as well as implications for theorising identity.

Open Access (free)

Introduction One of the deep attractions of green political theory is its claim to be focused on the very survival of the whole natural ecosystem of the planet. In consequence, it also addresses the conditions for our biological continuance as a species. From our own species’ perspective, green theory could thus be said to be articulating the conditions whereby further meaningful human life is

in Political concepts
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The making of a regional political class in itself

3 Political careers: the making of a regional political class in itself In the first part of the empirical analysis the focus is on the political class as a dependent variable and remains restricted to its structural dimension as a class ‘in itself’. It is asked whether the concurrent processes of regionalisation and political professionalisation in Catalonia and Scotland have led to the emergence of a regional political class as constituted by the existence of professional politicians (functional differentiation) with a common regional career orientation

in Towards a regional political class?
An introduction to government in the People’s Republic of China

The Chinese political system is the subject of much media and popular comment in part because China supports an economy with an apparently inexorable dynamic and impressive record of achievement. This book provides a comprehensive introduction to China's political system, outlining the major features of the Chinese model and highlighting its claims and challenges. It explores the central role of the Communist Party in the country's politics and the way in which the Party controls most elements of the political system. The collapse of the imperial system in 1911, the subsequent decades of turmoil and war and the coming to power of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in 1949 constitutes a truly revolutionary period in Chinese political history. The People's Republic of China (PRC) represents an unanticipated challenge to the logic of history. The key organising principle of the political system of the PRC is the leadership of the CCP. China remains a Leninist party-state. The book also examines the role of the National People's Representatives Congress (NPC) and then the State Council and the associated structures of central government departments. Greater democracy is facilitated, as are other reforms, by the recasting of China's foreign policy to encourage a calmer international environment. China's re-emergence as a major power is the single most important geo-political trend of the early twenty-first century.