Friday, January 06, 2006


I've been a subscriber to the Aut-Op-Sy discussion list and its SPOON forerunner for ages now but never got round to blogrolling it or drawing attention to it. Big apologies to everyone.

The site was set up by Franco Barchiesi and Steve Wright, with help from Angela Mitropoulos as "a forum in which to explore the changing nature of class composition and class struggle within the planetary work machine."

As the introduction explains:

"Most of the debate on class composition over the past forty years has occurred in and around the Italian revolutionary left. While much of the Italian discussion has been stimulated by that country's autonomist movement, members of other political tendencies -- for example, the anarchists and libertarians associated with the journal Collegamenti/Wobbly -- have also made notable contributions to this discussion. In Germany, important work has been carried out by comrades such as Karl-Heinz Roth, and members of the magazine Wildcat.

In the English-speaking world, however, only a fraction of this work has become available -- and even that in a selective fashion. Meanwhile, a number of writers in North America, Britain and elsewhere have begun to develop their own distinctive approach to the question of class composition and social conflict. We hope that AUT-OP-SY can be a place where these different approaches can be evaluated: not as some academic exercise of theory for theory's sake, but as a way of judging their usefulness to the further understanding and development of working class self-organisation."


"While the heart of this discussion list concerns the possibilities of working class self-organisation, it is clear that the questions raised above impinge upon a number of current debates which hold a wider interest. From the exploration of restructuring, 'post-fordism', and value theory, to that of gender relations, notions of difference, and the meaning of development, this list welcomes contributions which challenge and enrich understandings of contemporary class composition.

Beyond this, we offer AUT-OP-SY as a place for the documentation of autonomous struggle and organisation around the globe -- from the social centres in Italy, to the Zapatistas in Chiapas. To this end, we will be collaborating closely with the European Counter Network and similar collectives in order to further circulate information and debate about the initiatives of those involved in such struggles."

You can sign up for the list here.

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