Who's Afraid of the Black Blocs?
Anarchy in Action around the World
Paperback / softback
- Publish Date
- Sep 2014
- List Price
Add it to your shelf
Where to buy it
Faces masked, dressed in black, and forcefully attacking the symbols of capitalism, Black Blocs have been transformed into an anti-globalization media spectacle. But the popular image of the window-smashing thug hides a complex reality.
Francis Dupuis-Déri outlines the origin of this international phenomenon, its dynamics, and its goals, arguing that the use of violence always takes place in an ethical and strategic context.
Translated into English for the first time and completely revised and updated to include the most recent Black Bloc actions at protests in Greece, Germany, Canada, and England, and the Bloc’s role in the Occupy movement and the Quebec student strike, Who’s Afraid of the Black Blocs? lays out a comprehensive view of the Black Bloc tactic and locates it within the anarchist tradition of direct action.
About the authors
Francis Dupuis-Déri teaches political science at Université du Québec à Montréal and is the author of numerous books and articles about anarchism, including Who's Afraid of the Black Blocs? Anarchy in Action Around the World (Between the Lines, 2013). His father, Thomas Déri, is a former publisher, an editor and translator, co-founder of the Librairie du Québec bookstore in Paris, and former director of the Salon du livre book fair in Montreal.
Francis Dupuis-Déri's profile page
Lazer Lederhendler is a full-time freelance translator specializing in contemporary Québécois fiction and nonfiction. His work has earned him many distinctions in Canada and abroad, including multiple nominations for the Governor General’s Literary Award, which he won in 2008 for the translation of Nikolski by Nicolas Dickner. He is also the translator of Gaétan Soucy’s novel, The Immaculate Conception, which was a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and the Governor General’s Literary Award for French to English translation, and the winner of the Cole Foundation Prize for Translation awarded by the Quebec Writers’ Federation. Lazer Lederhendler lives in Montreal.
“A level-headed, carefully researched inquiry into a subject that reduces most pundits to foaming at the mouth.”
—CrimethInc. Writers’ Bloc
“Francis Dupuis-Déri’s discussion of Black Blocs is intimately well-informed, truly international in scope, and up-to-the-minute. He treats the complex issues surrounding the tactic with an admirable balance of sympathy and sobriety. This book is the ideal antidote to the misinformation spread by the establishment, its defenders, and its false critics.”
—Uri Gordon, author of Anarchy Alive!
“Wearing black to mask their identities, the Black Bloc fights injustice globally. Although little is known about these modern Zorros, this book critically reveals their origins and prospects. I heartily recommend it.”
—George Katsiaficas, author of The Subversion of Politics
“The richness, imaginativeness, and sheer learning of Francis Dupuis-Déri’s work is stimulating and impressive. The whole book turns on a fascinating blend of the rigorously analytical and the generously imaginative. It was high time that it should be translated into English, as this well-established anarchist classic will both delight and inform.”
—Andrej Grubacic, Professor of Anthropology and Social Change, California Institute of Integral Studies, and coauthor of Wobblies & Zapatistas
“Who’s Afraid of the Black Blocs? is a measured, critical, and persuasive defence of global protest actions. Against critics who dismiss these as purposeless or who treat illegalism as a distraction to the mainstream event, Dupuis-Déri highlights the effectiveness of the Black Blocs decision-making processes and the considered politics of its participants.”
—Ruth Kinna, professor of politics, history, and international relations, Loughborough University, UK, and author of Anarchism: A Beginner’s Guide