Sunday, January 11, 2009

Direct Action: An Ethnography by David Graeber (forthcoming 2009)

David Graeber was kind enough to pass along the rough manuscript of his upcoming behemoth of an ethnography on direct action activism and the alternative globalization 'movement'-- soon to be published by AK Press. In the midst of ripping into academic marxists and calling Hakim Bey "an insane Ismaili poet with an erotic obsession with young boys," the controversial anthropologist posits this gem:
So what do police actually do? If one goes just in terms of how police spend the bulk of their time, one can only conclude that we are dealing with a group of armed, lower-echelon government administrators, trained in the scientific application of physical force or the threat of physical force to aid in the resolution of administrative problems. Police are bureaucrats with guns. (Graeber 2009, 305)

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