Exodus

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= constructive political concept used by the new participatory and p2p-based social movements, and distinct from "revolution" as a goal


Description

David Graeber, in: Fragments of an Anarchist Anthropology:

"“The theory of exodus proposes that the most effective way of opposing capitalism and the liberal state is not through direct confrontation but by means of what Paolo Virno has called ‘engaged withdrawal,’ mass defection by those wishing to create new forms of community.

One need only glance at the historical record to confirm that most successful forms of popular resistance have taken precisely this form. They have not involved challenging power head on (this usually leads to being slaughtered, or if not, turning into some—often even uglier—variant of the very thing one first challenged) but from one or another strategy of slipping away from its grasp, from flight, desertion, the founding of new communities.” (60-61)


Discussion

Paolo Virno, an excerpt from this great interview:


HP: For you, what is the meaning of the word revolution today?

"PV: Perhaps we could do without the word revolution because this model was that of taking power and constructing a new State. It may be better to speak of exodus. I think that the model of exodus is a rich one. Exodus means, more than taking power or subduing it, exiting. Exiting means constituting a distinct context, new experiences of non-representative democracy, new modes of production. It offers a third possibility, and I am not speaking – please! – of the "Third way" but rather of a politics of the extinction of the State being positively constructive, opposing the word republic to the word State. This means constructing a nonstatal republic with a movement that emerges more from exodus and positive experiments than from revolutions in the classical sense. The latter were an intelligent activity for many generations, but lead to the idea of constructing a new State. The point is no longer a monopoly over decision, which is to say Multitude: many, plurality." (http://www.generation-online.org/p/fpvirno8.htm)

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