Translating Anarchy

Translating Anarchy

The Anarchism of Occupy Wall Street

An insider's account of the anarchists who ignited Occupy Wall Street.


Translating Anarchy tells the story of the anti-capitalist anti-authoritarians of Occupy Wall Street who strategically communicated their revolutionary politics to the public in a way that was both accessible and revolutionary. By “translating” their ideas into everyday concepts like community empowerment and collective needs, these anarchists sparked the most dynamic American social movement in decades.


This is a remarkable book and, of all the "insider" stories of Occupy Wall Street (OWS), the most compelling. ~ Paul Buhle, author of Marxism in the United States, truthout

Translating Anarchy is an impressive example of movement analysis, one of the most important books about anarchism of its time, and a must read for anyone studying contemporary anarchism and its implications, challenges, and possibilities. ~ Gabriel Kuhn, editor of Gustav Landauer: Revolution and Other Writings and Erich Mühsam: Liberating Society from the State and Other Writings, Alpine Anarchist Productions

Bray's meticulous, rich insider account of Occupy Wall Street demonstrates the central influence of anarchism on its core militants, but refuses to shy away from drawing hard lessons from its limitations. Anarchism, he convincingly argues, must position itself as an everyday movement of the 'ordinary' folks who alone can change the world - this requires a positive, practical programme and message, self-reflective and accountable politics, solid organisation, and clear tactics and strategy. ~ Lucien van der Walt (Rhodes University), co-author of Black Flame: The Revolutionary Class Politics of Anarchism and Syndicalism

In Translating Anarchy Mark Bray provides unique insight into the inner workings and politics of OWS and its interactions with the press and the public. The book not only describes how OWS "strategically articulated our politics" to the press and public, but provides an inside narrative of key OWS events; delineates the strands of anarchist and other thought that contributed to its political orientation; and draws lessons regarding key but controversial OWS approaches to the role of demands, the process of consensus, violence and non-violence, and other critical questions for future radical organizing. Straightforward and non-academic but in fact scholarly and historically informed, it provides an often witty good read. It is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand the OWS phenomenon or who may ever interpret social movements for the public and the media. ~ Jeremy Brecher, author of Strike! and Save the Humans?

Mark Bray
Mark Bray Mark Bray is a political organizer and PhD Candidate who has been involved in the global justice movement, the anti-war movement, student an...
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