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(en) Happy May Day from AK Press

From Charles Weigl <charles@akpress.org>
Date Thu, 29 Apr 2004 15:35:04 +0200 (CEST)


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"It may surprise some of our American citizens to learn that in this
country of 'free speech' there is no easier thing in the world than
to sentence persons to death for expressing their views." --August Spies
Everyone here at AK Press wishes you a happy May Day! We also wish that
more people in this country knew what International Workers' Day is all about.
The United States is one of the few nations that doesn't recognize the
holiday. Which is pretty weird considering that it was here that organized
labor first passed a resolution that "eight hours shall constitute a legal
day's work, from and after May 1, 1886." It was here that hundreds of
thousands of workers went on strike to win that eight-hour day. It was here,
in Chicago, that their victory was christened with
the blood of the Haymarket martyrs.

It's also here that the government has
organized a long campaign of enforced
amnesia about the true meaning of the
day. In 1894, President Cleveland
tried to bury the history of class
struggle by declaring the first Monday in
September to be "Labor Day," a tame,
patriotic version of the real thing. In
1958, Eisenhower added insult to injury
by making May 1st "Law Day"--a
twisted irony considering the hand-picked
jury and biased judge that
condemned innocent men to death in Chicago.

For a very readable history lesson, check out this
page from the Struggle collection:
http://www.struggle.ws/about/mayday.html.

For a broader perspective, head to
>
http://slash.autonomedia.org/article.pl?sid=02/05/02/1029240
for Peter Linebaugh's "The Incomplete, True, Authentic and
Wonderful History of May Day" (also in AK Press' forthcoming
book, SERPENTS IN THE GARDEN: LIASONS
WITH CULTURE & SEX, edited by Alexander Cockburn &
Jeffrey St. Clair--see below for more info).

Also check out your local Indymedia site for May Day
Events in your area.
Workers of the World, rock on!

**NEW & UPCOMING FROM AK**

Speaking of books from AK Press, we've been damn
busy the last few months.
Here's what's hot off the press:

For anyone who wants to know what nasty bits are
lurking in their food,
there's ANIMAL INGREDIENTS FROM A TO Z (Third
Edition), the E.G. Smith
Collective's bible for vegetarians, vegans, the
health conscious and caring
consumers. It's a comprehensive listing of animal
ingredients that's easy to
navigate with supplemental information on vegan
nutrition, food alternatives
and contact information for animal advocacy groups.
http://www.akpress.org/dosearch.php?itemid=4404

The Biotic Baking Brigade's recipe for the public
humiliation of public
officials, PIE ANY MEANS NECESSARY, outlines the
fine art of landing a
freshly-baked delicacy in the face of the
reactionary, pompous and otherwise
deserving. An intoxicating melange of history,
analysis, tactics and recipes
for this most edible of the political direct action
techniques!
http://www.akpress.org/dosearch.php?itemid=4405

Author Katya Komisaruk, perhaps the only person
admitted to Harvard Law
School while serving a five-year prison sentence,
serves up BEAT THE HEAT:
HOW TO HANDLE ENCOUNTERS WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT.
Covering everything from how
to read a search warrant to what to tell a judge to
get your sentence
reduced, this amazing book is like getting a
one-on-one coaching session
with your lawyerŠso you can learn what to do before
trouble's at your door.
http://www.akpress.org/dosearch.php?itemid=4388

Easily the greatest of hobo biographies, Jim Tully's
BEGGARS OF LIFE takes
us across the seamy underbelly of pre-WW1 America on
freight trains, and
inside hobo jungles and brothels, while narrowly
avoiding railroad bulls and
the wardens of order. "He writes keenly of what he
has observed keenly, and
his descriptions of long night rides on mail trains
and the death of
'Oklahoma Red' are little short of fascinating."
[New York Times]
http://www.akpress.org/dosearch.php?itemid=4389

Due out in the next few months:

LANGUAGE AND POLITICS, Noam Chomsky
An enormous chronological collection of over fifty
interviews conducted with
Chomsky from 1968 to the present.

SERPENTS IN THE GARDEN: LIASONS WITH CULTURE & SEX,
Alexander Cockburn &
Jeffrey St. Clair
The latest in the award-winning Counterpunch series.
An explosion of
voracious, opinionated and witty fireworks on the
unexpected intersections
of politics, art, music, architecture and sex.

ANARCHO-SYNDICALISM, Rudolph Rocker
The greatest introduction to Anarchism and anarchist
practice ever penned,
by one of its leading theoreticians.

OUT OF THE NIGHT, Jan Valtin
From double agent in the Nazis' Gestapo to Communist
Party official,
Valtin's spellbinding autobiography gives an
unflinching portrayal of the
internal machinations of both parties.

FREE WOMEN OF SPAIN, Martha Ackelsberg
A comprehensive study of the Spanish Revolution's
Mujeres Libres that
intertwines interviews with the women themselves and
analysis connecting
them to modern feminist movements.

THE VOLTAIRINE DE CLEYRE READER
An indispensable, fully annotated collection of the
works of this leading
intellectual, activist, speaker and writer who had a
tremendous impact on
the American anarchist, feminist and labor
movements.

AT WAR WITH ASIA, Noam Chomsky
A reprint of Chomsky's classic guide to
understanding both the past and
current logic of imperial force. More relevant than
ever!


**FRIENDS OF AK**

All that publishing, besides making eight-hour days
pretty uncommon here at
AK, costs a lot of money. We've put out around 20
books in the past year and
hope to do even more in the next 12 months. Friends
of AK Press is a way you
can directly help us realize these and many more
such projects. Friends
agree to pay a minimum of $20 per month into our AK
Press account (of
course, we have no objection to larger sums). All
money received goes
directly into our publishing projects.

As a Friend you would not only help keep the presses
rolling here at AK but
for the duration of your membership you'll receive,
as they appear, one free
copy of every AK Press title complete with free
shipping. That can mean
hundreds of dollars' worth of great books, DVDs and
CDs shipped for FREE to
each Friend of AK. And to sweeten the deal even
more, Friends of AK are
also entitled to a 10% discount on each and every
order of any item we
publish or distribute for the duration of their
membership.

To become a Friend of AK Press today go to our
website:
http://www.akpress.org/friends_bottom.php.

**AK WEBSITE**

Get ready. Our website will be getting a major
overhaul this summer, with
better searches, easier navigation and new features.
In the meantime,
www.akpress.org is still the place to go for the
most up-to-date news about
what we're doing, our newest items, and much more.
Check us out for May Day
stuff like:

Haymarket T-shirt
Wear your politics on your, uh, chestŠand let people
know what this day is
really about.
http://www.akpress.org/dosearch.php?itemid=3854

Anarcho-Syndicalist Flag
The classic version, in all its black & red glory.
http://www.akpress.org/dosearch.php?itemid=1205

AK Shoulder Bag
US made sweat-free luxury 'shoulder' bag. Or a poor
person's bicycle courier
bag. Room for a few hundred flyers and an entire May
Day picnic.
http://www.akpress.org/dosearch.php?itemid=4397

While you're at it, click on the AK Bookmobile link
(http://www.akpress.org/bookmobile_bottom.php)
to find out when we, or our distant comrades, will
be tabling in your part of the world. If you live in
the bay area, it's also the place to find a list of
all the music, film and
book-related events happening in the AK warehouse
here in Oakland. Stop by and meet us in the flesh!

Thanks for your support,

The AK Press Collective


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