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(en) Rabble Rousers and Merry Pranksters - History of Anarchism in New Zealand - book review

Date Sat, 15 Dec 2007 11:04:46 +0200



A History of Anarchism in Aotearoa/New Zealand from the mid 1950s to the early
1980s ---- This 144 pages book is published by Katipo Books in conjunction with
Irrecuperable Press and the author is Toby Boraman. --- Rabble Rousers and Merry
Pranksters captures some of the imagination, the audacity, the laughs and the
wildness that animated many of the social movements of the sixties and seventies
in Aotearoa/New Zealand. --- During this time, particularly from the late
sixties to the early seventies, an astonishingly broad-based revolt occurred
throughout the country. Thousands of workers, Maori, Pacific people, women,
youth, lesbians, gays, students, environmentalists and others rebelled against
authority. Innovative new styles and anarchistic methods of political dissent
became popular.

A colourful and energetic bunch of anarchists occasionally played significant
roles in these struggles. Anarchists were prominent in the anti-nuclear,
anti-Vietnam War, anti-US military bases, commune, unemployed and peace
movements. Rabble Rousers and Merry Pranksters is a richly-detailed tale about a
much neglected anti-authoritarian leftist current in Aotearoa/New Zealand history.

Rabble Rousers and Merry Pranksters will interest not only anarchists and other
libertarian socialists, but also those just interested in what happened in the
sixties and seventies. The book includes a broad-ranging overview of the protest
movements and social context of the time. This background material is necessary
because little has been published about many aspects of the period, including
the Progressive Youth Movement, the strike waves and the underground press.

The book is a pioneering work. It represents the first major history of
anarchism and libertarian socialism in Aotearoa/New Zealand. It is primarily
based upon interviews and correspondence with participants in the libertarian
socialist scene. It also draws upon extensive research into unpublished
manuscripts, documents, magazines, leaflets and other ephemera written by
anti-authoritarians.

To capture a little of the distinctive and colourful political style of the
period, over 100 images are included in the book, including cartoons, posters
and leaflets.
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by Dimitri (MACG- perconal capacity) - Anarkismo Friday, Dec 14 2007, 10:12am
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