October 16, 2011

What to read at the revolution


Anthony Arnove is a literary agent and the author of Iraq: The Logic of Withdrawal; he’s also the co-author (with Howard Zinn) of Voices of a People’s History of the United States, and is a member of the International Socialist Organization, as well as a co-founder of Haymarket Books. Arnove is the kind of person who is alarmingly prompt when responding to e-mails, which means that he is the type of person we enjoy developing a correspondence with, no matter how hectic our days are. As you might guess, we are a curious sort at Melville House, so it should come as no surprise that we asked Arnove what books he would suggest someone read if s/he were interested in getting up-to-date with what is happening at the Occupy Wall Street protests, since Occupy LA posted their own “Occupy Reading List” last month, but it left us wanting. Arnove wrote, “Here is a sampling of some of the best books about the economy, worker’s control, and social movements that I would recommend for your readers (in no particular order).” So say what you will about socialists, but we love their ability to downplay rankings.



1. Ours to Master and to Own: Workers’ Control from the Commune to the Present, edited by Immanuel Ness and Dario Azzellinni (Haymarket Books)

2. Capitalism Hits the Fan: the Global Economic Meltdown and What to Do About It by Richard Wolff* (Olive Branch Press)

*see also the related film, Capitalism Hits The Fan:

3. Subterranean Fire: A History of Working-Class Radicalism in the United States by Sharon Smith (Haymarket Books)

4. Global Slump: The Economics and Politics of Crisis and Resistance by David McNally (PM Press)

5. Sin Patrón: Stories from Argentina’s Worker-Run Factories, edited by Lavaca, with a foreword by Naomi Klein and Avi Lewis* (Haymarket Books)

*see also the related film The Take:

6. The Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein (Picador)

7. Capital, Volume 1 by Karl Marx (Penguin, others)

8. The Retreat from Class: A New “True” Socialism by Ellen Meiksins Wood (Verso)

9. Against the Market: Political Economy, Market Socialism and the Marxist Critique by David McNally (Verso)

10. Live Working or Die Fighting: How the Working Class Went Global by Paul Mason (Haymarket)