ISBN : 9780190906320
In recent years "leaderless" social movements have proliferated around the globe, from North Africa and the Middle East to Europe, the Americas, and East Asia. Some of these movements have led to impressive gains: the toppling of authoritarian leaders, the furthering of progressive policy, and checks on repressive state forces. They have also been, at times, derided by journalists and political analysts as disorganized and ineffectual, or suppressed by disoriented and perplexed police forces and governments who fail to effectively engage them. Activists, too, struggle to harness the potential of these horizontal movements. Why have the movements, which address the needs and desires of so many, not been able to achieve lasting change and create a new, more democratic and just society? Some people assume that if only social movements could find new leaders they would return to their earlier glory. Where, they ask, are the new Martin Luther Kings, Rudi Dutschkes, and Stephen Bikos? With the rise of right-wing political parties in many countries, the question of how to organize democratically and effectively has become increasingly urgent. Although today's leaderless political organizations are not sufficient, a return to traditional, centralized forms of political leadership is neither desirable nor possible. Instead, as Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri argue, familiar roles must be reversed: leaders should be responsible for short-term, tactical action, but it is the multitude that must drive strategy. In other words, if these new social movements are to achieve meaningful revolution, they must invent effective modes of assembly and decision-making structures that rely on the broadest democratic base. Drawing on ideas developed through their well-known Empire trilogy, Hardt and Negri have produced, in Assembly, a timely proposal for how current large-scale horizontal movements can develop the capacities for political strategy and decision-making to effect lasting and democratic change. We have not yet seen what is possible when the multitude assembles.
Part I: The Leadership Problem
Chapter 1: Where Have All the Leaders Gone?
Chapter 2: Strategy and Tactics of the Centaur
Chapter 3: Contra Rousseau, or, Pour en Finir avec la Souverainete
Chapter 4: The Dark Mirror of Right-Wing Movements
Chapter 5: The Real Problem Lies Elsewhere
Part II: The Social Production of the Multitude
Chapter 6: How to Open Property to the Common
Chapter 7: We, Machinic Subjects
Chapter 8: Weber in Reverse
Chapter 9: Entrepreneurship of the Multitude
Part III: Financial Command and Neoliberal Governance
Chapter 10: Finance Captures Social Value
Chapter 11: Money Institutionalizes a Social Relation
Chapter 12: Neoliberal Administration Out of Joint
Part IV: New Prince
Chapter 13: Political Realism
Chapter 14: Impossible Reformism
Chapter 15: And Now What?
Chapter 16: Portolan