The Murray Bookchin Reader

English language

Published Nov. 30, 1997

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3 stars (2 reviews)

This collection provides an overview of the thought of the foremost social theorist and political philosopher of the libertarian left today. Best known for introducing ecology as a concept relevant to radical political thought in the early 1960s, Murray Bookchin was the first to propose, in the innovative and coherent body of ideas that he has called "social ecology", that a liberatory society would also have to be an ecological one. His writings span five decades and encompass subject matter of remarkable breadth. Bookchin's writings on revolutionary philosophy, politics and history are far less known than the specific controversies that have surrounded him, but deserve far greater attention. Despite Bookchin's critical engagement with both Marxism and anarchism, his political philosophy, known as libertarian municipalism, draws on the best of both for the emancipatory tools to build a democratic, libertarian alternative. His nature philosophy is an organic outlook of generation, development, …

2 editions

Not the best introduction to Bookchin, but he is great

3 stars

(original em português → )

"The Murray Bookchin Reader" (1999; available free from the Anarchist Library) brings together articles written between the 1960s and 1990s by this immensely influential thinker and activist for the anarchist, ecological and "new left" movements in general. The collection attempts to summarize Bookchin's thinking.

One of the marks that Murray Bookchin (1921~2006) left was the revitalization, in the 1960s, of anarchism and decentralism as solid alternatives to capitalism, free from the traps of socialism. At the same time, he was also one of the pioneers in thinking of ecology as a fundamental element for change, foreseeing our ecological emergency.

It wasn't the most fluid reading. Some of the articles seemed dated and sometimes gave the impression of a patchwork quilt. In those moments, I wanted to read a book by him dedicated to a single theme, rather than a collection of brushstrokes on everything. …

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3 stars