Why I’m Returning my Copy of The Anarchist Turn


In 2011, Simon Critchley, Chiara Bottici, and Jacob Blumenfeld organized a conference entitled “The Anarchist Turn” at the New School for Social Research. Naturally, the conference was exciting news for anarchist scholars. I was originally attracted to the conference because it seemed to toy with post-anarchist ideas in a way that had mass appeal. In other words, it seemed to grant further legitimacy to the specific forms of inquiry that have been generating incredible innovations in anarchist thinking over the last two decades. It was all the more exciting because the conference seemed to attract highly respected public intellectuals such as Judith Butler, Alberto Toscano, Todd May, Miguel Abensour, among others. It seemed to me that these highly respected scholars had themselves made a turn toward thinking through and renewing the anarchist tradition; I call this a “turn” because they had not previously made sustained and lasting contributions in the field…

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  1. Exile said:

    The real story behind the conflict can be found here, on Duane Rouselle’s Academia.edu page


    The Anarchist Turn
    by Duane Rousselle

    More Info: “Edited by Jacob Blumenfeld, Chiara Bottici, Simon Critchley with Duane Rousselle Pluto Press, 2013 (special book issue of Anarchist Developments in Cultural Studies)”

    That is, Duane was trying to piggyback off of Jake/Chiara/Simon’s project and claim some of the prestige for himself and for ADCS. Duane clearly admits to this.

    Again, it does not seem Duane was invited to do editing, but rather he interposed himself, “volunteered” to do so. Most of the editing was done in-house, by New School students and faculty.

    From Duane and Jacob’s communication, it seems clear that the belief was that:

    * Pluto Press would publish a book entitled “The Anarchist Turn”
    * ADCS would publish an open access of the conference proceedings.

    That was the initial presumption, not that the *book* would have ADCS and Duane’s name on it.

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