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About John Zerzan
His five major books are "Elements of Refusal" (1988), "Future Primitive and Other Essays" (1994), "Running on Emptiness" (2002), "Against Civilization: Readings and Reflections" (2005) and "Twilight of the Machines" (2008).
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The American anarchist, primitivist philosopher, and author John Zerzan critiques agriculture-based civilization as inherently oppressive and advocates drawing upon the life of hunter-gatherers as an inspiration for what free society should look like. Subjects of his criticism include domestication, language, symbolic thought, and the concept of time.
This book includes sixteen essays ranging from the beginning of civilization to today’s general crisis. Zerzan provides a critical perspective about civilization.
A People’s History of Civilization includes chapters about:
The City and its Inmates
War Enters the Picture
The Bronze Age
The Axial Age
The Crisis of Late Antiquity
Revolt and Heresy
Modernity Takes Charge
Who Killed Ned Ludd
Industrialism and Resistance
Civilization’s Pathological Endgame
In recent years, John Zerzan, co-editor of Black and Green Review, has successfully toured Europe to speak from his primitivist perspective regarding contemporary civilization. Zerzan calls Eugene, Oregon
“John Zerzan can now credibly claim the honor of being America’s most famous anarchist. His writing is sharp, uncompromising, and tenacious.”—Derrick Jensen, Utne Reader
The mentor of the green anarchist and neo-primitive movements is back with his first book in six years, confronting civilization, mass society, and modernity and technoculture—both the history of its developing crisis and the possibilities for its human and humane solutions.
As John Zerzan writes, “These dire times may yet reveal invigorating new vistas of thought and action. When everything is at stake, all must be confronted and superseded. At this moment, there is the distinct possibility of doing just that.”
Previous works from John Zerzan include Elements of Refusal, Future Primitive, Against Civilization, Running on Emptiness, and Questioning Technology. He has also contributed to Apocalypse Culture, Telos, and Fifth Estate. An Oregonian with degrees from Stanford University and San Francisco State University, he is an editor of Green Anarchy magazine. Read more at JohnZerzan.net.
“Read it and you will never think of civilization in the same way again.”—Kirkpatrick Sale
This anthology about "the pathology of civilization" offers insight into how progress and technology have led to emptiness and alienation.
"Zerzan's writing is sharp, uncompromising, and tenacious." — Derrick Jensen
"John Zerzan's importance does not only consist in his brilliant intelligence, his absolute clearness of analysis and his unequalled dialectical synthesis that clarifies even the most complicated questions, but also in the humanity that fills his thoughts of resistance. Future Primitive Revisited is one more precious gift for us all."—Enrico Manicardi, author of Liberi dalla Civiltá (Free from Civilization)
"Anyone who travels with his eyes open understands the sense of much of what you have written, and the longer I live the greater my contempt for the opportunists who run governments and dictate our lives with technology."—Paul Theroux
"Of course we should go primitive. This doesn't mean abandoning material needs, tools, or skills, but ending our obsession with such concerns. Declaring for community, our true origin: personal autonomy, trust, mutual support in pursuit of all the joys and troubles of life. Society was a trap—massive, demanding, impersonal and debilitating from day one. So hurry back to the community, friends, and welcome all the consequences of such an orientation. The reasons for fear and despair will only multiply if we remain in this brutal and dangerous state of civilization."—Blok 45 publishing, Belgrade
As our society is stricken with repeated technological disasters, and the apocalyptic problems that go with them, the "neo-primitivist" essays of John Zerzan seem more relevant than ever.
"Future Primitive," the core innovative essay of Future Primitive Revisited, has been out of print for years. This new edition is updated with never-before-printed essays that speak to a youthful political movement and influential writers such as Derrick Jensen and Paul Theroux.
An active participant in the contemporary anarchist resurgence, John Zerzan has been an invited speaker at both radical and conventional events on several continents. His weekly Anarchy Radio broadcast streams live on KWVA radio.
John Zerzan, anarcho-primitivist philosopher, ideological friend to Ted Kaczynski, and mentor to the anti-Globalist anarchists who set the world aflame in Seattle and Europe, is back with Running on Emptiness: The Pathology of Civilization.
Author of Elements of Refusal, Questioning Technology, Future Primitive and Other Essays, and the editor of Against Civilization: Readings and Reflections, Zerzan’s anti-technology writings are widely considered the most radical tonic to the crisis of our time.
The infamous eco-anarchist John Zerzan whose books have resulted in recent interviews by Vice and Believer magazines, checks in with further provocative articles about the chaotic results of civilization and technology.
Says novelist Lang Gore in his introduction:
"The present collection of essays continues the overarching thrust of John's scholarship, unveiling the post-apocalyptic nature of our times by noting the apocalypse was yesterday, several thousand years ago, to be precise, and that nothing produced by civilization can ever redeem the systematic attempt it has undertaken these (very) few millennia to destroy or alienate any human connection with the earth.
"In fact, when civilized Europeans imposed themselves everywhere on Earth, they created a terminal crisis for themselves by their very contact with indigenous societies. Suddenly, those with eyes to see and ears to hear could recognize that patriarchy, property and authority, and certainly slavery, were neither necessary nor desirable, let alone determined by 'human nature.'"