The Democracy Project: a History, a Crisis, a Movement by David Graeber – review

What&#8217s the 1st question that springs to thoughts when you believe about Occupy Wall Street? Where did it go? Was something in fact achieved? What went incorrect? These are not the concerns that David Graeber desires to answer in his new book on the protest and its ramifications. Graeber, an anthropologist and lifelong activist, was there from the beginning and helped give OWS its start in life in September 2011. He also helped coin the slogan &#8220We are the 99%&#8221, which did so significantly to brand the movement. Now, nearly two years on, Graeber wants to draw some of the wider lessons. He thinks the query that demands to be answered is: Why did it function?

This is not as crazy as it sounds. Graeber has two motives for believing that Occupy was a huge good results. The 1st is that so several folks showed up at all. Graeber, who is also an anarchist, is a veteran of actions, rallies and occupations whose participants can normally be counted in the tens, not the tens of thousands. Bloombergville, a forerunner of the occupation of Zuccotti Park, was a camp of 40 activists living in tents opposite City Hall in decrease Manhattan throughout the summer time of 2011. No a single noticed, which is what tends to occur with this kind of protest. The original occupation of Wall Street on 17 September drew a couple of thousand folks, which was regarded as a triumph. But within weeks the movement had spread to a lot more than 600 cities, and large crowds were assembling day-to-day in New York. Graeber writes of possessing to pinch himself as he watched thousands of men and women mimicking the hand gestures and rallying cries of activists who were more used to shouting at every single other across empty rooms.

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