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Title: Rejecting ‘all the faces of subjugation’: Daniel Guerin on direct democracy, self-management and individual autonomy
Authors: Berry, David
Issue Date: 2019
Publisher: © Taylor & Francis
Citation: BERRY, D., 2019. Rejecting ‘all the faces of subjugation’: Daniel Guerin on direct democracy, self-management and individual autonomy. Journal of Political Ideologies, doi:10.1080/13569317.2019.1633102.
Abstract: This article examines the ideas of French writer and revolutionary Daniel Guerin (1904-88), focussing on his conception of democracy. It argues that Guerin’s thinking developed from the ‘macro-social’ to the ‘micro-social’ as his ideological perspective changed. In the 1940s and 50s, Guerin’s unorthodox Marxist approach to the historiography of the French Revolution and his adoption of a Kropotkinian emphasis on the grassroots democracy of the sans-culotte movement led him to see the Revolution as representing the birth of a ‘new type of democracy’. Some form of direct democracy was the only structure which was compatible with what he saw as true, essentially libertarian socialism. In the 1950s and 60s, these conclusions led him to shift the focus of his research onto the history of anarchism and of worker self-management, anarchism’s most important contribution to socialist and democratic thought. Democracy in the workplace, he argued, was the essential corollary of the abolition of private property and the socialisation of the economy. Finally, in the 1960s and 70s, partly because of his own struggles with heteronormativity and having discovered Stirner, he focussed on disalienation and personal autonomy. Each of these three levels of liberation was seen as a precondition of an authentic socialist democracy.
Description: This paper is closed access until 4 January 2021.
Version: Accepted for publication
DOI: 10.1080/13569317.2019.1633102
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/27694
Publisher Link: https://doi.org/10.1080/13569317.2019.1633102
ISSN: 1356-9317
Appears in Collections:Closed Access (Politics and International Studies)

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