🔴 Condition - Good 🔴

With remarkable clarity, Peter Harrison reveals how the assumed escape from 'savagery' that the Enlightenment promised was ever only the transformation of humans into commodities freely available in a market: independence and autonomy being replaced by dependence and drudgery. His interpretation of the lifestyles of peoples who lived both before the rise of the State and in societies that still live independently of State administration is both original and non-patronizing. Within this framework is developed a convincing challenge to the orthodoxy that the feud in pre-State societies was a means of social control, and this leads into a radical re-evaluation of violence in non-State societies. Inspired by the profound critiques of capitalism posed by Indigenous perspectives, it also serves to chronicle the left’s persistent inability to provide a theory that does not ultimately align itself with the paternalist and controlling ethos at the core of Enlightenment, progressivist, and expansionist values.


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