Dancin’ in the Streets!


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Anarchists, IWWs, Surrealists, Situationists & Provos in the 1960s as recorded in the pages of Rebel Worker & Heat Wave

Edited with introductions by Franklin Rosemont and Charles Radcliffe
Charles H. Kerr Publishing

Most books on the 1960s focus on large liberal organizations and reformist politics. This one is unabashedly devoted to the far left of the far left. The Rebel Worker was a mimeo’d magazine started by young members of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) in Chicago, 1964.

While square critics derided them as “the left wing of the Beat Generation,” The Rebel Worker and its sister journal Heatwave in London became well known for their highly original revolutionaryperspective, innovative social/cultural criticism, and uninhibited class-war humor. Rejecting traditional left dogma, and proudly affirming the influence of Bugs Bunny and the Incredible Hulk, these playful rebels against work expanded the critique of Capital into a critique of daily life and developed a truly radical theory and practice, rooted in poetry, provocation, blues, jazz and the pleasure principle. Active in strikes, free-speech fights and other tumults, they also introduced countless readers to writings by surrealists, situationists, IWWs, anarchists, libertarian Marxists, Provos, Japanese Zengakuren, etc.

Here for the first time in book-form are dozens of selections from both of these legendary journals, with introductions: Franklin Rosemont (editor of The Rebel Worker) and Charles Radcliffe (editor of Heatwave).

“Look here for links between the Beat Generation “Mimeo Revolution” and the later Underground Press, but also between traditional Marxist theory and the new “critique of everyday life” developed by an increasingly defiant and countercultural young left that made Martha and the Vandellas’ “Dancin’ in the Streets “its international anthem.”

–Paul Buhle

“The dreamkillers won’t have finished working over the 1960s until they flatten the soaring visions of that decade into petty quarrels between vanguardists and aspiring Democratic Party functionaries. They won’t be done until they turn the movement into one without humor, without poetry, and indeed almost without motion. But dreamkilling just got lots harder. This brilliant collection gives us back the audacity, imagination, energy, laughs, wildness and chance that animated freedom dreams that are as alive today as they were 40 years ago.”

–David Roediger


Additional information

Weight 22.7 oz
Dimensions 8.5 × 5.5 × 1 in

Paperback, Hardcover


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