Desert
theanarchistlibrary.org
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Anonymous Desert 2011 A German language translation of Desert can be found here: https://anarchistischebibliothek.org/library/anonym-desert, and a Greek...

So given the meming around this book over at raddle.me, I thought I would give it a re-read (I vaguely remember skimming through it before some years back).

I think it is quite prescient in the sense that when it was written in 2011 when there was a much lower general level of “climate catastrophe anxiety” and people were still more concerned with the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. So reading it now it feels very current, despite being 10 years old.

As many books, it starts out with some worth-while observations that the author probably felt strongly about. Basically it cautions about being optimistic for the sole purpose of keeping some sort of climate movement going, when all the scientific data points to the fact that it already is much worse than people realize (remember this was written in 2011).

It then gives a good but a bit doom and gloom overview about the scientific state of the art knowledge in regards to the climate catastrophe (nothing really new for the 2021 reader).

The middle part of the book goes onto some interesting but largely quaint tangents: A very optimistic look on possible roads to anarchy in Africa, some observations on how the military-industrial complex has analyzed the future developments and some (mild) anti-civ propaganda.

Basically the book starts out strong (at least for the 2011ish reader) and then slowly fizzles out on various largely unrelated thoughts. This cumulates in the end where it talks about the “anarchists behind the walls”. This is basically the somewhat outdated “Fortress Europe” view that things will more or less continue as they are in the rich western world and how anarchists should deal with living in home states hostile to them. Basically this part says more about the author him/her self then containing any relevant new insights.

All in all, It felt a bit boring in the end and I doubt most people that are currently hyping this book read more then the first few chapters :) But give it a read if you have time.

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