Voyou Désœuvré

Damn it, sometimes I fear I’m on the wrong side of the Atlantic. I’ve just noticed I missed an awesome-sounding conference about Mao, and two talks by eponymous Walter Benjamin scholar, Andrew Benjamin. Not to mention living on this continent means I can all too easily end up in a city where the temperature drops below 0° Fahrenheit (something I had, in my metric-system innocence, assumed was impossible).

That being said, there are advantages. I was in Chicago for a conference which was about as good as a non-Maoist conference could be expected to be; great papers on the 1844 Manuscripts and Machiavelli, among others. I ended up getting in a drunken argument when someone else mentioned Katie Price, leading me to launch into an explanation of how my paper proved Jordan’s revolutionary credentials; that’s what you want from a conference. I met up with Moll, who showed me her hipster neighborhood and pointed me in the direction of a great alternative zine/comics (or, as I suspect they would spell it, comix) shop. They had a copy of Prairie Fire for sale! The revolution is surely just round the corner. I didn’t buy it though, as I already have a copy; I did pick up a pamphlet called “Trashing the Neoliberal City,”  about anti-gentrification and pro-public-space actions in Chicago.


  1. jOHN, 9:08 am, February 18, 2007


    The Mao conf went off really well. We want to write some of it up, but keep on getting distracted reading blogs like yours…

    See here and here for some of the preliminaries, more detailed than what is on our official Gold sites.

    And Andrew will do it all again later in the year as he is a visiting prof with ccs for the next two years or so.

    Red Salute


    “A revolution is not a dinner party, or writing an essay, or painting a
    picture, or doing embroidery; it cannot be so refined, so leisurely and
    gentle, so temperate, kind, courteous, restrained and magnanimous. A
    revolution is an insurrection, an act of violence by which one class
    overthrows another.”

    .”Report on an Investigation of the Peasant
    Movement in Hunan” (March 1927), Selected Works, Vol. I, p. 28.* The
    text here is verbatim from the second edition of “Quotations from
    Chairman Mao Tse-tung”, printed in Peking in 1967

  2. rachel, 4:19 pm, February 18, 2007

    Tim! Tim! What do you think of this

  3. rachel, 4:20 pm, February 18, 2007

    bah! html was wrong.

  4. voyou, 6:02 pm, February 18, 2007

    Ha! That’s brilliant. I suppose it’s too much to hope that the next set of paparazzi pictures will show Britney reading the SCUM Manifesto, but I’m nothing if not optimistic. Both you and infinite thought are clearly more on the ball than I am.

  5. rachel, 6:52 pm, February 19, 2007

    Britney Spears as leader of militant political lesbian group would indeed be wonderful.

  6. voyou, 11:59 pm, February 19, 2007

    And thank for the links, John. There’s a possible connection to the exciting Britney news in this article on anti-sex French Maoists.

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