The Barbarian Review is a collection of thoughts written down by various foreign people in Athens: a few persons passing through a brief period of time, in a very special city.
It is no surprise that we have chosen to write in English, to better communicate the experience we have of being in, but not of, the Greek radical milieu, and it is to be hoped that this will be as rewarding for the Greek and non-Greek to read, as it has been for us to collect and write down our views.
What confirmed our previous analysis was nothing more than the development of world-history itself. So last issue we wrote that new revolts are taking shape for a variety of reasons. Foremost, that the world is becoming philosophical, and philosophically, deaths spark riots, because the fundamental issue at hand is the demand that life and death be restored to meaning, against this system that can only propagate its own nothingness. And that the environment, equally ignored by Marxism and Liberalism, is becoming a new terrain of struggle (and here we can avoid putting our transcendental interpretation on an event, as Occupy Gezi doesn’t cease to concern the trees in the park, which has enough meaning unto itself, in this world of concrete). Also that the economic interpretation of the world, not merely the reigning Liberalism, but also the faded oppositional version contained in Marxism, was happily trashed by the favela youths of Brazil. All these recent riots saw the same uncategorisable social elements uniting in their desire for revolt, so here the famous analysis of Bakunin is once again confirmed. And as for the growing despotism of this dying world, it too is only all the more confirmed by events in Greece and in the growing European far-right. Marxism, because of its economism, misses the importance of liberty, and so the important developments of wikileaks, and recently of Snowden’s revelations about tyrannical US behavior, can only be rescued from today’s aging reformism through Anarchy and its unaltered committment to basic human dignity; just as a new uprising can be the only practical force working for a revolution that simultaneously attacks both fascism and the logic of the neoliberal-parliamentary system with which it is inevitably intertwined.
Nothing made us more pleased than the warm reaction our work received in the Greek movement, with the physical copies all being taken from the various squats around Athens (and around the world). But rather than making us complacent, this has only encouraged us further onwards, to ever more barbarism. In that vein, in this issue we have many more contributors, and yet the initial energy has in no way stopped or been diverted, but simply augmented.
Last issue was written in the heat after the Villa Amalias eviction; this one in the fall when Fyssas was murdered. Barbarism is most certainly arriving, an epoch of history begins to decay: the question is, in what sense? Shall we have a positive barbarism, which we endeavor to elaborate here, a leap upward over the abyss into revolution; or rather, a relapse into a very imaginable barbarism, in the pejorative sense of the term? Our whole bet is staked upon the former, if only because the latter seems so close at hand.