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SCHWARZ, A.G., Tasos SAGRIS and Void Network. We Are an Image From the Future : The Greek Revolt of December 2008
Article mis en ligne le 4 décembre 2010

par r-c.
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AK Press, 2010. 386 pages. ISBN 9781849350198

On December 18, 2008, 15-year-old anarchist Alexis Grigoropoulos was murdered in cold blood by an Athens police officer, not far from the Exarchia squat. What followed were weeks of intense rioting, attacks on police and high-end stores, and over a billion dollars in damages.

Around the world people were inspired by the intense fightback, but the explanation and background to what enabled these protests, what made them possible, remained beyond the scope of most reports, including sympathetic ones.

We Are An Image From the Future goes a long way to filling this info-gap, explaining how the revolt grew out of thirty years of developing anarchist practice. What’s more, this book places Greek anarchism in - and against - the context of the student movement, prisoners’ struggles, class conflict, the radical left, and Greek society in general.

The book consists of dozens of interviews, including with :

Anarchists and antiauthoritarians from Athens, Thessaloniki, Patras, and several villages and islands.

Participants in the occupations of the Polytechnic University, and Athens School of Economics, the Athens Law University, the Genderal Confederation of Greek Workers, the office of the newspaper editors’ union, the Theater School in Thessaloniki, the National Opera Hall in Athens.

Friends of Alexis Grigoropoulos and students of Exarchia high school.

The Exarchia resident who filmed the murder of Alexis.

The photojournalist fired for taking a picture of a cop drawing his gun a day after the murder of Alexis.

A member of the antiauthoritarian base union of Konstantina Kuneva, a precarious immigrant worker brutally attacked in December for her syndicalist activities.

Students, leftists, nonaffiliated people, conservative family members of anarchists, and random people in the street.

A refugee organizing support for other refugees, and several immigrants who participated in the revolt.

People who have been participating in the struggles since the ’70s and people who came out into the streets for the first time in December.

Owners of luxury stores smashed by anarchists (including one interview in which an anarchist who had helped smash the store came back impersonating a journalist from a major international newspaper).

Independent media activists and people involved in counterinformation.

People involved in supporting prisoners.

Some people involved in the occupation of the national television station.

Anarchists organizing solidarity actions in other countries.

What causes a city, then a whole country, to explode ? How did on
e neighborhood’s outrage over the tragic death of one teenager transform itself into a generalized insurrection against State and capital, paralyzing an entire nation for a month ?

This is a book about the murder of fifteen-year-old Alexis Grigoropoulos, killed by the police in the Exarchia neighborhood of Athens on December 6th, 2008, and of the revolution in the streets that followed, bringing business as usual in Greece to a screeching, burning halt for three marvelous weeks, and putting the fear of history back into the bureaucrats of Fortress Europe and beyond.

We Are an Image From the Future delves into the December insurrection and its aftermath through interviews with those who witnessed and participated in it, alongside the communiqués and texts that circulated through the networks of revolt. It provides the on-the-ground facts needed to understand these historic events, and also dispels the myths activists outside of Greece have constructed around them. What emerges is not just the intensity of the riots, but the stories of organizing and solidarity, the questions of strategy and tactics : a desperately needed examination of the fabric of the Greek movements that made December possible


"This dazzling collection is not a book about the great insurrection of 2008-it is a living piece of it that can become a part of us, and through us, it opens the prospect of a universe we might never otherwise have imagined possible. Future historians may well conclude that the Revolution finally began in 2008. If they do, this book will have played a crucial role in that realization."

— David Graeber, author of Direct Action : An Ethnography

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