Saturday, 16 March 2013

Ken Knabb against the Leninists.

The Leninist-type “vanguard party,” so widely acclaimed at present, was one of the major reasons for the defeat of the classical workers movement. Consciously or not, by setting itself up as a separate, independent force, it prepares the way for its own “revolutionary” power over the people, as in the state-capitalist regimes of Russia, China, Cuba, etc. Any organization aiming to bring about the destruction of class society must begin by refusing to emulate this example of revolutionary “success.” A revolutionary organization must abolish commodity relations and hierarchy within itself. It must effect the direct fusion of critical theory and practical activity, precluding any possibility of petrification into ideology. Just as the councils will control and transform all aspects of liberated life, the revolutionary organization must embody a critique of all aspects of presently alienated life. At the revolutionary moment of the dissolution of social separation, it must dissolve itself as a separate power.

The last revolution in human prehistory will realize the unity of the rational and the passionate; the unity of work and play in the free construction of daily life; the game of the fulfillment of the desires of everyone: what Lautréamont called “poetry made by all, not just by one.”

Ode on the Absence of Real Poetry Here This Afternoon

— A Poem in Dialectical Prose —
 Read by Ken Knabb at an open poetry reading in Berkeley, 27 October 1970

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