Submitted by Jay on Tue, 25/02/2014 - 11:53am
Class War’s Iain Bone once described the London Anarchist Bookfair as the anarchists' Christmas - where people come together, meet up with old friends and enemies, and buy presents for ourselves and others.
It's true that anarchist bookfairs are a peculiar phenomenon, a strange cross of radical, anti-capitalist politics and blatant consumerism, but as an ever-proliferating event they are not easily dismissed.
Anarchist bookfairs have become a firmly established feature of radical diaries across the world. From humble beginnings in London some thirty odd years ago the bookfair idea has spread to cities across the globe, on almost every continent, including Australia, with Sydney holding its first in March 2014 while Melbourne plans its fourth for later in 2014.
The London Anarchist Bookfair now boasts 5,000 visitors, 100 stalls and 50 meetings in a single day, and other cities aren't far behind. The success of the idea is tangible. But why do so many people come to the bookfairs, while so few attend anarchist conferences and meetings?