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Preoccupying: Alan Moore

Interviews

OT: What does anarchism offer in the way of a solution to these problems?

AM: With its inherent rejection of leaders and hierarchy, anarchy is antithetical to all imposed ideas of status. Neolithic hunter-gatherer societies would mock or ostracise those members of the tribe who seemed intent on engineering a more privileged position for themselves, a practice still maintained in some existing aboriginal communities, perhaps as an acknowledgement of the tremendous social instability that seems to follow at the heels of inequality.

Preoccupying: Alan Moore

The Occupied Times
October 22, 2012

Alan Moore is a writer and anarchist, and the author of Watchmen and V for Vendetta. Having written for us back in January, Moore returns to the OT to discuss anarchy, war, and the roots of the modern education system.

OT: Having previously suggested that many of the problems humanity faces flow from a tiny number of “leaders” and the current political and economic system they maintain, what do you identify as the main problems in the political and commercial makeup of our society?

AM: I think that with the inevitable erosion of those false certainties which shored up the reality of previous generations, we have seen a subsequent collapse in our sense of societal significance and, not entirely unconnected, in our sense of personal identity. We are no longer certain what the social structures we inhabit mean, and therefore cannot gauge our own value or meaning in relation to those structures. Lacking previously-existing templates such as blind patriotism or religion, it would seem that many people mistake status for significance, building their sense of self on what they earn or on how many people know of their existence. This appears to lead to a fragmented and anxiety-fuelled personality as the most readily-adopted option, which it may be imagined is a desirable condition for those seeking to herd large populations in accordance with their own often-depraved agendas.

OT: What does anarchism offer in the way of a solution to these problems?

AM: With its inherent rejection of leaders and hierarchy, anarchy is antithetical to all imposed ideas of status. Neolithic hunter-gatherer societies would mock or ostracise those members of the tribe who seemed intent on engineering a more privileged position for themselves, a practice still maintained in some existing aboriginal communities, perhaps as an acknowledgement of the tremendous social instability that seems to follow at the heels of inequality. In anarchy’s insistence on no leaders is the implication that each man or woman takes on the responsibility of being their own master and commander; the pursuit of these demanding duties being the sole means by which meaningful individual freedom is attained. In repositioning ourselves back at the centre of our own unique subjective cosmos, we may find that our dilemmas with identity and meaning are those born of hierarchical societies. As human beings making our own peace with this extraordinary universe, we could make possible the genuine collaboration between self-determined and splendidly various personalities that I believe must be the basis for all truly viable and equally-entitled cultures.

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