Magic Versus Neoliberalism: Riots Against Everywhere

Craig Willse
2013 Women's Studies Quarterly  
Each of these three books wrestles with how to produce political vision in a historical moment that has o en felt heavy with defeat. Wri en in the a ermath of the antiglobalization actions of the 1990s and early 2000s, but before the transnational emergence of uprisings at the close of 2010, each text o ers ways to re ect critically, and with hope, on the current sociopolitical moment and its immediate histories. Working through some of the limits of the texts, especially in terms of missed
more » ... rtunities to theorize the racial projects of capitalism, may also point to limits in our writing, thinking, and organizing with which we can and must grapple. In Capitalist Sorcery, Pignarre and Stengers draw inspiration for thinking about politics through magic from the work of pagan activist and writer Starhawk, which they address toward the close of their book. While Pignarre and Stengers's engagement with magic hovers at the level of analogy, the metaphor nonetheless helpfully reorients the question of what Marxist analysis might o er. For Pignarre and Stengers, to address capitalism as spellbinding provides an alternative to ideology critique. ey do not claim that capitalism has no ideology; far from it, Pignarre and Stengers argue that neoliberal capital derives great force from a mythmaking insistence on its own inevitability and unstoppability. In the wake of Reagan's and atcher's post-social interventions, to suggest that neoliberalism could be undone, or even simply pushed back, has been to open yourself to critiques of foolish, childish romanticism. "Get with the program" has been the response of ideologues (whom Pignarre and Stengers term "min-
doi:10.1353/wsq.2013.0003 fatcat:23pjpxkqobeotocrzodh7xqale