Readings for 11/6, 11/13

Next week we’re diving into some short stories by Jorge Luis Borges. Below you’ll find a PDF of the Collected Fictions translated by Andrew Hurley. The stories we’re reading are:

• “The Widow Ching—Pirate” (p. 12)

• “Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius” (p. 36)

• “Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote” (p. 47)

• “A Dialogue About Dialogue” (p. 149)

• “Borges and Myself” (p. 160)

That may seem like a lot, but these are all fairly short — all together, it’s only about 17 pages of reading.

In two weeks we’re back into The Unique and Its Property, this time starting with section 1.3 (“The Free”) and stopping at section 2.1. Later this month we’ll begin the second part of the text, where many of the juiciest bits are.

Until next time, friends…



activity for 10/23, reading for 10/30

In our ongoing experiment with different ways of using this reading group, next week we’ll be having a potluck and playing a game! Upon arriving we’ll each take a moment to write down a role, position, or persona (ideally one familiar to other anarchists) which will be randomly distributed amongst the group. Examples might include things like nihilist, syndicalist, activist, tankie, John Zerzan, or Guy Debord. We’ll then take turns acting out these positions in a playfully exaggerated manner and trying to guess who everybody is. We might also spend some time examining the different representations which get acted out and discussing our critiques of them or trying to tease out the assumptions and behaviors that make them tick. Think of it as study group charades. If this sounds kind of odd or confusing, it is intentionally so, as part of the idea is to experiment with making the rules up on the spot.

Please also bring some kind of food and/or drink to share —- vegan/veggie options are especially appreciated. Come ready to play and feast!

In two weeks (10/30) we’ll return to our reading of The Unique and Its Property, picking up where we left off with section 1.2.3 (“The Hierarchy”) and stopping at section 1.3. Remember Wolfi’s comments on the parodic intent of this section, as it is among the most controversial segments of the book when read at face value.

ALSO: As a supplement to our reading of Stirner over the next few months, some of us have endeavored to get together to recapture and elaborate on the discussions we have in the reading group by creating a sort of “audio companion” to the text; the idea being to record our conversations and provide a resource for those reading the text on their own. We will be doing these recordings in the days following our biweekly readings of the book and want the participants in them to change throughout to provide a variety of perspectives. If you’re interested in taking part, just say so at the reading group. You can listen to our first recorded conversation here:

Readings for October

Exciting news update! The study group will be structuring our readings for the next few months as follows:

  • A section of The Unique and Its Property
  • A fiction reading
  • A section of The Unique and Its Property
  • Wildcard

(The Unique is on The Anarchist Library here)

So for the rest of October we are reading:

  • 10/9: Son and Steel by Yukio Mishima [link to an okay pdf, someone let me know if there’s a better one]
  • 10/16: The Unique and Its Property,  start section 1.2 Human Beings of Ancient and Modern Times, stop just before section 1.2.3 The Hierarchy.
  • 10/23: Some reading on translation/reading
  • 10/30: The Unique and Its Property,  section 1.2.3 The Hierarchy, completing section 1.2, stop just before section 1.3 The Free.