Spring/Summer Wandering 2014


AngryWorkersWorld – Wandering Spring/Summer 2014

Dear Friends and Comrades,

We’ve got itchy feet and we’d like to spend a weekend in your town/city sometime this spring/summer!

The idea would be to link up with other like-minded groups and individuals so that we can:

a) Discuss the general situation of the crisis so far and how it is playing out in the UK and internationally. We’d give a short presentation of our assessment of things as well as what our political position is regarding the question of political organisation and the concept of class composition and workers’ enquiry [1]. We’d also like to share our experiences of our attempts at an inquiry into the logistics sector in west London [2].

b) In order to get a better picture of what is happening across the UK, we’d want to have a systematic conversation about your local situation. How is the crisis playing out in your area according to your experiences – as workers, carers, ‘activists’? What were important local struggles, what worked, what didn’t? We’ve come up with a list of questions to help frame the discussion. [3]

c) We’d like to see if it’s possible for us to meet more regularly in a bigger UK-wide circle. We’d like to establish an ongoing discussion and work process. One idea could be to produce a twice yearly, collectively written report about the crisis in the UK, as well as class struggle developments, for the international debate especially. Another idea would be regular pamphlets looking in more detail into recent struggles, their potentials and limitations – for circulation amongst active workers. In general we hope that a circle develops which comments on each others initiatives, leaflets etc., and might be able to coordinate common interventions. Depending on how these meetings across the UK go, we were thinking then to have a follow-up meeting in late summer for those people we’ve met over the spring/summer that are interested in further collaboration.

To get through all this, we think we’d need a day-long meeting so that we have enough time and space to have a proper discussion. A slightly longer meeting over one or two days would allow us a chance to have a more relaxed discussion where we could get to know each other better.


Politically we are close to comrades in India (Kamunist Kranti) [4], the wildcat collective in Germany [5], feminist fightback in London [6] and Mouvement Communiste in France [7]. We are a small collective, currently concentrating on the logistics sector in west London. We also have fortnightly meetings about different aspects of the global crisis, with the aim of building some kind of practical collective practice. So far we’ve had meetings, amongst other things, about the class and gender debate with a focus on sexual violence, the fascist threat in Greece, an analysis of the uprising in Egypt, the automobile sector and the nature of struggles globally, strike support and what solidarity could look like etc. We’ve also published two editions of a workers newspaper, with hopes to write a third one specifically for people working in the warehouses around west London. [8]

We don’t expect that we have to agree on everything from the get-go but we assume the following as a common ground for future collaboration:

1. Starting from a position of workers’ self-organisation. We are already ‘forced together’ as workers by the social production process e.g. through daily interactions at work or other social places (job training, college courses, birth prep classes). We need to turn this already existing ‘enforced collectivity and co-operation’ into our organisation of struggle for a better life.

2. People say that work has been ‘de-skilled’, which hides the fact that workers nowadays have to have a larger social knowledge to do their tasks: it is expected that people know how to use computers, are comfortable with and can use technology with little training, speak more than one language, can communicate well with others, can multi-task etc. Exactly because labour is interchangeable, nothing ties workers to ‘their’ labour, thus meaning that there is little to ‘defend’ apart from a wage. This brings about an opportunity to fight for the abolition of work and the abolition of the social division of labour. This is the precondition to get rid of gender and racial hierarchies and to question state power.

3. We follow an Operaist approach that sees the starting point of the overthrow of capital as looking at the complex composition of the working class. Once we understand class as being composed by gender, status, places of origins, qualifications etc. we can start asking about historically changing forms and contents of struggles. Questions concerning migration, waged work and reproductive work, ‘self-employment’ etc. enter the focus of attention. Such a notion of class is never assuming, but always asks for inquiry. This then requires practical engagement – there isn’t any other form of verification. This is what we are attempting out west.

4. One of the questions we’d like to discuss concerns the working class’s response to the crisis attack: either people are affected ‘individually’ by the cuts (bedroom tax) where the structural basis for collective resistance is too thin (so far campaigns weren’t able to create this ‘collectivity’, the ‘riots’ could be repressed) or workers accept the sectorial boundaries set by state and labour law (NHS, London Underground); they have a collective response, but the material basis has been undermined over the years, they can easily be singled out as ‘self-interested’; so what exists between this ‘individual situation’ as victims of the cuts and the ‘undermined islands of former strength’? Here we have to look at both (or rather the interplay of) the actual existence of working class mobility (precarious workers, outsourced workers) which might become a bridge element, and new forms of ‘political class organisation’ (square occupations, inter-professional assemblies), which can help to break existing boundaries. Organisational work has to relate to this gap and the dynamics between ‘proletarian existence’ and ‘productive power’ within the class to develop a strategic response, rather than ‘imagining campaigns’ or limiting itself to formal networking.

We don’t want to build an organisation we have to ‘defend’; but we’d love some collaboration, a commitment towards a joint-work process, a sharing, discussion and critique of each others work, on open and outwards-looking group of people that don’t rely on one or two ‘stars’ or knowledge- and contact-gatekeepers.

We will be in Glasgow/Edinburgh on 12/13th of April and in Bristol on the 27th of April. Let us know if you’re interested in meeting us there or in your city…

some angryworkers



More information can be found here: https://libcom.org/blog/angry-workers-world-19062013

More information here: http://www.libcom.org/blog/invitation-workers-inquiry-logistics-warehouse-london-04092013






[8] For more information about our past meetings and copies of our newspaper, check out the AngryWorkersoftheWorld website. https://angryworkersworld.wordpress.com/