Monday, December 18, 2006
The "Other Campaign" and the Left: Reclaiming an Alternative by Gustavo Esteva and Translated by Holly Yasui
The Zapatistas have created an alternative way - one of a political force, instead a political party, which might transform social and political reality from the roots and which could enclose and corner those who have the people enclosed and cornered, to surround and control the constituted powers to the point that it might become possible to replace them in a new truly democratic regime.
The Zapatistas know that their current struggle has to take place within the framework of the Mexican nation-state. They don't live on Mars. But they have escaped the trap of the perverse illusion that the State is the only generalized political reality, the privileged form of political activity. They have recuperated the sense of politics as a commitment to the common good, which is expressed in common sense, the sense that the community has. They have snatched from the State the function of defining the good life, which it transferred to the market; they have reclaimed it for civil society, for the people. Far from seeing the State as the only or privileged horizon, they perceive it as a set of structures of domination that should be marginalized and dissolved.
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