Bookchin : A Critical Appraisal

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This is the first comprehensive overview of the work of Murray Bookchin, the left-libertarian social theorist and political ecologist who is widely regarded as the visionary precursor of anti-corporate politics.

Bookchin's writing spans fifty years and engages with a wide variety of issues: from ecology to urban planning, from environmental ethics to debates about radical democracy. Weaving insights from Hegel and Marx, Kropotkin and Mumford, Bookchin presents a critical theory whose central utopian message is 'things could be other than they are'.

This accessible introduction maps the evolution of Bookchin's project. It traces his controversial engagements with Marxism, anarchism, critical theory, postmodernism and eco-centric thought. It evaluates his attempt to develop a social ecology. Finally, it considers how his thinking relates to current debates in social theory and environmentalism, critical theory and philosophy, political ecology and urban theory.

Offering a clear account of Bookchin's key themes, this book provides a critical but sympathetic account of the strengths and weaknesses of Bookchin's writing.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 135 x 215 x 15.24mm | 317.51g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0745319645
  • 9780745319643
  • 1,469,139

Table of contents



Part One: Beginnings

1. Environments, Cities And Post Scarcity Worlds

Part Two: The Legacy Of Domination

2. Hierarchy, Domination, Nature: Bookchin's Historical Social Theory

3. Social Ecology As Modern Social Theory

4. Capitalism and Ecology

Part Three: The Legacy Of Freedom

5. Ethics And The Normative Grounds Of Critique

6. Urbanisation, Cities, Utopia

7. Citizens, Politics, Democracy

Part Four :Endings




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Review quote

'White brings his immense scholarship and acute analytical skills to bear in both bringing to life and critically situating Bookchin's vision in the context of contemporary thinking' -- Professor Ted Benton, Department of Sociology, University of Essex 'Offers an insightful, scholarly and balanced account of the intellectual journey and achievements of Murray Bookchin, one of the towering figures of modern radical political thought and action' -- Dr. John Barry, School of Politics, International Studies and Philosophy, Queen's University Belfast 'A sophisticated and considered work that exhibits a genuine rare critical engagement with the intricacies of Bookchin's thought' -- Professor Mike Smith, Queen's University, Ontario, Canada. 'An excellent book - brings to life Bookchin the man and his work for a new generation of readers' -- Professor Noel Castree, School of Environment and Development, Manchester University
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About Damian F. White

Damian White is Dean of Liberal Arts and Professor of Sociology in the Department of History, Philosophy and Social Science at The Rhode Island School of Design. He is the author of Bookchin: A Critical Appraisal (Pluto, 2008).
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