A Critique of Ally Politics
This zine is a reprint of an article that originally appeared in the anarchist magazine “Rolling Thunder” and that was subsequently republished in the anthology “Taking Sides: Revolutionary Solidarity and the Poverty of Liberalism.” It offers a solid and devastating critique of ally politics, relating both personal experiences and examples of the limits of ally politics alongside larger political arguments. It is a very important piece and one that should be read and discussed widely.
The ally framework individualizes structures of oppression, constantly shifting action away from attacking those structures to an emphasis instead on individual behaviors. The focus on individual privilege has become such a popular political discourse precisely because it often leaves unquestioned the very structures that create that privilege. Though it is necessary to understand how we are shaped by systematic forms of oppression, if we aim to collectively dismantle the structures of domination that enable these privileges to exist, the individual transformations must happen concurrently.
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