Did Pirates Pioneer Democracy?

Published on: April 15 / 2023

David Graeber’s final book uncovers the politics of the high seas

Pirate Enlightenmnet by Ian Beacock for the New Republic

Graeber, who died in 2020 at the age of 59, was an anthropologist and social theorist of the highest caliber. He was also a fierce anti-globalization activist who found in the Occupy movement a cause that suited his distaste for inequality and authority. Pirate Enlightenment is fired by the same rebellious temper. With arresting certainty, it claims that a bold democratic experiment flowered in eighteenth-century Madagascar, thus unraveling tales many times told about how Europeans reinvented democracy and built the modern world first, best, and by themselves.

Read the full article on the New Republic website

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