Caliban and the Witch

Women, The Body and Primitive Accumulation

Silvia Federici     2004     393p     6.5 x 9.5

Marx says that Capitalism comes into the world dripping with blood from the enclosure of common lands, the enslavement of europeans to the wage and the extermination and enslavement of africans and native americans. Foucault looks at the same period of time and speaks only of mass incarceration, torture and execution, yet neither him nor Marx say anything of the Witch Hunts. Federici shows their complete ignorance for the role of the Witch Hunts and the millions of women who lost their life during the birth of Capitalism. Caliban and the Witch is the history of this ‘transition’. From the peasant revolts of the middle ages to the rise of mechanical philosophy, Federici investigates the capitalist rationale for social reproduction. Federici shows how the struggle against the rebel body and the alienation of mind and body were intricate parts in the rise of Capitalism. A challenging, but good book to read with friends!

Federici followed this text up fourteen years later with Witches, Witch-Hunting, and Women.



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