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ziq_lite wrote (edited )

I'm not a primitivist but I am definitely critical of civilization. I think a lot of the concerns come from a misunderstanding of what primitivist and other anti-civilization anarchisms really are.

There is no "anarcho-primitivist system", no one (save maybe a few romantics) is seriously proposing that we immediately "revert" back to a pre-civilizational existence (as if such a thing were even possible).

Instead, most primitivist and anti-civ theory is about making substantial and well-reasoned critiques of civilization and exploring possibilities for a future beyond civilization. Industrial civilization, at the very least, is obviously not sustainable, not to mention the vast amount of misery it requires to maintain itself. I know I hate living in it.

The usual accusations of bigotry against various groups:

Strict gender binaries are a product of civilization as well, A lot has been written on this subject, I'd suggest "The Prehistory of Sex" by Timothy Taylor for more on trans people before civilization.

Vegans: If you really want to be "cruelty free", industrial agriculture is not the way to go. Just because a vegan today does not eat direct animal products, the vast swaths of land required to produce their soy hotdogs and almond milk, as well as the entire industrial infrastructure that manufactures and transports it is killing plenty of animals.

The elderly: Most pre-civ people lived to around 60-70 years so I'm not sure what the point here is. I'm also not sure what the allure of living to 95 is if you spend your last few decades plugged into a dialysis machine or a television in a nursing home.

To summarize, primitivists don't have "notions that are not in favor of disabled people...". Maybe they just see these things in a different light.

This is a good essay that illustrates much of anti-civ theory:

https://sites.google.com/site/vagabondtheorist/elsewhere/destroying-civilization-destroying-nature

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HugeChessBrain wrote (edited )

Let me know if I mischaracterize your position in any way, but I have a small objection I'd be curious to hear your thoughts on.

It is true that rigid gender binary is closely linked with civilization. I am a trans woman and my personal conception of being transgender (I don't believe this applies to all transgender people) involves a disconnect between my "brain sex" and my (now former) physical sex characteristics. This is the only understanding of being transgender I've found that fits my personal experience. I believe this idea can be found in The Whipping Girl by Julia Serano. As a result of this I believe that even in a society without a rigid gender binary I would have a need to physically transition to whatever extent possible.

In a future beyond industrial civilization, I'm assuming this physical transition would be more or less impossible. I find the anti-civ position appealing, but as a result of possibly being unable to physically transition I'm not sure I'd want to live in a post-civilization world. No amount of freedom to determine my gender and have it acknowledged by others would make up for my physical sex characteristics being wrong.

I'm curious to hear any general thoughts you have on this. In your view what would the life of a person such as myself be like, post-civilization? Is this response just completely misguided? I'm operating from a place of nearly complete ignorance so please forgive me.

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ziq_lite wrote (edited )

Since you specifically mentioned 'post-civilization', that's a lot different than anarcho-primitivism. Postciv anarchists don't reject all technology, instead we weigh the benefits the technology provides us against the harm it does to the world and keep the things that make the world a better place.

https://www.reddit.com/r/PostCiv/comments/56qwlj/transhumanism_has_nothing_to_do_with_postciv/ is worth a read if you want to know more about postciv anarchism and how it approaches different technologies.

Die-hard anarcho primitivists would likely reject surgery and HRT if they actually lived a primitive lifestyle (which few do). I've seen trans primitivists that will only use herbal alternatives to HRT (which don't work nearly as well). But if you need surgery and drugs, anarcho-primitivism isn't for you. There are plenty of other anticiv persuasions that aren't so dogmatic and rigid when it comes to industrial tech.

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shanoxilt wrote

Based on some of the clueless things here, I can discern that none of you has a disability that requires electricity or medicine to survive.

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thelegendarybirdmonster wrote (edited )

disclaimer: idk what to call myself, maybe some sort of egoist @h+, but I havent read enough about it. What's sure is that I've read about primitivism/anticiv and I know I'm not primitivst.

What I liked about primitivism is theire critique of technology. There is one text that I cant find anymore that compared technologic systems and civilisation to a steam engine that keeps gaining speed and can't stop. Maybe it's an anticiv text I dont remember. Can someon link it if you know what it is.

On the other hand, @h+ is also a critique of technology, and I found it much more pertinent and deep than anprim critiques. especially that basic "you need to mine metals so technology is inherently violent" that anprims flock to, wich is stupid.

What I didnt like: They idealise primitive tribes and use those idealisation as counterarguments to any critique, they have almost religious views on "nature" and idealise the "untainted humans" as eden garden. they also see nature as some sort of god that they need to preserve and protect while I see it just as a tool.

Also, I dont really understand anprim praxis, there isnt anything "real" about it. Like, green anarchist make community gardens, syndicalists do syndicalist stuff, ... anprims whine and build theire hut in the woods.

Further reading:

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Mullvaden wrote

Well, what I've read of primitivism they tend to defend their skeptic view of anti-biotics (because it's a civ thing) with the notion that civilization somehow caused the sicknesses they cure. While some people get sick because they eat to much and exercise to little it's complete bullshit to state that civilization created TB for instance. Civilization don't create germs (not yet at least). They have a romantic view that people in hunter-gatherer groups never get sick which is also bullshit. They just don't get exposed to as much people and germs as folks in civilization. The only way to reach a primitivist society is to kill off 99% of the world's population or somehow restrict breeding voluntarily which is unlikely to work ever.

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[deleted] wrote (edited )

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Mullvaden wrote

I fail to see how anything you write isn't deductible from what I wrote. If anything, you show primitivism to be the misanthropic ideology it is.

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[deleted] wrote (edited )

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Mullvaden wrote

I wrote that civilization did not create TB, I didn't write that germs/viruses don't spread faster and mutate in larger populations.

Being against the only option we have right now for the human population of the world, unless they all commit mass-suicide, is in my view a misanthropic standpoint.

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buttercupcake wrote

because they spout complete and utter bullshit like "ancoms want a collectivist totalitarian society"

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ziq_lite wrote (edited )

That's literally what anarcho-communism is though. It's not a put down. All collectivist ideologies are totalitarian - it just means they encompass the entire society. At least when an individualist anarchist uses the term.

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alexander wrote

People these days learn about -isms by reading the first two paragraphs of the relevant Wikipedia article, or by seeing someone mention something on Twitter, or places like Raddle. 99% of the detractors of primitivism haven't read any primitivism. Just like 99% of the detractors of anarchism haven't read any anarchism. The only thing you're missing is that people are clueless yet vocal. It's similar to "but if we have anarchism everyone will just kill each other".

There's many things to criticise in anarcho-primitivism, and I frequently criticise them. However, the knee-jerk stuff about ableism, transphobia, is unfounded, and mostly espoused by anarcho-leftists—who, honestly, usually don't even understand their own brand of Anarchism™ beyond the first two paragraphs on Wikipedia.

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Pop wrote

  • Lack of imagination, related to which are
  • lazy misunderstandings of the position, and finally
  • real problems with 'primitivism'
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kore wrote

nature is such a non-word, all technology is natural

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boomco wrote

Because they want to hunt furry creatures and eat them.

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[deleted] wrote (edited )

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thelegendarybirdmonster wrote

when you believe animals have as much worth as other people, eating animals far less than average is still eating animals too much.

But yeah, i understand what you meant.

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