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Finally Got The News

Finally Got The News

FINALLY GOT THE NEWS:  THE PRINTED LEGACY OF THE U.S. RADICAL LEFT, 1970–1979  EDITED BY BRAD DUNCAN AND INTERFERENCE ARCHIVE

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Finally Got the News uncovers the hidden legacy of the radical Left of the 1970s, a decade when vibrant social movements challenged racism, imperialism, patriarchy and capitalism itself. It combines written contributions from movement participants with original printed materials—from pamphlets to posters, flyers to newspapers—to tell this politically rich and little-known story.

The dawn of the 1970s saw an absolute explosion of interest in revolutionary ideas and activism. Young people radicalized by the antiwar movement became anti-imperialists, veterans of the Civil Rights and Black Power movements increasingly identified with communism and Pan-Africanism, and women were organizing for autonomy and liberation. While these movements may have different roots, there was also an incredible overlapping and intermingling of activists and ideologies. 

These diverse movements used printed materials as organizing tools in every political activity, creating a sprawling and remarkable array of printing styles, techniques, and formats. Through the lens of printed materials we can see the real nuts and bolts of revolutionary organizing in an era when thousands of young revolutionaries were attempting to put their beliefs into practice in workplaces and neighborhoods across the U.S.

 

PRAISE

Finally Got the News invites us to step into the vibrancy of our radical past. This amazing collection of movement ephemera—posters, flyers, newsletters, pamphlets, broadsides, and handwritten chant sheets—accompanied by critical essays from radical thinkers, introduces or reminds us of our tradition of struggle.  In a period where the archive is a vital resource for a new generation of liberationists, Finally Got the News brings history to life. The collection helps us recognize ourselves and each other: the cultural workers who made the flyers; the editorial collective laboring to produce the paper; the notes in the margins by the original owners. Our comrades, our labor, our vision. And in this way, Finally Got the News becomes what it is documenting, a portrait of an organic movement that continues to bloom.”—kai lumumba barrow, dreamer

“Finally Got the News has as much relevance today as its printed materials did in the 60`s and 70`s. Brad Duncan has put his finger on something that is very useful and important for people who want to understand the efforts and accomplishments of anti-imperialist, anticapitalist, leftist who organized in the past and honoring many brave souls who literally gave their life for the revolutionary movements. If a picture speaks a thousand words then this compendium speaks volumes to anyone who wants to learn history. Its images and articles can be transformed into a present day organizing tool and blueprint for anyone who is organizing in the national or community movements. Power to the People and right on Brad Duncan!—Hy Thurman, Chairman and cofounder, Young Patriots Organization Chicago; cofounder, Original Rainbow Coalition

“The decade of the 1970s is too often either forgotten entirely or remembered as a period of defeat, plain and simple. Lost are the continuous struggles, sharp debates, and strategic innovations that not only survive today, but provide the essential groundwork for many of our own struggles. By returning our attention to this crucial interlude, and by doing so on the basis of an unforgettable archive of movement visuals, Finally Got the News helps to prepare us for the difficult days ahead.”—George Ciccariello-Maher, Associate Professor of Politics and Global Studies at Drexel University and author of We Created Chávez: A People's History of the Venezuelan Revolution

“The publication of Finally Got the News: The Printed Legacy of the US Radical Left, 1970–1979 is a great service to the broader study of the US radical left in this, the cusp decade that lies between the end of the Vietnam War and reactionary Reagan administration’s wars on the people of the world. While covered in part by authors such as Fred Halstead and Max Elbum, Duncan brings to life through the digitizing of a very large sample of Left publications and leaflets in areas that span the early 1970s labor strikes and mass actions around Black Liberationto various revolutionary perspectives on the Nicaraguan and Iranian Revolutions at the end of the decade. This book presents it in living color, through the covers of these publications. All the historical tendencies on the Left appear to be represented through the presentation of their covers of their journals in this valuable book. As a revolutionary digital archivist working at a bricks-and-mortar labor library I've always seen the crying need to preserve, this, our common history.  Finally Got the News: The Printed Legacy of the US Radical Left, 1970–1979 by Bradley Duncan and the Interference Archive has greatly contributed to this preservation by its publication. Well done!”
David Walters, Director of the Holt Labor Library (San Francisco, CA)

“Neither the news, nor even the truth will actually set you free (not even in these times of fake news, truthiness, and other lies)—but Finally Got the News does go a long way in arming us with an approach to popular struggle which will bring us a bit closer towards true liberation. Every bit as relevant today as when the ‘zines discussed were first printed, this extraordinary collection of pamphlets, booklets, and publications—and vital commentaries on the important roles they played in communicating and educating an entire generation—is an historian’s dream come true. But it is designed instead for a 21st century street activist, and reads in part like a modern crime thriller. In dark times, it can be hard to remember the revolutionary fervor of just a decade or two ago; on the other hand, for elders, it can be too easy to break out into sermons about “the good old days.” Finally Got the News prevents both pitfalls from taking place: by including contemporary writings by youthful scholars, older organizers, and everyone in between, we get a critical interpretation of an often-forgotten aspect of people’s power. And if the news is getting you down, and you get tired for one moment of reading, you can check out the funky graphics. They’ll knock your socks off!”—Matt Meyer, educator, organizer, author and editor of Let Freedom Ring: A Collection of Documents from the Movements to Free U.S. Political Prisoners

“Brad Duncan’s Finally Got the News blew me away. It captures the vibrancy and diversity of 1970s radicals through the words and images they produced at the time. Its short essays about left print culture across a range of political movements and formations are both clarifying and inspiring. Its “radical roundtable,” a collective interview with veteran activists, pushed me to think in new ways about the role that periodicals and publications played in movements at the time. The book itself is a work of art and the broad array of activism it chronicles is breathtaking. As we gear up for a new set of struggles, these voices, images, and photographs, remind us of the rich legacy we have inherited.”
Karen Miller, Professor of History, LaGuardia Community College, author of Managing Inequality: Northern Racial Liberalism in Interwar Detroit

“This is a book to immerse oneself in.  It’s as if a rare archive of 1970s radical literature was shipped to your living room. Just as you start to marvel at the variety of material, the doorbell rings, and a half-dozen militants active in those years stop in to share their experiences and point to their favorite documents. Add to the mix punchy remarks by some of today’s sharpest movement-grounded historians, and you’ve got a unique treasure of an experience.”—Andy Cornell, author of Unruly Equality: U.S. Anarchism in the Twentieth Century

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