Pirate Utopias: Moorish Corsairs & European Renegadoes

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Autonomedia, Jan 1, 2003 - History - 219 pages
14 Reviews
'Peter Lamborn Wilson shows why we cherish pirates - and why, for the sake of the future, we must continue to do so. Interesting and compelling...a rollicking, adventurous book.'Marcus Rediker, author, Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea'A chronicler, a historiographer, and a piratologist in the tradition of Defoe...with immense learning and interesting sympathies. His scholarship cuts through the seas of ignorance and prejudice with grace and power.'Peter Linebaugh, author, The London Hanged'One of those rare books which give historians new ideas to think about. It deals with 17th century European converts to Islam - usually but not always as pirates - whose numbers Wilson puts at thousands. His careful analysis of (the) renegadoes, their ideas, and political practice leads to a very tentative suggestion that some of them may have links with Rosicrucianism and the 18th-century Enlightenment...Historians will have to think about this book's novel theme and pursue its implications. Wilson really does turn the world upside down!'Christopher Hill, author, The World Turned Upside DownFrom the 16th to the 19th centuries, Muslim corsairs from the Barbary Coast ravaged European shipping and enslaved thousands of unlucky captives. During this same period, thousands more Europeans converted to Islam and joined the pirate holy war. Were these men (and women) the scum of the seas, apostates, traitors -- Renegadoes? Or did they abandon and betray Christendom as a praxis of social resistance?Peter Lamborn Wilson focuses on the corsairs' most impressive accomplishment, the independent Pirate Republic of Salé, in Morocco, in the 17th century. Corsairs, Sufis, pederasts, "irresistible" Moorish women, slaves, adventures, Irish rebels, heretical Jews, British spies, a Moorish pirate in old New York, and radical working-class heroes all populate a book which intends to entertain and to make a point about insurrectionary communities.
  

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Review: Pirate Utopias: Moorish Corsairs & European Renegadoes

User Review  - Dylan - Goodreads

As a fairly historically ignorant person I didn't have the context to grok a lot of the analysis of political structures and relationships in this work, and had a hard time seeing the "utopia" in a ... Read full review

Review: Pirate Utopias: Moorish Corsairs & European Renegadoes

User Review  - Christian - Goodreads

The Mediterranean pirate life is documented in this fascinating book. For a rather short period of time, pirates worked out of well-known cities along the North African coast, and lived the life we ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

PIRATE AND MERMAID
7
A CHRISTIAN TURND TURK
11
DEMOCRACY BY ASSASSINATION
27
A COMPANY OF ROGUES
39
AN ALABASTER PALACE IN TUNISIA
51
THE MOORISH REPUBLIC OF SALE
71
MURAD REIS AND THE SACK OF BALTIMORE
93
THE CORSAIRS CALENDAR
143
PIRATE UTOPIAS
187
AFTERWORD A MOORISH PIRATE IN OLD NEW YORK
205
BIBLIOGRAPHY
216
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Peter Lamborn Wilson is a notorious underground intellectual who has written histories of heretical sufism, spiritual anarchism in Colonial America, halucinogenic mushroom lore in Irish literature, and other traditions of autonomy in pre-modern and modern times. He lives in upstate New York.

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