The Movement of the Free Spirit: general considerations and firsthand testimony concerning some brief flowerings of life in the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, and, incidentally, our own time

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Zone Books, Sep 12, 1994 - History - 302 pages
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This book by the legendary Situationist activist and author of The Revolution of Everyday Life examines the heretical and millenarian movements that challenged social and ecclesiastical authority in Europe from the 1200s into the 1500s.

Although Vaneigem discusses a number of different movements such as the Cathars and Joachimite millenarians, his main emphasis is on the various manifestations of the Movement of the Free Spirit in northern Europe. He sees not only resistance to the power of state and church but also the immensely creative invention of new forms of love, sexuality, community, and exchange. Vaneigem is particularly interested in the radical opposition presented by these movements to the imperatives of an emerging market-based economy, and he evokes crucial historical parallels with the antisystemic rebellions of the 1960s. The book includes translations of original texts and source materials.

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Contents

Preface to the American Edition
7
From the Twilight of the Bureaucrats to
15
The Church Struggles to Evolve
59
The Principal Manifestations of the Movement
95
Outline for an Alchemy of the Self
233
Notes
259
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