The final month of 2023 was covered by a shadow of death and destruction in Gaza. In November, The Commoner published a statement calling for freedom for Palestine in response to Israel’s ongoing act of genocide. Since then, the international community has remained incapable of (or downright refused to) generate long-lasting peace through an end to occupation.
In our 2022 and 2023 New Year’s statements, we chose to include fireworks displays as our banner. Fireworks are a celebration of a new year, new hopes, and new promises to ourselves and to our communities. Many people will light them in January, but how many will make the connection that whilst explosions in the sky may bring them joy, they bring terror for those in Gaza?
The Christmas and New Year period will be a time of joy but also a time of reflection, regardless of faith or background. As we sit and reflect on our 2023 and hopes for 2024, we keep in our hearts and minds those who do not have the opportunity to share in safety and plenty.
We also remind ourselves why it is that we established The Commoner: to promote a world of autonomy, peace, and security for all people, and to springboard voices that want to achieve those goals. We owe it to our readers and supporters to carry that mission into 2024 and beyond.
This year, The Commoner continued to publish a variety of articles covering politics, history, society, and popular media. Amongst our most popular with online audiences were ‘Big Trees, Small Acts: Does the UK Honours System Divide and Rule Black British Media?' by Tré Ventour-Griffiths; ‘Zapatista Autonomy and Stateless Participatory Democracy’ by Al Raven; and ‘On Anarchism, Technology, and Transhumanism’ by reimagining. Each of these pieces brought a unique perspective to well-known struggles and movements in a way that clearly resonated with our readers.
We further demonstrated The Commoner’s range with other published pieces such as Davel’s poem ‘Lines on a Union Card,' Javier Sethness’s review of Islam and Anarchism, and Kimmy’s article on how anarchism relates to the liberation of West Papua. These pieces speak to our most fundamental concerns as anarchists and libertarian socialists: the self-liberation of the oppressed, whether against bosses or oppressive regimes.
This year we also published our second printed edition of The Commoner in collaboration with Organise magazine. The print was themed around the climate crisis and dedicated to the Stop Cop City movement, which seeks to save an Atlanta forest from being flattened to create a police training facility. This and our first printed edition are currently available to all new patrons.
We had a fantastic time at the London Anarchist Bookfair, as well. It was such a pleasure meeting so many fantastic advocates for key issues around disability, gender, and beyond, hopefully setting the stage for future collaboration. We had a huge amount of interest in our print editions of The Commoner, due probably in no small part to our chosen topics of COVID-19 and climate change. We are so grateful to our designer, Adam, and to all of our writers who made these print editions possible. We hope to get more copies printed and to publish additional issues this year! (If you’re a publisher with an interest in helping us with the printing and distribution of this kind of material, please do let us know).
We further saw there was significant interest in our upcoming book, Anarchist Voices of the World. Our fantastic cover art from Erin is only the tip of the iceberg; we have so many more amazing pieces to share alongside each of our interviews. We are currently in discussions with a publisher to release this book hopefully in early Q1–Q2 2024. Stay tuned! And remember that if you want to ensure we can keep the lights on, we would be grateful for a Patreon subscription. Even if it’s just a few pounds a week, that sustained commitment is a huge help to us. Moreover, all patrons, we’re happy to announce, will receive a free copy of Anarchist Voices when it releases!
Thank you so much to everyone who read, shared, and financially supported us in 2023. We are so excited to hit the ground running in 2024 as we expand into new areas. If you’re interested in writing for us or have some other idea for collaboration, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to hear from you.
Your Friends at The Commoner