March 2020

Stop Thief!

By Peter Linebaugh
Originally published by PM Press

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'There is not a more important historian living today. Period.'
—Robin D.G. Kelley, author of Freedom Dreams: The Black Radical Imagination

'E.P. Thompson, you may rest now. ... [A] commonist manifesto for the 21st century'
—Mike Davis, author of Planet of Slums

'Peter Linebaugh's great act of historical imagination … takes the cliché of "globalization" and makes it live'
—T.J. Clark, author of Farewell to an Idea

In this majestic tour-de-force, celebrated historian Peter Linebaugh takes aim at the thieves of land, the polluters of the seas, and the ravagers of the forests. Scarcely a society has existed on the face of the earth that has not had commoning at its heart.

From Thomas Paine to the Luddites, from Karl Marx—who concluded his great study of capitalism with the enclosure of commons—to the practical dreamer William Morris—who made communism into a verb and advocated communising industry and agriculture—to the 20th-century communist historian E.P. Thompson, Linebaugh brings to life the vital commonist tradition. He traces the red thread from the great revolt of commoners in 1381 to the enclosures of Ireland, and the American commons, where European immigrants who had been expelled from their commons met the immense commons of the native peoples and the underground African-American urban commons. Illuminating these struggles in this indispensable collection, Linebaugh reignites the ancient cry, 'STOP, THIEF!'