By Ben Barker / Deep Green Resistance Wisconsin
The dominant culture, industrial civilization, is insane. Literally. It is in direct opposition to life. We can see this by looking from any angle: an economic system based on the infinite consumption of living beings; the spiritual sickness that allows clear-cuts, rape, conquest, and oceanic dead-zones; social rewards for those who can fuck others over most efficiently. as the world burns, the destructiveness of this culture has become too clear for debate.
Consuming the living and converting them into dead products is essential to the functioning of civilization. indeed, it is the meaning of the word “production”. civilization as a whole can be defined by its material functioning: a culture based on the growth of cities, with cities being defined as people living more or less permanently in one place in densities high enough to require the routine importation of food and other necessities of life. it can also be described as a system that socially rewards (and requires) exploitation, domination, and atrocity. Both definitions reveal civilization’s fundamental death urge.
What is killed by civilization includes the psyches and souls of human beings. Consider, for example, the global scale of people struggling with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Bi-Polar Disorder (at least two million people in the United States alone), Depression, and Anxiety. Consider also lives wasted in wage slavery, addiction, and apathy. Some know mental struggle more intimately than others, but the dominant culture makes all of its members sick.
This book is for those who feel, in their bones, the struggle of living in such a culture, and for those who love life and want to fight back. The numerous activists, artists, and writers who have contributed to this book also surely know this struggle. Included here is a compilation of personal stories, essays, artwork, and maps for healing, all pointing towards, and developing an answer to, this general question: what does it mean to be sane in an insane culture?