Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Jean Paul Sartre interviews Daniel Cohn-Bendit: May 20, 1968

This conversation between Jean-Paul Sartre and Daniel Cohn-Bendit was first published in Le nouvel observateur on May 20, 1968. The translation, by B.R. Brewster, was collected in The Student Revolt: The Activists Speak (Panther Books, London:1968), edited by Hervé Bourges. It was previously published online at Medium

Jean-Paul Sartre: Within a few days, although no-one called for a general strike, France has been practically paralysed by work stoppages and factory occupations. And all because the students took control of the streets in the Latin Quarter. What is your analysis of the movement you have unleashed? How far can it go?

Daniel Cohn-Bendit: It has grown much larger than we could have foreseen at the start. The aim is now the overthrow of the regime. But it is not up to us whether or not this is achieved. If the Communist Party, the CGT and the other union headquarters shared it there would be no problem; the regime would fall within a fortnight, as it has no counterthrust against a trial of strength supported by all working-class forces… read more:

A reading list to celebrate works of and inspired by the Situationist International, on the 50th anniversary of the May 1968 uprisings.
In 1969, The Black Dwarf published an issue on "The Year of the Militant Woman," under the editorship of Sheila Rowbotham. Reproduced below is the centrepiece article of the issue, Rowbotham's powerful manifesto of women's liberation - an article which broke new ground on the left in Britain. As Rowbotham wrote later, "everyday details such as these were not part of the language of politics in 1969."
In this extract from the first issue of The Black Dwarf, Jean-Jacques Lebel gives a vivid first-hand account of the events of May '68 in Paris

Read more: Archive of 1968

On the 50th anniversary of the global uprisings of 1968, we present a reading list to inspire the continued fight for freedom...