Prairie Fire: The Politics of Revolutionary Anti-Imperialism


“The Prairie Fire Organizing Committee is an activist group whose members advocate the overthrow of the current capitalist system as the only solution to racism, sexism, homophobia, classism and imperialism. … The Prairie Fire Organization began in 1975. It sprang up from the radical group known as Weatherman. Members of the group, Bernardine Dohrn, Bill Ayers, Jeff Jones, and Celia Sojourn (a pseudonym for several individuals who were unnamed), created a six-part book titled Prairie Fire:The Politics of Revolutionary Anti-Imperialism (1974), composed of sections titled, ‘Arm the Spirit,’ ‘Vietnam,’ ‘On the Road: Impressions of US History,’ ‘Imperialism in Crisis: The Third World,’ ‘Imperialism in Crisis: The Home Front,’ and ‘Against the Common Enemy’. The book’s preparation was a 12-month process, written collaboratively and adopted as the collective statement of the Weather Underground. Mark Rudd stated that the book ‘was an attempt to influence the movement that we had abandoned back in 1969. It tried to reach out to many thousands of New Leftist and former New Leftists by saying, in effect, Don’t despair, we’re all part of the same thing’. Bill Ayers explains that Prairie Fire ‘was an attempt to sum up our thinking since the Weatherman paper and especially since the townhouse. Through it we hoped to consolidate our political organization and to forge unity with progressive activist’. Ayers is referring to the 1970 Greenwich Village townhouse explosion which killed 3 members of Weatherman, Diana Oughton, Theodore Gold, and Terry Robbins. The book was a call to organize. It was Weather’s attempt to ask the questions that all revolutionary groups faced and to apply the lessons of former revolutionary groups to the present fight against imperialism. By creating this book, the Weatherman Underground required help from the aboveground community to distribute the book including Van Lydegraf and Jennifer Dohrn. This is how the Prairie Fire Distribution Committee was created which later became the Prairie Fire Organizing Committee. …”
W – Prairie Fire Organizing Committee
William Ayers’ forgotten communist manifesto: Prairie Fire
Verso: A Second Wind for Weather Underground? The Prairie Fire Statement
Prairie fire : the politics of revolutionary anti-imperialism : the political statement of the Weather Underground.

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