Black and Red Books
Black and Red
A Brief History
The Black and Red publishing project began in 1968 in Kalamazoo, Michigan. The first publications were in the form of a periodical of which there were 6-1/2 issues. Events in Europe and North America in May 1968 were a focal point for these early texts. The role of an intellectual in the university was another.
In 1969, some collaborators on the periodical moved to Detroit and became the nucleus of a group that established the Detroit Printing Co-op a year later. Volunteer printers and helpers produced over twenty Black and Red titles as well as numerous community and radical books and pamphlets. Experiences at the print shop led to an appreciation of non-intellectual labor and to insights into libertarian social relations. These experiences were discussed and found their way into works published at the Co-op.
Other texts published in the 1970s reflect the Black and Red group’s interest in historical attempts to loosen the bonds of State power. We exposed the constraints and ideological authority of Capital and also examined proposed solutions to social distress, judging many of them to be “rackets.” Political militancy was critically examined. A number of these texts were translations or reprinted from previously published editions.
Concern for the accelerating destruction of Mother Earth led us to question the widespread belief in Progress. We came to appreciate earlier rebellions against the State and to approve of many of the rebels’ non-Western values.
Fredy Perlman at the Detroit Printing Co-op in the 1970s.