It’s hard to know whether a word can ever be rehabilitated – or whether the attempt should even be made…
The word “anarchy” evokes images of dangerous mobs, spiky-haired youths hurling garbage cans through Starbucks windows, and the chaos of the war of all against all.
However, the word “anarchy” simply means “without rulers” – and this state of affairs is something we desperately desire and defend in so many areas of our own lives. If a political ruler were to tell us who to marry, what to learn, and which job to take, we would rebel against such tyrannical intrusions on our freedoms. If the government were to tell us what to read, want to watch and what to listen to, we would justifiably cry “censorship” and lead the charge against such mind control.
How can we reconcile this contradiction? Is being “without rulers” good, or bad? How can we fear something so terribly, while at the same time treasuring it so mightily?
“Everyday Anarchy” addresses this challenge head-on, arguing that being free of rulers is not something to fear – personally or politically – but rather a goal that we must constantly strive towards.