Opinion

David Graeber pushed us to imagine greater human possibilities | Rebecca Solnit

The anthropologist, who died last week, had cheerful, insurrectionary verve as a scholar and direct-action activist

This week has mingled, for me, the sadness of losing David Graeber the person, and the joy of immersing myself in David Graeber the writer, by diving into his many electrifyingly original essays and books, though their brilliance makes the loss all the sadder. The anthropologist and activist died in Venice on 2 September, suddenly and unexpectedly, and waves of grief, remembrance and gratitude streamed in from around the globe.

He was a remarkable person, both a distinguished scholar and a committed direct-action organiser. The latter ranged from the global justice movement of the late 1990s to Occupy Wall Street in 2011, up to his support in recent years of the beautifully anarchic autonomous Rojava region in northeast Syria.

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