key reading2

Localism: Manifesto For A Twenty-First Century England

This is an ideological manifesto which summarises the philosophical tenets of Localism specifically in the context of England today, and discusses how the implementation of these ideological principles could improve our modern society. The book crosses false dichotomies to present a collection of ideas from across the political spectrum, offering a vision of a regenerated England which finds its strength in an organic foundation formed of its local communities and diverse regions.

Small is Beautiful: A Study of Economics as if People Mattered

In his most famous work, radical economist E.F. Schumacher tears apart the modern day fetish of ‘growth economics’ and the obsession with ‘bigness’. A student of Leopold Kohr and his idea of ‘small is beautiful’ Schumacher argues for a return to smaller more manageable systems, that place the well-being of people over profit. 


The Breakdown of Nations

Austrian-born economist Leopold Kohr gives a cutting diagnosis of the problems facing the post-war world in this 1957 treatise. From atomic theory to population statistics, Kohr tackles bigness and its ills from all angles in this, his magnum opus, which was to become the foundation of the ‘degrowth’ political school.

Flatpack Democracy 2.0: Power Tools for Reclaiming Local Politics

In 2011 a group of local residents worked together to take over the town council of Frome. This book sets out how they seized power and what happened next, and provides the tools for taking action to reclaim local politics. Ultimately, Flatpack Democracy 2.0 answers the question: how can politics be reclaimed by the people?

Manifesto for a European Renaissance

This manifesto offers a strong argument in favour of the right to difference for all cultures and civilisations, and importantly the right of peoples to defend themselves from cultural homogenisation. It offers a vision of a regenerated Europe which will find its strength in authentic values and traditions, in opposition to the new imperialism of globalism.


Village Democracy

The author passionately sets out his argument for radical decentralisation of power as the only answer to the current crises in politics, trade, ecology, and international affairs. Friends with E.F. Schumacher and Kohr, he championed the small is beautiful principle and was a true localist. John Papworth an English clergyman, writer and activist. He was made famous by his stance on shoplifting from big stores stating “Jesus said ‘Love your neighbor,’ he didn’t say ‘Love Marks and Spencers”.

additional reading

Local is our Future

An empirical attack on Globalism and its destructive impact on communities disappearing livelihoods to financial instability, from climate chaos to an epidemic of depression, we face crises on a number of seemingly unrelated fronts. This well-referenced book traces the common roots of these problems in a globalised economy that is incompatible with life on a finite planet.

Real England

Real England details Kingsnorth’s travels around England exploring the effects of global capital on culture, character and local identity, he meets with canal dwellers, farmers, fisherman, shopkeepers, publicans and many more. It’s an important but sad read when you consider this was published in 2008 and the wave of global forces have been allowed to reign unchecked destroying traditional industries and slowly eroding the nations identity which is still carrying on now.

Blueprint for Revolution

A fascinating retelling of the stories of Optor! – a radical nonviolent activist group in Serbia at the turn of the century, opposing authoritarian leader Milosevic, and lessons from other movements around the world, from the tactics of Harvey Milk, the first openly gay elected official in the history of California, to the civil disobedience of Egyptian taxi drivers and Russian Lego marches. Popovic provides pages upon pages of inspiring examples of successful, nonviolent activism, and uses them to teach greater lessons applicable to other situations such as the Localist struggle today. 

A Pair of Cranks

A medley of short essays from Leopold Kohr and his disciple E. F. Schumacher, ranging from broad-scope reviews of the ‘Small is Beautiful’ movement to specific and often eccentric remedies prescribed by the theorists to solve issues including urban sprawl, agricultural failure and slum regeneration.

Mutual Aid

This collection of essays, initially published, explore the role of mutually-beneficial cooperation and reciprocity (or “mutual aid”) in the animal kingdom and human societies both past and present. It is an argument against theories of social Darwinism that emphasize competition and survival of the fittest. Instead Kropotkin argues that mutual aid has pragmatic advantages for the survival of human and animal communities.

The Problem of Democracy

In this short but insightful book, Alain de Benoist deconstructs the buzzword ‘democracy’. He looks at the history of the term from Ancient Greece to the twenty-first century before describing what true, organic democracy looks like, in comparison to our modern illusion of choice.

What Are People For?

A collection of essays between 1975 to 1990, discusses topics such declining farming communities the dangers of constant technological innovation, human belief in “improving” nature.Taken as a whole, they reveal Berry’s firm conviction that Western civilization has lost its way and has followed industrial and technological innovation into a self-indulgent, immoral, environmentally destructive, dehumanizing, monolithic, and unjust way of life.

The Breakdown of Great Britain

A more pragmatic and close-to-home application of Leopold Kohr’s earlier work, The Breakdown of Great Britain takes the form of a short pamphlet describing in detail how his theory could – and should – be applied to the United Kingdom.

Beyond Human Rights – Defending Freedoms

In his trademark erudite style, Alain de Benoist confronts one of liberalism’s foundational myths – unalienable human rights. He begins by exploring the history of ‘rights’ from antiquity to the present day before reviewing the use – and abuse – of human rights by liberal democracies. This book is a thought-provoking read highly recommended for anyone wishing to peer behind the curtain of Western government.

Rules for Radicals

Saul Alinksy was arguably the most successful political organiser in modern day American politics, praised by the left both Hilary and Obama studied him extensively, and accredited by the right for single handedly “destroying America”. Alinsky was highly influential in the civil rights movement where he galvanised black citizens against the government, to organise working class workers against their employers, this book covers the most important things he learned about organising communities throughout his careers. Reads great with Blueprint for Revolution.

Why I Am Not Going To Buy a Computer

American novelist, poet and farmer Wendell Berry invokes concerns about diminishing human ingenuity, knowledge and endeavour while setting out his reasons for not investing in a computer to help him in his writing. Rallying against ‘technological fundamentalism’ this book is a good insight into a man leading a genuinely localist lifestyle.

Capitalist Realism

This book explores Fisher’s concept of “capitalist realism” which he takes to describe “the widespread sense that not only is capitalism the only viable political and economic system, but also that it is now impossible even to imagine a coherent alternative to it.” This book was a hit in 2008 and inspired groups such as ‘Occupy Wall Street’.

On the Brink of The Abyss

A compilation of de Benoist’s articles on economics, ranging from the financial crash, Citizenship income and debt and class poverty. Key essays to read in this are ‘Money’, ‘Death on Credit’, ‘Middle Classes and Working Classes: the politics of poverty’, ‘Immigration, the reverse army of capital’ and ‘Confronting the Capitalist system’.

Welcome to the Desert of the Real

Zizek proposes that global capitalism is fundamentalist and that America was complicit in the rise of Muslim fundamentalism. It points to our dreaming about the catastrophe in numerous disaster movies before it happened, and explores the irony that the tragedy has been used to legitimise torture. Last but not least it analyzes the fiasco of the predominant leftist response to the events.