The Zapatistas' famous "Ya basta!" - enough already! - was the first uttering of a new story: a story about unbinding the ties of official history, uncovering buried seeds of popular resistance, and revealing the glimmerings of a truly insurgent modernity. Combining narrative history, literary criticism, ethnography, and media analysis, A Poetics of Resistance provides a refreshing take on Mexico's Zapatista movement by examining the means, meanings, and mythos behind the Zapatista image. The first "postmodern revolution" presented itself to the world through a complex web of propaganda in every available medium: the colorful communiqués of Subcomandante Marcos, the ski masks, uniforms, dolls, murals, songs, and weapons both symbolic and real.
By proliferating a profound and resonant set of myths, symbols, and grand historical gestures calculated to reflect their ideologies, organizing methodologies, and cultural values, the Zapatistas helped set into motion a global uprising, and the awareness that behind this uprising is a renewed vision of history. Jeff Conant's engaging and innovative examination of the Zapatistas' communication strategies will be an important tool for movements everywhere engaged in creating a world where many worlds fit; in demolishing History in order to construct histories; and in unseating not only the powerful, but Power itself. "Conant has an ear for story, poetry, and wonder; his new telling of the Zapatista struggle is full of delights." —Raj Patel, author of Stuffed and Starved