The occupation of factories, of the industrial fabric of a society, is essential to any broad revolutionary movement against State-Capital. It is however by no means sufficient. Occupations can only be a part of a more general effort to create spaces of autonomy, economically, politically and so on. Left to themselves, either as isolated occupations, or as legally recognised cooperatives, they will perhaps survive, but with enormous difficulties, including sustained opposition to their success. And what are often not addressed are even more fundamental questions about the purpose of factory occupations.
Very often, the initial motive is to secure employment. But fighting for jobs, however important, is not in itself radical and should not serve to justify the setting aside of issues that any radical movement must address. What are the aims of factory occupations? Are they part of a larger social movement/s? What is to be produced, how is it to be produced, with what goal? Should not a radical movement against capitalism not ultimately seek to minimise, go beyond, industrial forms of labour; should it not in other words openly contest labour as such, as this was developed under capitalism?
None of these comments are of course meant to dismiss factory occupations. On the contrary, they are an invitation to think through the radical possibilities that such occupations can give rise to. And in this instance, the current Vio.Me. factory occupation in Greece may be exemplary, at least for Europe, and perhaps beyond.
What follows is a film chronicle of events, debates, solidarities leading up to the re-starting of work in the occupied factory of Vio.Me., from DiakoptesAthens …