The Many-Headed Hydra
The Hidden History of the Revolutionary Atlantic
  • -1
  • 0
448 pages / March 2012 / 9781844678655

Not in stock

/ 9781789601947

Not available

Long before the American Revolution and the Declaration of the Rights of Man, a motely crew of sailors, slaves, pirates, labourers, market women, and indentured servants had ideas about freedom and equality that would for ever change history. The Many-Headed Hydra recounts their stories in a sweeping history of the role of the dispossessed in the making of the modern world.


“A landmark in the development of an Atlantic perspective on early American history. Ranging from Europe to Africa to the Caribbean and North America, it makes us think in new ways about the role of working people in the making of the modern world.”

“This is a marvelous book. Linebaugh and Rediker have done an extraordinary job of research into buried episodes and forgotten writings to recapture, with eloquence and literary flair, the lost history of resistance to capitalist conquest on both sides of the Atlantic.”

“More than just a vivid illustration of the gains involved in thinking beyond the boundaries between nation-states. Here, in incendiary form, are essential elements for a people’s history of our dynamic, transcultural present.”

The Many-Headed Hydra is a wonderful book. Its passion and commitment encourages its readers to think associatively, to make progressive connections”

“Scum of the maritime sort had their spell in the limelight with The Many-Headed Hydra. This compellting history of the ‘revolutionary Atlantic’ portrays pirates, sailors, dockers, sea-going whores and other dregs of the ocean and coast as briny rebels who resisted the global commercial order and even disrupted the slave trade for decades.”

“Peter Linebaugh and Marcus Rediker, militantly libertarian academics, have written, in what they call this ‘black book of capitalism’, an account of trans-Atlantic social change since the seventeenth century, from the viewpoint of the underdog...The authors’ egalitarian bias may stimulate as much accumulation as Das Kapital.”

Verso recommends