Wednesday, 11 December 2013

December Film Screening

We're ending the year with a film that is less overtly political and a little more entertaining, but not without a moral or two....

'What to Do in Case of Fire'

In 1987, six young Berlin squatters fight street battles with police, smoke a lot of dope and film themselves making a home-made pressure-cooker bomb. The bomb is a dud and soon forgotten.

However, 12 years later it goes off - the group have long since disbanded and some of them are a bit more conservative and traditional than they used to be...


Friday, 20 December
Doors open: 6pm
Film starts: 6.30pm

People's Cinema, 57 Manners St, Wellington

Watch the trailer here.
Original: Was tun, wenn's brennt. 

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Huia Books

We have a new order of both fiction and non-fiction Huia Books in the Shop available at especially low prices.

The books include both the Māori and English editions of 'Maumahara ki tērā Nōema' / 'Remember That November' - a children's book about the story of the invasion of Parihaka on 5th November 1881. As one young reader put it, “The book was in two halves. One was about a man called Guy (who had) fireworks. He tried to blow up the king and his men… Part 2: The government tried to take the Maori land. The government won, but MAORI came back and WIN IT BACK.

We have several others books specifically about Taranaki, including 'Ngāti Ruanui: A History', which Huia say is a 'fascinating, at times chilling, and ultimately inspiring' history of the South Taranaki iwi Ngāti Ruanui. The central theme of the book is described as 'the unwavering determination of the Ngāti Ruanui tribe to hold onto their land and their autonomy'.

We also have both volumes of 'Te Tau Ihu o Te Waka: A History of Māori of Nelson and Marlborough' - volume one: 'Te Tangata me te Whenua - The People and the Land' and volume two: 'Te Ara Hou – The New Society'. The first volume, published in 2004, is based on reports written by the authors to background iwi and hapu claims to the Waitangi Tribunal. The second volume was published three years later and looks specifically at the effects of colonisation in the area.
We also have both the Māori and English editions of the NZ Post Māori Language Award winner of 2012 - 'Tōku Reo, Tōku Ohooho : My Language, My Inspiration'. The author, Chris Winitana, says the book "weaves together the many independent threads of action undertaken by a great number of people to ensure the survival of the Māori language. It follows the efforts of Māori from 1972 and the petition for the Māori language to bring our language out of the shadows and into the light."

Here is a complete list of the Huia Books we have recently added to our shelves:
  • Huia Histories of Māori: Ngā Tāhuhu Kōrero; 
  • Hikoi: Forty Years of Maori Protest;
  • Sexuality and The Stories of Indigenous People; 
  • Resistance: An Indigenous Response to Neoliberalism;
  • My Language, My Inspiration Tōku Reo / Tōku Ohooho – My Language, My Inspiration; 
  • Ngoingoi Pewhairangi: A Remarkable Life;
  • Te Wiremu – Henry Williams: Early Years in the North; 
  • The Beating Heart: A Political and Socio-economic History of Te Arawa;
  • Contested Ground: Te Whenua i Tohea – The Taranaki Wars 1860–1881; 
  • The Parihaka Album: Lest We Forget; 
  • Ngati Ruanui: A History;
  • Te Tau Ihu o Te Waka: A History of Maori of Nelson and Marlborough, Volume II: Te Ara Hou – The New Society; 
  • Te Tau Ihu o Te Waka: A History of Maori of Nelson and Marlborough, Volume I: Te Tangata me te Whenua – The People and the Land;
  • Once Upon a Time in Aotearoa; 
  • A Well Written Body;
  • Luminous; 
  • Dark Jelly; 
  • Josefa and the Vu; 
  • The Adventures of Vela;  
  • The Songmakers Chair;   
  • The Seven Stars of Matariki; 
  • Maumahara ki tērā Nōema / Remember That November

Sunday, 17 November 2013

New Books!

We have just received two cartons of new books at the Freedom Shop. Included amongst the books is just published 'Undoing Border Imperialism' by Harsha Waila - a book about migration, state control and state violence. In the book Harsha urges people organsing against border imperialism to be aware of the illegal settlement and appropriation of lands throughout time, the book ends with a discussion on decolonisation. More about 'Undoing Border Imperialism' can be read here.
"What I am trying to say is that working in solidarity with someone does not preclude us from, but rather requires us to, challenge behaviors that are sexist, homophobic, or capitalist. This is based on the recognition of one another as changing individuals. It is through these dialogues and demands for accountability that we aim to work toward a world free of oppression, while struggling for all people to live with dignity and safety."
- Alex Mah, Excerpt from Undoing Border Imperialism

"The precarity of both labor and social organization are intertwined and cyclic: capitalism requires precarious and exploitable workers to facilitate increasing capital accumulation, and creates those precarious lives through hierarchies of systemic oppression along with its coercive extractions of labor and dispossessions from land."
- Harsha Walia, Excerpt from Undoing Border Imperialism

Another recent publication is Michael Schmidt's 'Cartography of Revolutionary Anarchism' in which the global history of anarchism is divided into five waves, beginning in Mexico in 1868 and ending at the present. Each chapter begins with a map situating in place the anarcho struggles at the time, the first wave features New Caledonia.
"Part history, part manifesto, Cartography of Revolutionary Anarchism is a succinct and insightful polemic. Michael Schmidt has distilled a vast literature on anarchism to demonstrate that anarchism is a historical movement with deep roots in the working class and continuity into the present. The book is lively, with equal measures of pragmatic judgement and hope; it is plainspoken, powerful, and thoughtful. Activists and scholars interested in anarchism will find here much to contemplate and debate and take to heart."--Mark Leier, author of Bakunin: A Biography

Other books include: 'Captive Genders' by Nat Smith & Eric A. Stanley; 'Debt: The First 5,000 Years' by David Graeber; the classic 'Black Flame', co-written by Michael Schmidt and Lucien van der Walt; the 2nd edition of 'The Philosophy of Punk' by Craig O'Hara; and several art books, including 'Reproduce and Revolt! A Graphic Toolbox for the 21st Century Activist' - a book with over 300 social justice and political activism illustrations and graphics.

 We also have ready for 2014 'Just Seeds' and 'Slingshot' planners and diaries:

Friday, 8 November 2013

Film Screening: No Advantage

Film Screening and Discussion on the Bogey of the 'Boat People'

People around the world mourned the tragedy of Lampedusa when several hundred people drowned after their boat capsized only a few hundred metres off the coast of the Italian Island. But deaths at sea of people seeking asylum should not be news. Hundreds of people seeking asylum have already drowned in the Mediterranean and hundreds have drowned in the waters between Indonesia and Australia. Just the week before Lampedusa nearly 80 people drowned making the journey to Australia.

However, instead of welcoming and assisting refugees, the focus both in Europe and this part of the world is to prevent the arrival of asylum seekers – irrespective of the 1951 UN Convention on Refugees.

Australia has a particularly bad record and now has the dubious honour of practising both mandatory detention and mandatory exclusion for all asylum seekers; if the NZ National Government has its way here, we will be following suit and in the future we could also easily abolish the right to seek asylum.

Come and watch 'No Advantage: Inside Australia’s Offshore Processing Centres', a 2013 documentary exposing the conditions inside Australia's off-shore detention centres, and come and discuss migration practice and policy.

Note: This film was originally scheduled to be shown in June but had to be cancelled at short notice.

When: Friday, 15 November 2013
Where: People’s Cinema, 57 Manners St, Wellington
Remember, to seek asylum is not a crime.
No one chooses to be a refugee.

Take a stance. 

Monday, 4 November 2013

1913 Great Strike

It is a hundred years since the Great Strike took place and the Labour History Project are coordinating a series of events and lectures in Wellington, including Sunday morning guided walks through downtown Wellington. More details can be found at

The Freedom Shop has several books and zines, both about the Great Strike and the events surrounding it, including Revolution: The 1913 Great Strike in New Zealand. Edited by Melanie Nolan, Revolution came out of a 2003 conference organised by the then Trade Union History Project to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the strike.

Other books and zines of particular interest to those wanting more information about the Great Strike, include Peter Steiner's Industrial Unionism, a pamphlet about the IWW community in New Zealand in the early 1900s, and Jared Davidson's Sewing Freedom: Philip Josephs, Transnationalism & Early New Zealand Anarchism. 

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Film Screening in Support of Marie Mason

Wellington people are showing a screening of 'If a Tree Falls' in support of Marie Mason, an imprisoned activist in the United States.
The film will be shown at:
the People's Cinema on on Friday, 25 October 2013 at 6.30pm.

"Our world is faced with some tremendous problems: climate change, war, racism, sexism, colonialism, pollution, deforestation, genetic engineering, corporate exploitation...the list could go on and on. There are millions of people who have taken action to stop these in-justices and bring about a better world. Many of them are sitting in prisons serving long and difficult sentences for standing up for their belief in justice, their desire to stop a wrong or for daring to fight back against systematic oppression and exploitation.
From the United States, to Russia to New Zealand and everywhere in between, political prisoners, those who have been imprisoned for holding, advocating or acting on dissenting political views, are with us and are part of our social struggles.
For those of us who care about these wider social issues, we have a responsibility to stand in solidarity with political prisoners. We have a responsibility to provide aid and support to them, and to struggle for their freedom. They are the imprisoned captives of injustice."

The Freedom Shop has zines and books about prison, prison abolition and 'political' prisoners.

For more info about Marie Mason, check out

Preview the film 'If a Tree Falls': a story of the Earth Liberation Front

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Reds & Wobblies - a talk by Jared Davidson

On Tuesday, October 22, at 5.30pm at the National Library, corner Molesworth & Aitken St, Wgtn, as part of the centenary of the 1913 Great Strike, Jared Davidson is giving a talk on working-class radicalism and the state between 1915 and 1925.
It was during these years that the NZ Government enforced a strict censorship regime to fight what they perceived as the threat of political and industrial unrest. The mail, literature, and speeches of radicals – especially the Industrial Workers of the World (known as the Wobblies) – came under state scrutiny, and led to raids, arrests, and deportation of those deemed seditious.

The talk by Jared will ‘Reds & Wobblies’ highlight the actions of a government fearful of social revolution in a time of worldwide turbulence, and discuss the working-class radicalism that caused such fears – from IWW stickers to the deportation of Noel Lyons.
Jared is the author of two books stocked by the Freedom Shop: 'Sewing Freedom' and 'Remains to Be Seen'.

 Both books focus on the growth of anarchism in the early 20th century in New Zealand, giving a glimpse into the lives of the many migrant workers here, early transnationalism and anarchism.

To find out more about the 1913 Strike Centenary events, have a read of the 1913 Strike web page.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Film Screening: The Wobblies

"Fire Your Boss!"... "Abolish the wage system!"

On the centenary of the Great Strike of 1913, we invite you to listen to the voices of the 'Industrial Workers of the World'. Started in 1905 under the motto “an injury to one is an injury to all, the IWW was the only union open to all trades and to men and to women; and the only union (past and present) to state it is the historic mission of the working class to do away with capitalism.” 
An IWW branch was established in Wellington in 1907, and IWW members were involved in many of the early militant labour unions and struggles here, including the Great Strike.

The Wobblies (1979; Stewart Bird, Deborah Shaffer) provides an overview of the IWW (Industrial Workers of the World), complete with archival footage, loads of interviews, Wobbly art and songs.

Further information about events organised in Wellington to mark the 1913 Great Strike can be found here:

When: Friday, 18 October 2013
Where: People’s Cinema, 57 Manners St, Wellington
Time: 6.30pm 

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

imminent rebellion

The latest edition of 'imminent rebellion' is here.  

Imminent Rebellion is an irregular anarchist journal published by Rebel Press. This issue includes:
  • ‘Pirates’ vs Pirates: Somalia through the eyes of a German court 
  • Lizard’s Revenge - action against BHP's uranium mine at Olympic Dam in South Australia
  • Loomio: Making self-organised governance convenient
  • The Trial - a description of the 'Urewera 4' trial
  • Never Ceded: An interview with Marianne Mackay
  • Hot and Hotter: The Sex Worker Freedom Festival
  • Up a Mighty River Without a Paddle
  • Unpicking Arcadia: Philip Josephs and early NZ anarchism
  • An Interview with the Kurdish Anarchist Forum
  • The Aftermath: The fight to save Glen Innes

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

New books from Huia

We have a few new books from Huia Publishers at special prices:
  • At the Heart of Hiruharama by Isabel Waiti-Mulholland
  • Ngati Ruanui: A History by Tony Sole
  • Ocean Roads by James George 
  • The Beating Heart: A Political and Socio-economic History of Te Arawa by Vincent O Malley
  • The Smell of the Moon by Mark Kneubuhl
  • Te Wiremuu - Henry WIlliams: Early Years in the North by Caroline Fitzgerald
  • Wiremu Tamihana by Evelyn Stokes
  • Zhu Mao by Mark Sweet

Film screening: The Coconut Revolution

Mining and drilling is experiencing a resurgence with plans for more open cast mines and deep sea oil drilling rearing their ugly heads. Join us to see a film that tells a story of resistance against Rio Tinto, one of the world’s biggest mining companies.

The Coconut Revolution is the story of the extraordinary struggle of the Bougainville Revolutionary Army for their land, their culture and their independence – against an overwhelming Papua New Guinea army, backed by the Australian government and the billions of Rio Tinto.
Friday, 20 September 2013, 6:30pm at the People’s Cinema, 57 Manners St, Wellington

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

'Rebellion' Postponed - for now

The screening of 'Rebellion' was postponed due to the earthquake - we will be re-scheduling it and will let people know of the new date. In the meantime, if people know of any videos or documentaries that they would like to see, send us an email at or pop into the Shop and have a talk with one of us. The opening hours are listed to the right of this page.

Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Film Screening: Rebellion

Rebellion (Original: L'Ordre et la Morale)

Mathieu Kassovitz says his first film La Haine was about police brutality, while Rebellion is about government brutality.

“It’s April 1988 on the Ouvéa Island in the French colony of New Caledonia. 30 police are kidnapped by Kanak separatists and in response 300 special-forces operatives are sent in to restore order. To avoid unnecessary conflict, Philippe Legorjus (Mathieu Kassovitz), the captain of an elite counter-terrorism police unit, is sent in to the heart of the rebel base to negotiate a peaceful solution. But against the highly pressured backdrop of presidential elections in France, the stakes are high and all bets are off. Mathieu Kassovitz (La Haine) makes a powerful comeback in front of and behind the camera with this violent thriller, based on true events.” Craig Grobler, The EstablishingShot.

Friday, 16 August 2013, 6:30pm at the People’s Cinema, 57 Manners St.

Monday, 1 July 2013

Film Screening: Living Utopia

Living Utopia (Original, 1997: Vivir la utopía. El anarquismo en Espana)

Escape the cold Wellington winter and join us to remember one of the great moments of working class history, the sunny days of July 1936 when ordinary Spaniards seized control of their lives, fought fascism and demonstrated how pleasant life could be when capitalism and the state are consigned to the dustbin.

What: Living Utopia: Anarchism in Spain
When: Friday 19 July 2013
Where: People’s Cinema, 57 Manners St, (across the road from McDonalds), Wellington
Time: 6:30 pm

Saturday, 29 June 2013

New Zines, New Books

The shelves are full - we've done a re-run of old popular zines, printed some new ones, and we've also have just received an order of new books.

Some of the new zines include 'The Sun Still Rises' by the imprisoned members of the Conspiracy of Cells of Fire; the Lexicon pamphlet series by the Institute for Anarchist Studies and 'Hunter Gather' by Crimethinc.

Reprinted zines include a new edition of 'Hot Pantz', the wonderful do-it-yourself gynecology zine that begins with the statement:
"Patriarchy sucks. It's robbed us of our autonomy and much of our history. We believe that it's integral for women to be aware and in control of our own bodies. The recipes we present here have been known for centuries, passed down from mother to daughter, and have survived the censorship of the witch hunts. Our intent is simple and practical: to help break away from the medical establishment's tentacular grip on our bodies and our approaches to health and healing."

We've also got 'Emma Goldman on Prisons', 'Anarchism: What it is and what it isn't' by Chaz Bufe and 'Methods of Anarcho-Syndicalsim' by Rudolf Rocker.

The new books include Rudolf's autobiography, 'The London Years' which covers in particular the times of the London 1912 strikes and Rocker's internment during WW1. Another classic we have is 'Property is Theft! A Pierre-Joseph Proudhon Reader' put together by Iain McKay, the editor of An Anarchist FAQ.

Other new books include 'Against Equality: Queer Critiques of Gay Marriage' which challenges the notion of fighting for equality and the desire to have equality in conservative systems and institutions, such as marriage, that oppress people. This is just one of three books that we have by the Against Equality group, the two others in this handy pocket-sized set are 'Don't Ask to Fight Their Wars' and 'Prisons Will Not Protect You'.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Film screening: "No Advantage"

We are hosting a film screening and discussion evening on Friday, 21 June at the People’s Cinema. 

On June 13, parliament passed the Immigration Amendment Bill into law - just in time for World Refugee Day on June 20. The new law allows the mass detention of groups of asylum seekers, should they ever manage to arrive in here. 

The changes bring New Zealand in line with Australia’s much condemned mandatory offshore detention regime. On top of that, earlier this year John Key signed an agreement with Julia Gillard to take 150 asylum seekers off Australia, further reducing New Zealand’s already small annual quota of 750 UN refugees and making New Zealand complicit in Australia’s human rights violations. 

In order to show what mass detention looks like, we will screen the documentary “No Advantage: Inside Australia’s Offshore Processing Centres”, which exposes the conditions inside the detention centres on Nauru and Manus Island. 

When: Friday, June 21, 2013, 6:30pm
Where: People’s Cinema, 57 Manners St, Wellington City
Entry by Koha.
Links: The People's Cinema

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Book launch - Sewing Freedom: a new book on early NZ anarchism


Sewing Freedom, by Jared Davidson, is the first in-depth study of anarchism in New Zealand during the turbulent years of the early 20th century—a time of wildcat strikes, industrial warfare and a radical working class counter-culture. Interweaving biography, cultural history and an array of archival sources, this engaging account unravels the anarchist-cum-bomber stereotype by piecing together the life of Philip Josephs—a Latvian-born Jewish tailor, anti-militarist and founder of the Wellington Freedom Group. Anarchists like Josephs not only existed in the ‘Workingman’s Paradise’ that was New Zealand, but were a lively part of its labour movement and the class struggle that swept through the country, imparting uncredited influence and ideas. Sewing Freedom places this neglected movement within the global anarchist upsurge, and unearths the colourful activities of New Zealand’s most radical advocates for social and economic change.

More information on the book, a sampler, and reviews, can be found at

WHEN: Wednesday 15 May - 5.30PM
WHERE: The Boardroom, Museum of Wellington City & Sea, Queens Wharf, Jervois Quay
Books will be on sale for $15 cash on the night.
Free entry. Nibbles and drinks provided.

“Sewing Freedom works on several levels. It is a meticulous biography, a portrait of an era, a sophisticated discussion of anarchist philosophy and activism, and an evocation of radical lives and ideas in their context. Davidson has designed a fresh, crisp book with visual impact, nicely enhanced by Alec Icky Dunn’s wonderful sketches... This beautifully-executed book tells an important story in New Zealand’s political history.” - Chris Brickell, Associate Professor of Gender Studies at Otago University and author of Mates and Lovers

Friday, 26 April 2013

New Books

We have new stock in the Shop, including:
  • Hawaii 1778--1958, From Western Discovery to Statehood - J. Gerlach
  • The Right to be Lazy. Paul LaFargue (Author)
  • Quiet Rumours: An Anarcha-Feminist Reader, New Edition - Dark Star Collective
  • Disassembly Required: A Field Guide to Actually Existing Capitalism - Geoff Mann
  • Queering Anarchism: Addressing and Undressing Power and Desire - C. B. Daring
  • A Poetics of Resistance, The Revolutionary Public Relations of the Zapatista Insurgency - Jeff Conant (Author)
  • Arab Spring, Libyan Winter - Vijay Prashad
  • Decolonizing Anarchism: An Antiauthoritarian History of India's Liberation Struggle - Maia Ramnath
  • The Congo: A European Invention - J. Gerlach
  • Mythmakers & Lawbreakers: Anarchist Writers on Fiction - Margaret Killjoy (Editor)
  • Partisanas: Women in the Armed Resistance to Fascism and German Occupation (1936--1945) - Ingrid Strobl
  • Pacifism as Pathology: Reflections on the Role of Armed Struggle in North America (2nd edition) - Ward Churchill
  • Eyes to the South. French Anarchists & Algeria. David Porter
  • Peace, Love & Petrol Bombs. A Novel. D.D. Johnston (Author)
  • Revolt and Crisis in Greece. Between a Present Yet to Pass and a Future Still to Come. Dimitris Dalakoglou (Editor)
  • In the Crossfire. Adventures of a Vietnamese Revolutionary. Ngo Van, Hélène Fleury (Editor)
  • How the Economy Was Lost. The War of the Worlds. Paul Craig Roberts
  • Come Hell or High Water. A Handbook on Collective Process Gone Awry. Richard Singer
  • Another Dinner is Possible. Recipes for Food and Thought. Mike, Isy
  • My Mother Wears Combat Boots. A Parenting Guide for the Rest of Us. Jessica Mills
  • No Gods No Masters. Daniel Guerin
  • Subversion of Politics. European Autonomous Social Movements And The Decolonization Of Everyday Life. George Katsiaficas

Sunday, 24 February 2013

New Order

We are contemplating a new order of books and zines, if you have a title you think we should stock - flick us an email at