Publisher: AK Press
Released: June 2, 2020
Oscar Wilde is remembered as a wit and a dandy, as a gay martyr, and as a brilliant writer, but his philosophical depth and political radicalism are often forgotten. Resist Everything Except Temptation locates Wilde in the tradition of left-wing anarchism, and argues that only when we take his politics seriously can we begin to understand the man, his life, and his work. Drawing from literary, historical, and biographical evidence, including archival research, the book outlines the philosophical influences and political implications of Wilde's ideas on art, sex, morality, violence, and above all, individualism.
Williams raises questions about the relationships between culture and politics, between utopian aspirations and practical programs, and between individualism, group identity, and class struggle. The resulting volume represents, not merely a historical curiosity, but a contribution to current debates within political theory and a salvo in the broader culture wars.
Praise for Resist Everything Except Temptation
"This book is timely, as anarchists and anti-fascists are being targeted as terrorists by President Donald Trump, who shows no understanding of what anarchists might profess... As a person who creates art for the express purpose of positive cultural change, I believe “Resist Everything but Temptation” offers a way of framing creative work that can lead us to its more conscious political use and allow us to enjoy and explore it more deeply."
—Kimberly Dark for Ms. Magazine
Kristian Williams is the author of several books, including Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America and Between the Bullet and the Lie: Essays on Orwell.
Alan Moore is the creator of the graphic novels Lost Girls, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, and From Hell. His other work includes the novels Voice of the Fire and Jerusalem, and (with Mitch Jenkins) the short film series The Show.