What is the Beast?
“The Beast” is an often used metaphor for the system of inequality, exploitation, destruction and oppression we live in and struggle against, across history, around the globe, and in our own colonized minds and bodies. Capitalism and imperialism are the Beast, but the Beast also encompasses older social inequalities, irrationalities, isms and cruelties that the current system adopts and adapts to its purposes.
“The Belly of the Beast” is that space of multifarious, concrete, everyday, on-the-ground manifestations of the system currently dominating the globe within a larger framework entrapping us in a system of exploitation, inequality, violence and oppression. It is the larger context of our particular struggles and issues.
Having a simple, evocative way to sum up what we’re fighting against sidesteps ideological pitfalls, while being completely clear that we are talking about a system that is inhuman in its basic nature, anti-life for all of us. While acknowledging people’s ability to survive and do many great things within its confines, and recognizing that despair and its variants within our colonized minds (colonized by the Beast) may suggest otherwise to us, the underlying conviction of the activist community is that good life on Earth is incompatible with the Beast.
The posts in this category explore how activists confront the Beast, directly, in social movements, and in their daily lives in its belly.