The Anarchist Library at Infokafee Bollox in Amsterdam

Located in the beautiful neighbourhood of Amsterdam Zuid, very close to Vondelpark, De Binnenpret is a complex of buildings that houses various cultural and political initiatives. Among these, the creation of an anarchist library has allowed to access a different type of information which alternates social criticism with the creation of solutions to the problems we encounter in the neo-capitalistic era.

The whole complex has a long history. Born as a squat in 1984 after the eviction of an occupied building in the city center, it managed to resist to the criminalisation of squats in 2010 becoming, in the end, legalised. De Binnenpret is now a place in which different organisations collaborate to promote activities ranging from music to theatre, literature and social engagement.

As a cultural institution it contributes significantly to the individual and social development. The library, managed by AGA (Anarchist Group Amsterdam), is open every Saturday from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and every Monday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Infokafee Bollox, right behind the OCCII. The book room is surrounded by a garden where you can read, discuss and drink something; there is also a bar, whose proceeds go to support local initiatives. It is possible to access books and magazines in several languages (English, Turkish, Spanish, Dutch, French and German) and borrow one of them for a small deposit. Although most of the material is related to the anarchist theory, the collection is extensive and crosses different subjects such as history, philosophy, art and more. The common perspective is certainly anti-authoritarian and anti-racist.

AGA is a network that connects activists from all over the world. The collective has a strong social purpose: contributing to the creation of a better society. As we can read on its website, AGA ”fights for self’-government and a world without exploitation or oppression in which production takes place as a need and not for profit”. On the website you can find all the activities of the group and read their publications, which also give practical information about Dutch society (e.g., labour law, how to find an accommodation, etc.). In November there will be a great event organised by the group – the Anarchist Book Fair 2019.    Federica Veccari,    August 3rd