Accumulation, control and contingency: Towards a critical understanding of intellectual property rights’ ‘piracy’

Yiannis Mylonas


This article problematizes piracy a) as a hegemonic discourse and technology of control, aiming to securitize late capitalist accumulation; b) as a practice developed by the multitudes that is compatible to post–Fordist mode of production and to neoliberal norms; and, c) as resistance to dominant mode of late capitalist production, distribution and consumption of immaterial goods. The article addresses and criticizes capitalism’s ‘organic’ and strategic colonization of fundamental social commons, such as culture, intellectual goods, as well as human creativity and communication, by looking at the ideological, institutional and material processes that reproduce the capitalist ‘machine’. This paper concludes by considering the possibility of overcoming the capitalist approach to commons, through the politicization of IPR as well as through the connection of the problem they pose to broader social perspectives, confronting capitalism — in its post political disguises — politically.

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