The Party Without Bosses: Lessons on Anti-Capitalism from Félix Guattari and Luís Inácio 'Lula' da Silva


87 pages
Contains Bibliography
ISBN 1-894037-18-9
DDC 981.06'3'092




Reviewed by J.H. Galloway

J.H. Galloway is a professor of geography at the University of Toronto.


This small book concerns an intellectual encounter between Félix
Guattari (1930–1992), a French “psychoanalyst and activist,” and
Luнs Inбcio da Silva, who, at the time of the encounter, was the trade
union leader of the Partido dos Trabalhadores (PT), or Workers’ Party,
and who is now the president of Brazil. He is known to one and all in
Brazil as “Lula.” The climax of this encounter between theoretician
and politician was an interview Lula granted to Guattari in 1982 in Sгo
Paulo and now long out of print.

Gary Genosko is an authority on Guattari. While engaged in research in
Paris, he came across the Portuguese text of the interview and decided
it was worth publishing in English. It is the third and final chapter in
this book. The interview had to be set in a context, and this Genosko
provides in the first chapter. He introduces Guattari “as an
anti-globalization theorist of the first order and a neglected figure in
anticapitalist struggles,” and discusses his theories in relation to
left-wing politics in Brazil and particularly to those of Lula’s PT.
The second chapter is an account from the PT’s perspective of the 2002
election that brought Lula to power. The account is almost a bit of a
space filler and perhaps should have come after the interview rather
than before it. The interview makes for rather curious reading: it is an
obviously dated exchange between a French intellectual and a practical

The book will interest students of Guattari’s political theories.
Brazilianists may find the interview worth the read for Lula’s
comments on political matters 20 years ago. But both for the 2002
election and for Lula’s views in 1982, the Brazilian press will
probably prove a richer source.


Genosko, Gary., “The Party Without Bosses: Lessons on Anti-Capitalism from Félix Guattari and Luís Inácio 'Lula' da Silva,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed May 20, 2024,