Review: Steal This Book, by Abbie Hoffman

By Psyche | April 22, 2003

Steal This Book, by Abbie Hoffman
Four Walls Eight Windows, 156858217X, 318 pp. (including index), 1998, 2000 Edition

Steal This Book was a revolutionary work of its time, written by Hoffman in jail, a manual for the revolution that was supposed to come, but didn’t.

Though absolutely no respect is given to those in law enforcement, Hoffman does preach respect for other revolutionaries and those who are merely the employees of those you’re ripping off. A thoughtful revolutionary.

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Learn how to get virtually everything your anarchistic little heart could desire free: food, clothing, furniture, land, entertainment – the usual gear, but also ranging to the more bizarre: such as free elk or buffalo – even ghosts!

Advice on demonstration fashion necessities such as clothing, helmets, pads, gas mask and more. What to buy, what to look for, where to buy. Legal advice, shop lifting, hot to build various bombs out of every day household materials – aided with helpful diagrams and illustrations. Numerous black and white photographs illustrate ways to rip off the system and aid the revolution. Nifty advice on drug selling, buying, growing and giving it away.

Also included is a brief biography of Hoffman, giving you further insight into the creative and inspiring mind behind his words, and a forward by Lisa Fithian and Al Giordano, other revolutionaries who aided Hoffman in his cause.

Though some techniques and stores/centres are outdated, this is still a pretty spiffy tome. Written in an accessible and inspiring tone, this book is often quite funny at times, if only from the sheer shock value of what he proposes. Valuable as a historical document of its times, as well as a guide for many ways you can still rip off the system.

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