The Devil's Anarchy - A lecture about the anarchic life of pirates

Monday, 21 March

The Devil's Anarchy - A lecture about the anarchic life of pirates

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Who better to invite to our little pirate-dungeon than a piratologist? Stephen Snelders is author of 'The Devil's Anarchy', a book that examines the histories of two 17th-century Dutch pirates Claes Gerritszoon Compaen and Jan Erasmus Reyning. Claes Compaen claimed to have stolen over 350 vessels, was pardoned by the Dutch government and returned as a wealthy man to his home-city Oostzaan. Jan Erasmus Reyning hit the seas at age of twelve and ended up joining the Brethren of the Coast.

In this short lecture Stephen Snelders will examine the politics of piracy. How and why did some of the maritime proletarians in the seventeenth and early eighteenth century become pirates? How were they organized and how did they make decisions? How did they live their everyday lifes? And why do pirates continue to spark the imagination of so many?

"Snelders has made a major contribution to piratology in English by introducing certain rare Dutch sources full of anecdote and illumination. But he has contributed even more to the field of radical piratology as envisioned by my friend the late English anarchist Larry Law, or the late William S. Burroughs - pirate as a libertarian hero, pirate as symbolic focus for anti-Capital's desire. Rimbaud might've dreamed something like this when he was twelve. But here it is at last,a book of true stories." - Peter Lamborn Wilson (/hakim bey)"

Date & Time: 

Monday, 21 March, 2016 - 20:00


  • discussion/presentation


  • free
Het Spinhuis - Onder de Brug
Singel 165A
pirate dungeon
1012 VK Amsterdam


Evicted squat

This is the second edition of the Spinhuis. This time it's under the bridge. This is a squatted autonomous student space that functions as an academic café.


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