The Zapatista National Liberation Army rose up in arms January 1st, 1994 to

protest the North American Free Trade Agreement, which protected capitalists’ interests

and destroyed the livelihood and lands of the indigenous of Mexico. After failed

attempts at creating Peace Accords with the Mexican government and numerous human

rights violations perpetrated on indigenous communities by military and paramilitary

forces, the Zapatistas began the construction of autonomous communities in rebellion.

In June of 2005, the EZLN published the Sixth Declaration of the Selva

Lancandona, an invitation to all of those who considered themselves “from below and to

the left” to join in the global struggle against capitalism and for humanity. This paper

attempts to answer: “How do urban grassroots organizations in the United States

view their adherency to the Sixth Declaration of the Selva Lancadona?” Grassroots

groups in the U.S. mobilized to manifest the heart and word of the document by working

in solidarity with the Zapatistas and other adherents to began the process of defining and

creating collective, non-heirarchical, anti-capitalist autonomous spaces. These groups are

struggling against the dominant political, social and economic practice of the United

States and work to raise conciousness and support for popular people’s struggle while

addressing the difficulties of building autonomy in an urban venue. This paper examines

the relationship with these adherents to the Sixth Declaration and how they are defining

and practicing solidarity and autonomy in their own communities.


Inequality and Stratification | Military and Veterans Studies | Politics and Social Change