The Anarchist is an anti-capitalist, anti-colonial cafe, shop, and radical community space on the stolen and occupied territory of many indigenous nations and peoples. As trendy, and very occassionally meaningful, as land acknowledgments are, I believe that the task of listing all those whose land this rightfully is is frought with problems. What matters most, in my opinion, is to explicitly acknowledge that this land is under the violent and unjust occupation of a colonial state and its settler society, and to commit to tangibly supporting the end of that occupation, abolition of that state and society, and return of the land to those from whom it was stolen.
The Anarchist is a one person business, founded by a broke barista, hoping to grow into a worker owned and operated co-op. It came about by chance, with no concrete plan for the quintessential radical business, ideologically pure and beyond criticism. As such, it makes absolutely no claim to being any of those things. It's a messy, organic experiment in what a small business can become while trying to be informed by anarchist ideas. I fundamentally count on the questions, suggestions, criticisms, and collaboration of the community, especially future worker-owners, to turn the place into more than any one person could imagine.
Founded on a huge amount of experience at the cafe level of the specialty coffee industry (harbinger of gentrification around the globe) I aim to serve the most delicious "third wave" coffee drinks and baked goods and trendy light roast beans, while constantly looking for ways to undermine the plethora of toxic, oppressive, exclusive parts of the standard formula. I hope to be a subversive alternative to what we're all used to, but it's a learning process.
No purchase or permission is required to use the washroom or hang out in the cafe.
In addition to the the usual food and drinks, I carry a selection of radical books, art, stickers, pins, buttons, keychains, jewellery, clothing, tote bags, and hopefully much more in the future. Painfully aware of the danger of commodifying radical politics, I try to work with small, relatively ethical (it's all relative in capitalism) supplier-creators, keeping prices as low as possible, and focussing on getting radical ideas and messages into the hands of anyone who wants them.