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AK Press

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AK Press
Founded1987; 37 years ago (1987)
FounderRamsey Kanaan
Country of originUnited States
Headquarters locationChico, California
DistributionConsortium Book Sales & Distribution (US)[1]
Turnaround Publisher Services (UK)[2]
Publication typesBooks
Nonfiction topicsRadical left and anarchist literature
Official websitewww.akpress.org and www.akuk.com

AK Press is a worker-managed, independent publisher and book distributor that specializes in publishing books about anarchism and the radical left. Operated out of Chico, California, with a branch in Edinburgh, Scotland, the company is collectively owned.


AK was founded in Stirling, Scotland, by Ramsey Kanaan in 1987 as a small mail-order distribution outlet, eventually expanding into independent publishing and moving the Scotland base of operations to Edinburgh, Scotland, and later opening a US base of operations in Oakland, California. The press was named for Kanaan's mother, Ann Kanaan.[3] Kanaan and several other members of AK Press left in 2007 to form PM Press.[4][5]

After operating out of the Bay Area for decades, in March 2015, a deadly fire at a warehouse complex in West Oakland, California, damaged AK Press's warehouse and prompted the press to relocate to their present base in Chico.[6][7]

In 2020, AK Press joined as a founding member of the Radical Publishers' Alliance, a group of politically oriented book publishers and magazines around the world.[8]


AK Press is organized as a collective, akin to a workers' co-operative. The press is owned by all members of the collective, works without bosses or hierarchy, and uses collective decision-making processes, following anarchist principles.[9]

Works published by AK Press include classic anarchist texts by Peter Kropotkin, Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, Errico Malatesta, Emma Goldman, Alexander Berkman, and Voltairine de Cleyre, as well books on the history of anarchism and of anarchist struggles like the Spanish Revolution and Nestor Makhno. They also publish on topics related to ongoing anti-fascism and contemporary anarchism, such as prison abolition, the environmental movement, anti-capitalism, feminism, and anti-racism.[10] Noted authors include Noam Chomsky, Murray Bookchin, David Graeber, and Harsha Walia.

AK Press regularly publishes in collaboration with the Institute for Anarchist Studies, the Kate Sharpley Library, and World War 3 Illustrated. They also publish the Emergent Strategy Series, edited by adrienne maree brown and inspired by her book of the same name, including books by queer Black feminists Alexis Pauline Gumbs and Alexis de Veaux. Their Black Dawn series is noted for releasing speculative fiction with anarchist and political themes, including books by Margaret Killjoy and adrienne maree brown, among others.[11]

In both the US and UK, the business tables at anarchist bookfairs, conferences, activist gatherings, and literary festivals. The company also sells clothing, buttons, stickers, and various other related items.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Consortium Book Sales & Distribution | Our Publishers". Retrieved 2 December 2017.
  2. ^ "Publishers Representatives | Publishers Distributors". Turnaround Publisher Services. Archived from the original on 1 July 2017. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
  3. ^ Kanaan, Ramsey (28 February 2005). "Part 1: What's Wrong With the American Anarchist Movement?". Melbourne Indymedia. Archived from the original on 27 April 2005. Retrieved 9 January 2017.
  4. ^ Swan, Rachel (18 February 2009). "Beyond Anarchy at PM Press". East Bay Express.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  5. ^ Carroll, Tobias (26 August 2008). "I've Got a Name: Music, Radical Politics, and AK Press". yourbestguess.com. Archived from the original on 18 July 2011. Retrieved 9 January 2017.
  6. ^ Kellogg, Carolyn (24 March 2015). "Oakland's AK Press sustains fire damage". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 7 September 2019.
  7. ^ BondGraham, Darwin (13 December 2016). "Former AK Press Warehouse Sold to 'Tech Co-Op' Developer Who Demolished 1919 Market". East Bay Express. Retrieved 7 September 2019.
  8. ^ Milliot, Jim (29 April 2020). "Left-Wing Indie Publishers Form Coalition". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved 8 February 2023.
  9. ^ About – AK Press, akpress.org, retrieved 20 November 2023
  10. ^ "Published by AK Press". akpress.org. Retrieved 20 November 2023.
  11. ^ Eds (9 June 2024). "Interview: Radon and the new wave of anarchist sci-fi". Freedom News. Retrieved 20 June 2024.

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