There is another emerging truth which Jack London ignored, to which this generation is especially sensitive: that the mode of revolution helps determine its future course. A "revolution" accomplished by the ballot box perpetuates the notion that real change can come about by manipulating papers, rather than by people struggling to change their personal lives, their immediate relationships, their communities, their work. Revolutions by force of arms carry forward into the new society that ruthlessness which London himself depicts, and too readily accepts, in The Iron Heel. Perhaps we have learned enough in the past half century to being to think of a novel approach to the revolution.
A new mode of revolution would go far beyond the ballot box. People everywhere would begin to live cooperatively, not in mass organizations which override individual feelings, but in small groups based on working together, resisting the state together. In such groups, new relationships of intimacy and cooperation, born of common struggles, could develop between black and white, male and female, old and young. All this, in the midst of an inhuman society, while fighting to change that society.
People would work as cultural and political guerrillas, mobile, imaginative, so embedded in the lower structures of the society, and in its crevices, in so many places, as to be invulnerable to the crude, massed power of the state. If crushed in one place, these affinity groups would rise again in ten other places, until there were so many changed minds, so many changed ways of living, that the revolution would not be defeated because it would be already here. The old structures, despite their wealth and arms, would flail ineffectually at such a revolution, and then begin to wither, because their sustenance--the labor that operates them, the minds that accept them--had turned to other things.