Nazan Üstündağ interviews Havin Guneser, a spokesperson of the International Initiative “Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan—Peace in Kurdistan” about the book Building Free Life: Dialogues with Öcalan, published by PM Press in 2020.  

Introducing Building Free Life: Dialogues with Öcalan from Peace in Kurdistan on Vimeo.

Havin explains the origin of the book, the challenges of creating a dialogue between its contributors and Abdullah Öcalan, imprisoned by the Turkish state since 1999, and held in solitary confinement since 2015, and introduces some of the ideas explored
About the book:

Öcalan’s prison writings have mobilized tens of thousands of people and inspired a revolution in the making in Rojava, northern Syria, while also penetrating the insular walls of academia and triggering debate and reflection among countless scholars. But how do you engage in a meaningful dialogue with Abdullah Öcalan when he has been held in total isolation since April 2015? You compile a book of essays written by a globally diverse cast of the most imaginative luminaries of our time, send it to Öcalan’s jailers, and hope that they deliver it to him.

Featured in this extraordinary volume are over a dozen writers, activists, dreamers, and scholars whose ideas have been investigated in Öcalan’s own writings. Now these same people have the unique opportunity to enter into a dialogue with his ideas. Building Free Life is a rich exploration of the most critical issues facing humanity today. In the broad sweep of this dialogue, the contributors explore topics ranging from democratic confederalism to women’s revolution, from the philosophy of history to the crisis of the capitalist system, from religion to Marxism and anarchism,

To buy a copy of Building Free Life:
In North America:
In Europe and RoW:
or ask your local independent bookshop to order it in for you
For more information about the International Initiative, visit:

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Peace in Kurdistan

Campaign for a political solution of the Kurdish Question


Contacts Estella Schmid: 07846 666 804 & Melanie Gingell: 07572 430903


Patrons: John Austin, Baroness Blower of Starch Green, former GS NUT, Prof Bill Bowring, Julie Christie, Noam Chomsky, Jeremy Corbyn MP,  Prof Mary Davis, Lord Dholakia, Simon Dubbins, UNITE International Director,  Jill Evans, former MEP, Desmond Fernandes, Lindsey German, Convenor STWC, Melanie Gingell, Christopher Gingell, Prof Dr. Michael Gunter, Secretary-General, EU Turkey Civic Commission (EUTCC), Rahila Gupta, journalist, Nick Hildyard, policy advisor,  Dafydd Iwan, Former President Plaid Cymru, James Kelman, Bruce Kent, Jean Lambert, former MEP, Dr Les Levidow, Open University, Elfyn Llwyd, Aonghas MacNeacail, Scottish Gaelic poet, Mike Mansfield QC, David Morgan, journalist, Doug Nicholls, General Secretary, GFTU, Dr. Jessica Ayesha Northey, Sinn Fein MLA Conor Murphy, Dr Thomas Jeffrey Miley, Kate Osamor MP, Margaret Owen OBE, Ali Gul Ozbek, Former Councillor and Mayor of Haringey; Gareth Peirce, Dr Felix Padel, Maxine Peake, actor, Dr Thomas Phillips, Liverpool John Moores University, Trevor Rayne, writer, Joe Ryan, Tony Simpson, Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation, Stephen Smellie, PIK Trade Union Liaison Officer, Jonathan Steele, journalist,  Steve Sweeney, journalist,  Gianni Tognoni, General Secretary Permanent People’s Tribunal, Dr Tove Skutnabb-Kangas, Dr Tom Wakeford, Dr Derek Wall, Julie Ward, former MEP, Kariane Westrheim, Chair, EU Turkey Civic Commission (EUTCC); Hywel Williams MP.