The Longo Mai movement is a group of agricultural cooperatives with a basic grass-roots, alternative, rural, laic and sustainable ideology. It has its origins in Austria, Germany, Switzerland and France. Young people from the “generation 68” founded the first settlement in 1973 in France (“Longo maï” in Provençal means “may it last long”). They focused on living together, based on self-administration and agricultural self-sufficiency. In addition, they initiated many social projects.
Longo-mai today has changed and grown – the political context and reality of our time too – to imagine that the problems present in our society can be resolved or answered by similar social and economic experiments alone is surely not a realistic consideration. The character and spirit of Longo mai however offers us a tangible vision and outlook to a possible, different and responsible, ecological and economical sustainable, democratic, fair society. In front of increasing major economic, social and environmental degradation, violence, repression and control by the State and Police, in front of major centralization of powers in a hand of few oligarchs and special interest groups, in front of a growing general disorientation and precarious work-relationships as unemployment, the search for alternative solutions in Society is unavoidable and necessary.
One of the many objectives and aims of Longo-mai is and always has been the agricultural reform. The source of its engagements lies in the concrete activities of various co-operatives and in the local and regional collaboration with similar group of interest and organizations as the trial to bring this work into a wider, national and international context. The publication of books, articles and press via a newspaper called European Citzienship Forum (EuropaeischerBuergerForum) along with the political engagement and regular meetings with other organization as Via Campesina certainly represents a great step forward and hope towards a truly sustainable, democratic and peaceful civil society.