From BASTARD Conference
We are running a little late but, as you can probably imagine, finding a place to hold an anarchist theory conference isn't as easy as it used to be. In our case it is as much about aging as it is about the horrorshow of land pricing but either way we now have a venue. The Omni Commons will be hosting the 2016 Berkeley Anarchist Students of Theory, And Research, & Development conference.
As anarchists living in an consumer-driven industrial world where so much of our lives is dominated or facilitated by the State or what we may call Capitalism, what can we consider to be real in our lives, if anything? Are we truly in a Society of the Spectacle, or perhaps lost in the depths of post-modernity or some similar state of extreme alienation that makes the real impossible? Are we truly separated from nature, or are these all simply labels and empty theories that can only attempt to frame the chaotic and complicated world around us?
Call for Proposals
Cultural, Social and Political Thought Graduate Student Conference
University of Victoria, Coast Salish and Straits Salish Territories
April 22-24 2016
What is nihilism? What is hope? Can one have both? Are they sentiments? Systems of belief? Realities? Are they the same reality? This conference will grapple with the concepts of ‘nihilism’ and ‘hope’ as two fundamentally inseparable ideas—in contrast to the notion of these two terms being diametrically opposite and/or mutually exclusive, as they are sometimes understood.
Identity has become a code word for most anarchists. For those who reject it, it connotes people who embrace their victimization. For those who embrace it (or who at least don't reject it), it means the ways that groups of people are linked in how they suffer in this world (and implies solutions to that suffering, as well). The criticisms of identity, like those of the term "p.c.", have also been jumped on by right-wing folks, looking to negate the idea that there is more structural unfairness aimed at some than at others...
I generally refuse to debate to which degree our collective future is set in stone. Placing hypothetical situations at the forefront of political thought seems foolish to me, as none of us are clairvoyant. Hypothetically, if all fossil fuels were left in the ground, and no more were burned as of tomorrow, we might have a chance of survival as a species. Hypothetically, a solar storm could knock the grid offline, saving the natural world from further extirpation. Hypothetically, the powerful could adopt humane policies to reduce human suffering during ecological and industrial collapse. We know, however, that these are sordid fantasies. They are sordid because they detract from real suffering being visited upon the natural world everyday, and the suffering of those humans to which the apocalypse is not a distant future event, or a clever metaphor.
Since we announced the project on @news back in January of this year, ten new titles have been released, which were are excited to share with you. As always, everything we do is available for free download in printable and readable PDF format on our website
The latest issue of Black Flag, the flagship publication of the Free Association of Anarchists (F@@), has just been published online, and is available for download here:
This text is less so a general critique of insurrectionalist methodology or ideas than a critique of how a specific insurrectionalism, that which has developed in Barcelona in the last eighteen years, has played out in practice. It problematizes a set of practices and attitudes that it sees in the self- proclaimed insurrectionalist milieu there, from arrogance to bad security to an incomplete understanding of repression. At times it broadens to critique insurrectionalisms of other places or more general aspects of the tendency.