Signal #2 – Writings on the freedom of movement

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Signal – Writings on the freedom of movement / Kirjoituksia liikkumisen vapaudesta is a multilingual (mostly ENG/FI) publication on migration issues published by the Free Movement Network Finland. It aims to provide a platform for critical, positional and activist knowledge on current border policies, migrant rights’ struggles and lived mobilities in Finland and elsewhere in Europe.

The Johannesburg Salon, Volume 9

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This special volume, guest edited by RhodesMustFall, provides the first ‘live archive’ of a movement born at the University of Cape Town that has now reached other South African campuses and is clamoring for the decolonization of knowledge and of the university. Twenty years after the formal ending of Apartheid, South Africa has reached the kind of threshold so vividly foreseen by Frantz Fanon in his famous chapter, “Pitfalls of national consciousness” (The Wretched of the Earth). As the former national liberation movement – now the ruling party – keeps extolling the virtues of accommodationism, a massive anger, even rage, is mounting especially among the ‘born free’ and the multitudes of the disenfranchised.

Did things have to come to this? How can we explain the persistence of white supremacist attitudes in almost every sector of life? What does it mean to be black in post-Apartheid South Africa? Is the post- in ‘post-Apartheid’ the same as the post in ‘postcolonial’? Shouldn’t we be thinking, rather, in terms of ‘decolonization’? How would a decolonized university look like once the strictures of Eurocentrism are destroyed?

Signal #1 – Writings on the Freedom of Movement

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Spring 2015

During the last few years, the problems inherent in European immigration and asylum policy have given rise to a heated debate. The political movements initiated by migrants themselves, which are gaining in intensity throughout Europe, have made the biggest contribution of all to the wider acknowledgement of these problems.

Signal collects information on the experience of migrants and their political struggles. In the articles and images of this publication, artists, activists, and researchers share their knowledge of the situation faced by migrants in Finland and in the EU.This is a part of a project called 9 Gatherings, a collaboration between Free Movement Network and the Kiila Association of Writers and Artists. It is funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture. This project creates new relationships between residents and those foreigners that are living in precarious conditions.

www.vapaaliikkuvuus.net

The Johannesburg Salon, Volume 8

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Volume 8 of The Johannesburg Salon is now live. Curated by Ayana Smythe (University of California, Santa Barbara), Megan Jones (University of Stellenbosch), Leigh-Ann Naidoo (University of the Witwatersrand) and Achille Mbembe (University of the Witwatersrand), it captures the form and spirit of “Archives of the Non-Racial”, the Mobile Workshop organized in 2014 by The Johannesburg Workshop in Theory and Criticism (JWTC) and the Seminar in Experimental Critical Thought (SECT) of the University of California Humanities Research Institute.

Current features include: Angela Davis on her life in the struggle against racism; Achille Mbembe on the dream of a world free from the burden of race; Ruha Benjamin on what we owe each other, Joshua Williams on the sort of community envisioned by the first-person plural “we”; Casey Golomski on memories of Apartheid-era Swaziland; Jorge Campos on reading John Berger from the back of the bus; Pule Welch on the idea of the human race; Kirk Sides on anti-racism and the ethics of listening; Nicky Falkof on extracts from an abortive travelogue, written in the style of Hunter S. Thompson; handwritten notes by Fredo Rivera; Helen Douglas on why the wheels in her head go round and round; Josslyn Luckett on the chronicles of a comic mulatta; Tania Lizarazo on moving utopia; Simon Abramowitsch his notes from Berkeley to South Africa; Tana Nolethu Forrest’s photo essay on affective journeying; Tjasa Kancler’s documentary video; texts and images by Naadira Patel; Sarah Godsell’s notebook as a holding space for thought and emotion; Federico Navarrete on metaphors of racialization and sexuality in the Americas; Danai Mupotsa’s Qunu poems; Ghassan Hage’s handwritten notes; Roberta Estrela D’Alva’s poems; Kelly Gillespie on the bus as method and Sharad Chari on how to get off the bus.

Decolonizing the Transgender Imaginary

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Aren Aizura, Marcia Ochoa, Salvador Vidal-Ortiz, Trystan Cotton, Carsten Balzer/Carla LaGata, special issue editors

TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly, Volume 1, Issue 3
Duke University Press, 2014

What is at stake in acknowledging transgender studies’ Anglophone roots in the global North and West? What kinds of politics might emerge from challenging the assumption that biological sex—or the categories “man” and “woman”—is stable and self-evident across time, space, and culture? This collection asks how trans scholarship can decolonize, rather than reproduce, dominant imaginaries of sexuality and gender.

The big prison. Storys of harraga

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Prisons fulfil central political and economic functions. They are industrial complexes that generate high profits, and at the same time they are internment camps for those not wanted in this society. Numerous groups of persons unwilling or unable to cope with the demands of late capitalism in the global North are affected by imprisonment.

Migrants are one of the most important and largest groups of persons imprisoned. For them the “small prison” is a part and a condensed expression of the big prison: this is the society in which they live, but are systematically prevented from participating in. Both the big and the small prisons individualize and moralize social problems, responding with radical exclusion.

This webjournal is part of a bigger project in the framework of WienWoche, “About borders and walls. Migration and Prison”, led by Hor 29 Novembar.

The Johannesburg Salon, Volume 7

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The publication of the next volume of the Johannesburg Salon. Volume 7 centres on a collection of essays convened for Achille Mbembe’s African Future Cities Seminar, held at Harvard University in Autumn of last year. Edited by Stephanie Bosch Santana, the pieces explore the continent’s diverse urbanisms with an eye towards future trajectories of inventiveness, fortification, resilience and segregation.

In the Editorial section, artist Raimi Gbadamosi remembers the late Stuart Hall, Ashleigh Harris discusses style in recent diasporic African fiction, Helena Chavez Mac Gregor explores emergent political formations in Mexico and elsewhere, Lewis Gordon ruminates on the philosophical blues, Jonathan Klaaren reflects on the limits of the South African legal system and Ellison Tjirera makes a case for Windhoek’s city-ness. Catherine Portevin interviews Achille Mbembe (in French) about how his book Critique de la Raison Negre draws on the theories of Frantz Fanon and others to enter into dialogue with Immanuel Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason. The AFC symposium is complemented by Bregtje van der Haak’s exclusive interview with Rem Koolhaas, in which the architect meditates upon the meanings and possibilites of his Lagos Project, now fifteen years old.

e-misférica 11.1: Decolonial Gesture

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Jill Lane, Marcial Godoy-Anativia and Macarena Gómez Barris

Volume 11 | Issue 1 | 2014

Decolonial gesture is: cuir. Transfeminist, Postpornographic. The textual shift from queer to cuir is, says Sayak Valencia, a gesture of “sexual dissidence and its geopolitical and epistemic displacement toward the south.” Decolonial gesture is: CUIR FAT POWER! with artist Alejandra Rodríguez, aka La Bala. It is Post-sexual with artist Katia Sepúlveda, whose 2007 work of that name offers a silicone dildo in a frypan, melting very slowly over low heat. The challenge to patriarchy pictured is both radical and glacial: the image of the upright penis melting on a frypan—a place of feminized domesticity par excellence—images the demise of patriarchy and also insists on the very slow, continuous process of social change. Its praxis as image is confrontational, oppositional: a bold portrait of feminism’s threat to patriarchy. Its praxis as durational performance is transformative: over time, the antagonism between patriarchy and transfeminism dissolves.

Decolonial gesture is, then, ¡transmarikaputabollomestizxmigranteprecarix!
[…]

Decoloniality and Crisis

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A JCRT Special Edition, Winter 2014
Edited by Nikolay Karkov and Jeffrey W. Robbins

The attentive reader might ask: why a special issue on decoloniality and crisis? What is decoloniality, what do we mean by crisis, and why pair them together? The reason is simple (at least in our eyes): we see decoloniality and crisis as arguably the two key terms/processes/realities of our new millennium, which, tellingly, seem to have to come to fruition at roughly the same time. Just as the new century, certainly post-9/11, was starting to move away from the rhetoric of the “end of history” to one of a “clash of civilizations,” of permanent instability and conflict (i.e. crisis), so also an explicitly decolonial perspective was starting to gain ground, at least among radical academics and activists, primarily in the U.S., the Caribbean, and Latin America. The near simultaneous emergence of (in Walter Mignolo’s words) a “grammar of decoloniality” and (a new sense and dimensions of) crisis needs to give us a pause. Perhaps reading them side by side can be mutually illuminating, as in a sort of dialectic, whereby the mutual confrontation of the two realities adds further layers of complexity to each one […]