Search results for 'culture'

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The Undisciplined and Punishment 

In the past several years a lively list serve has evolved that addresses issue of incarceration and justice in the United States. Each night I log on to messages that range from desperate pleadings for someone life to cautious discussions of what the slogans should be on the posters for the next Mumia march. There are technical descriptions of prison architecture and quests for herbal cures to cell block bronchitis epidemics. It is the underside of what is one of our leading industries: locking people up.

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Electronic Civil Disobedience, Simulation, and the Public Sphere 

What counts in the long run is the "use" one makes of a theory....We must start from existing practices in order to retrace the fundamental flaws.
--Felix Guattari, "Why Marx and Freud No Longer Disturb Anyone"

In 1994, when Critical Art Ensemble first introduced the idea and a possible model of electronic civil disobedience (ECD) as another option for digital resistance, the collective had no way of knowing what elements would be the most practical, nor did it know what elements would require additional explanation. After nearly five years of field testing of ECD by various groups and individuals, its information gaps have become a little more obvious and can finally be addressed.

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Hollaback #Harassmentis 

What is Hollaback?
The real motive of street harassment is intimidation. To make its target scared or uncomfortable, and to make the harasser feel powerful. But what if there was a simple way to take that power away by exposing it? You can now use your smartphone to do just that by documenting, mapping, and sharing incidents of street harassment. Join an entire community ready to Hollaback!

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We are all Khaled Said 

Against torture in Egypt and inhuman treatment of Egyptians in their own country

"It's Khaled Said...
He is a 28 years old Egyptian who was tortured and killed by two policemen in the street where he lived in Alexandria, Egypt. Khaled's death further exposed the Egyptian police brutality and their systematic torture of Egyptians. Khaled died, but many Egyptians have become alive where his picture has now become the symbol of Egyptians' struggle for their rights and freedom."

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Frequently Asked Questions About Justice on Trial 

It is neither easy nor popular to go against prevailing assumptions in society, especially when they pertain to how justice is dispensed in this country. But speaking out against injustice is and always has been the moral assignment of those who are inspired by the promise of American Freedom. That's why Johanna Fernandez and Kouross Esmaeli sought to tell this difficult story of a system gone awry in the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal. Dissecting what went wrong - and what continues to go wrong - in the American justice system when it comes to people of color or of lesser economic means (and working toward correcting those injustices) is an essential civic duty, and the basis of Justice on Trial.

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The Invention of the Savage: Colonial Exhibitions and the Staging of the Arab Spring 

Watching a popular uprising in real time was indeed a dramatic experience. As viewers tuned in (or streamed in) to the violence, courage, and uncertainty of events in North Africa this year, many of them had the impression of witnessing the "actual" events, free from the framing tactics and analytical bias often found on the six o'clock news. A host of new media celebrities became household names as they reported live from Tahrir, and news outlets such as Al-Jazeera saw an unprecedented rise in viewership. Spectators were made to believe that a return to the event "itself" was once again possible after decades of being locked into what Jean Baudrillard called the hyper-real. The revolution in-and-of-itself seemed to unfold before our eyes, creating a fetish for real-time revolt.

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Looking into the practice within the labs 

To talk about the Cybermohalla project is to talk about concrete practices and how they relate to forms of knowledge. This is essential when we reflect on being producers of knowledge. What we are trying to follow and understand is the intricate web of processes involved in the development of a group - not just an aggregate of specialised selves. We also try to follow how this group generates within it a capacity for self recognition, for intersubjective recognition, for understanding the social biography of the neighbourhood and for developing a sense of and addressing diverse publics.

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    Post-media operators: "sovereign & vague" 

    No one recognises these powers as their own

    (Why Theory?) We have to dispense with the idea that theorising occurs after the creative event; that a poem or a track or a text is made and then, as part of its process of dissemination, there follows the theorising of the piece. Such a theorising is normally attributed to those known variously as critics, reviewers and essayists.

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    The Fourth World War 

    The following text is an excerpt from a talk given by Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos to the International Civil Commission of Human Rights Observation in La Realidad, Chiapas on November 20, 1999. The outline for the talk was published in Letters 5.1 and 5.2 in November of the same year, with the titles "Chiapas: the War: 1, Between the Satellite and the Microscope, the Other's Gaze," and 2, "The Machinery of Ethnocide." Any similarity to the conditions of the current war is purely coincidental. Published in Spanish in La Jornada, Tuesday, October 23, 2001.

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    The Watershed in Your Head - Mapping Anthropocene River Basins 

    Translating the abstraction—and banalities—of the Anthropocene into readable cartography has resulted in many past attempts that often ended up reproducing those same qualities. But, as Brian Holmes asserts in this essay, we seem to have found ourselves in a moment where collaboration, engagement, and new forms of knowledge exchange are breaking that deadlock. Tracing his own involvement with artistic practices that both engage with and attempt to represent a “political ecology,” Holmes explains how the evolving, collaborative cartographic practice that brought the "Mississippi. An Anthropocene River map" into being simultaneously reveals and interrogates the power structures of Anthropocence society.

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    SWARMACHINE 

    Activist Media Tomorrow*

    * BH: When I wrote this text five years ago, it really was not clear whether the swarming tactics of the counter-globalization movement would get a "second chance." But they have, and now the subtitle could be "activist media today."

    What happened at the turn of the millennium, when a myriad of recording devices were hooked up to the Internet and the World Wide Web became an electronic prism refracting all the colors of a single anti-capitalist struggle? What kind of movement takes to the barricades with samba bands and videocams, tracing an embodied map through a maze of virtual hyperlinks and actual city streets? The organizational aesthetics of the networked movements was called "tactical media," a concept that mixed the quick-and-dirty appropriation of consumer electronics with the subtle counter-cultural anthropology of Michel de Certeau. The idea was to evoke a new kind of popular subjectivity, constitutionally "under the radar," impossible to identify, constantly shifting with the inventions of digital storytelling and the ruses of open-source practice. Too bad so much of this subversive process was frozen into a single seductive phrase.

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    Putting the Demo Back in Democracy: March Against the Moguls. 

    That guerrilla video is now the subject of historical reflection is probably a sign of its demise. There has been a recent flurry of archival and publishing activity centering on experiments made in the '70s. In 1997, the Chicago-based Video Data Bank released Surveying the First Decade, a compilation of work from the early days of video, and Oxford University Press published Deirdre Boyle's Subject to Change: Guerrilla Television Revisited, the definitive study of the video movements of the late 1960s and '70s. These reflections on the utopian impulse in early video provide an opportunity to think about the present state of media in this country, in particular those movements that have attempted to create electronic space for non-commercial views that run counter to the mainstream.

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    Human rights, testimony, and transnational publicity 

    In the period between the end of the cold war in 1989 and the events of September 11, 2001, human rights became the dominant moral narrative by which world politics was organized. Inspired by the momentous political and cultural transformations taking place at the time, from the fall of the Berlin Wall to the spread of global communications technologies, promoters of human rights discourse optimistically predicted that a transnational public sphere dedicated to democratic values would emerge (We now know, of course, that such predictions were wrong, as early post cold war hopes gave way to the harsh realities of contemporary globalization).

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    Talking about a Revolution: An Interview with Camille Otrakji 

    "If you've been following events in Syria, you'd know that the English-language press is mostly deeply critical of the Assad regime (while the Arabic press displays a slightly wider range of views). I thought it would be worth trying to present a minority report on the situation from a Syrian friend of mine, although, as you will see, he argues precisely that his position is actually held by a very significant majority (albeit a rather quiet and frustrated majority) of Syrians.

    Camille Otrakji is a Syrian political blogger based in Montreal. Although he tends to keep a low profile, Otrakji has been, for the past several years, at the forefront of many of the most interesting and influential online initiatives relating to Syrian politics. He is one of the authors and moderators at Joshua Landis's Syria Comment, and the founder of Creative Syria, a constellation of websites including Mideast Image (a vast collection of original old photographs of Middle Eastern subjects) and Syrian Think Tank (an online debate site hosting many of Syria's top analysts). Last year, Otrakji courted controversy with a new initiative devoted to the subject of Syrian-Israeli peace, entitled OneMideast.org. He agreed to speak with me about the latest events in Syria, and I'm sure that his views will generate plenty of discussion."

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    A Rift in Empire? 

    The antiwar demonstrations of February 15, 2003 proved it: theself-organization of free singularities is possible on a planetaryscale. And that was an event, despite all that followed. In amanifesto-text written just after those demonstrations, I used thelanguage of Negri and Hardt to say that the multitudes could create arift in Empire. In a context where the Aristocracy (the greattransnational companies) had been weakened by a string of financialdisasters, where the Monarchy (the political and military command ofthe earth) had fallen apart in serious dissension, I wanted toencourage the democratic action of the Plebe, against the scorn of theAmerican, British, Spanish and Italian leaders. It was a moment thathad multiplied the world's political stages, overflowing thetraditional mechanisms of representation.

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      Which Democracy in a Post-Political Age? 

      The question that I would like to examine with you concerns the role that the new media can play in the fostering of democracy. We can discern roughly two opposite answers to that question. On one side there are those enthusiasts who argue that they provide us with the technology that will finally make it possible to realize the ideal of direct democracy under modern conditions, on the other side those detractors who see them as contributing to a further privatization of politics and as replacing rational debate by the instant expression of private prejucides, turning what ought to be public decisions into private consumer-like choices.

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