Why a Forum on the Commons?
The Occupy movement is entering a new phase, one in which many of us feel the need to combine renewed engagement through direct actions and mobilizations with a deep reflection on the strategic objectives of our movement. In order to fulfill this need, the organizing committee of Making Worlds* is inviting Occupy supporters, sympathizers, and other organizations to participate in this Forum on the politics of the commons. In particular, we are interested in understanding how groups and communities working on housing, health care, education, food, water, energy, information, communication and knowledge resources can develop a vision of these resources as commons: a third form of social organization to the state and corporate capitalism. Making Worlds has the ambitious goal of articulating a strategic vision from and for the movement as well as specific political initiatives aiming at its realization.
Structure of the Forum
The Forum is a space in which everyone can contribute to thinking and doing collectively. The structure of the Forum is meant to help us overcome the traditional theory/action divide. This will not be an “academic” event, nor an “activist” one. We believe that you don’t need to belong to any particular group, or have any particular expertise in order to be entitled to participate in politics. Politics is also part of the Commons, something that should belong to everyone.
Six thematic workshops will be held during the Forum. Each will include several subjects/groups. We have agreed on the following guidelines for the workshops:
– Combine theory and practice: thinking is a way of doing, as much as doing is a way of thinking
– Set a tone of horizontality and respect
– Each sub-group will give a brief presentation/introduction (7-10 minute maximum)
– Discussion, questions, conversation
– How to keep / start building a commons in this area?
– Production of a document. Possible formats: transcriptions, interventions, interviews, synthesis of discussions…