Radical media, politics and culture.

Crisis of Everything Everywhere January 7th-15th

Crisis of Everything Everywhere January 7th-15th
16 Beaver

Crisis of Everything Everywhere is the potential name for a small scale / molecular / modular / horizontally organized effort to think, speak about, and speculate upon our present.

It will unfold over a period of 9 days, between January 7th and 15th. It will involve various groups and individuals who have explored or been directly involved in the movement of the squares, encampments and occupations of 2011.

It will involve artists, thinkers, writers, activists, occupiers, poets, programmers, workers, revolutionaries, students, debtors, laborers and laborless of all kinds into a focused yet open-ended conversation, collective research and analysis of our contemporary social-political movements / struggles.

Given the fact we are in New York, we will make a special effort to address and consider how those movements have impacted the political and cultural landscape of this city, region and country. And by connecting to other histories and places, to begin to build up an image of what kinds of struggles and challenges may lay ahead in the coming weeks, months, even years.]

1. Invite

This Saturday, 16 Beaver will begin a 9 day intensive retreat at the space, which we are tentatively calling 'Crisis of Everything Everywhere'

Even nascent movements require their own situations of learning.

For many, the streets, occupations, assemblies, working groups and political struggles have inspired new contexts for such learning. They have, furthermore, provided a host of experiences to reflect upon and study. Now is a time to do precisely that, to reflect upon those experiences and think about the strengths, limits, and potential horizons these processes and struggles have engendered.

Such an inquiry is not interested to produce new books and histories, as much as it is to think and consider how such conversations and the articulation of collective inquiry can directly feed back into movements and further experimentation on the streets and into our lives.

This modular and molecular process will be one of what we hope will be a multitude of short-term experiments globally in constructing a collective space-time-situation of learning and thinking directly from, through, with these recent experiences. So let this short note serve as a call to all those who have contributed to or been touched by the movements and events of the last year to dedicate this period to think, reflect, and speak in public and in common about this remarkable moment.

Each day of our own intensive will be organized around a set of questions, a call or topic considered important by those responsible for bringing the session together. We will have different intensities of preparation, but most of the sections will be taken care of by individuals or groups who are committed or interested in the questions to be discussed. The form of the sessions may range from performative situations, to interviews, to workshops, or unfold as short talks followed by conversations or open themed discussions.

Although there will be overlap, the general movement of these days will be as follows.

We will try to begin the weekend with broader conversations attempting to situate these movements globally and historically. And to work toward situating ourselves within

We begin this upcoming weekend (7th and 8th) with both laying out a background for these movements globally / historically and bringing ourselves into the present.

Saturday, will revolve around two large conversations which attempt to broaden our scope geographically and historically. Brandon Jourdan and Marianne Maeckelbergh will talk about their research and work attempting to explore the inter-relations between the occupy movements here in the US and their work examining the struggles in Egypt, Greece, Spain, and England. This will be followed up with a conversation with Brian Holmes and Claire Pentecost, delving into some of the questions raised by their own collectively organized research project in Chicago at Mess Hall, considering the contemporary crises, by revisiting the past economic crises of the 30's and 70's.

Sunday we will build upon these discussions to reflect and speculate about the potential developments of this movement. This will include some analysis and conversation with Andrew Ross about the potentials for a campaign for a student debt strike. And will open up to an evening program that will analyze prospective limits, divisions and tensions within the 99% and begin to build up a conversation about some of the strengths of this nascent movement.

The weekdays (9-13) will then attempt to focus in on specific questions, dimensions or contexts of the struggles unfolding today.

These sessions will range from questions relating to emergent spatial practices, to questions addressing work and labor, questions around the act of striking or a general strike, media and questions relating to press, cultures of resistance and resistances of culture, direct democracy, communization, debt, commons, as well as focusing on specific updates and interviews with individuals involved in movements in Greece, Spain, Japan, Egypt, and beyond.

The final weekend will be dedicated to thinking more concertedly about the potential futures of these movements and to articulate, clarify, address the questions which have been developed over the week and which we have discovered as important.

We plan to be sending a more detailed description of the program on Friday and providing updates on our website.


Please note that this entire process will only be as rich as those who take part.

Based on prior experience, many of the strongest contributions will come by those who decide to join for these discussions.

We believe that this is a moment where all of the intelligence that has been cultivated across different contexts and networks can come together to both analyze and contribute to the development of these struggles for a common.

Though care will be taken to invite specific individuals to provide some anchors for conversations, we will rely on those on our list to also forward to people who could add to this conversation. So please see this short letter as a personal invitation. If you know individuals who can speak to or have particular background of the issues touched on please invite them.

As each of the sessions will be organized by different individuals, there will be variations in how they are facilitated, but over the last 12 years, we have managed very large conversations without formal facilitation or facilitators, so the default mode of conversation will remain this unless one of the groups or individuals taking care a session chooses another way to move and distribute the conversation.