Radical media, politics and culture.


mikebrig writes "Marx's legacy to humanity
Ibn Campusino


A collection of papers presented at a seminar organised at the University in
1998 under the auspices of the Mediterranean Institute to mark the 150th
anniversary of the Communist Manifesto by Marx and Engels, was edited by Carmel
Vassallo and Clare Thake Vassallo.

hydrarchist writes:
Dark Matter, Las Agencias, and the Aesthetics
of Tactical Embarrassment

Gregory G. Sholette

photo courtesy of Las Agencias
and Jordi Claremonte

In January and February
of 2003 the focus of mass media outlets around the world converged
upon a series of historically unprecedented street demonstrations
organized in opposition to the pending US war in Iraq. Estimates range
from six to ten million protesters left their homes and businesses
to occupy urban spaces in over sixty nations (2).
As unique as these events were however, one can find significant precedents
in an earlier cycle of mass demonstrations against global capitalism
organized by a wide range of activists from anarchists and eco-feminists
to militant labor unions and youthful Trotskyists as well as farmers,
house wives and "naked" people. As the artist Alan Sekula
described the memorable 1999 protestation against the World Trade

“There were moments
of civic solemnity, of urban anxiety, and of carnival. Again, something
very simple is missed by descriptions of this as a movement founded
in cyberspace: the human body asserts itself in the city streets against
the abstraction of global capital….”(3)

Karl Fogel writes:

The Promise of a Post-Copyright World

Karl Fogel

There is one group of people not shocked by the record industry's
recent decision to sue randomly chosen file sharers: historians of
copyright. They already know what everyone else is slowly finding
out: that copyright was never about paying artists for their work, and
that far from being designed to support creators, copyright was
designed by and for distributors — that is,
publishers, which today includes record companies. But now that the
Internet has given us a world without distribution costs, it no longer
makes any sense to restrict sharing in order to pay for centralized
distribution. Abandoning copyright is now not only possible, but
desirable. Both artists and audiences would benefit, financially and
aesthetically. In place of corporate gatekeepers determining what can
and can't be distributed, a much finer-grained filtering process would
allow works to spread based on their merit alone. We would see a
return to an older and richer cosmology of creativity, one in which
copying and borrowing openly from others' works is simply a normal
part of the creative process, a way of acknowledging one's sources and
of improving on what has come before. And the old canard that artists
need copyright to earn a living would be revealed as the pretense it
has always been.

AnonymousComrade writes:

Issue #3 of the Journal of Aesthetics and Protest

1. Manifesto #3


Bully Pulpit!!

As a magazine, we are a bully pulpit -- we are announcing, “Engage with
the complexities of possibility through reality. In this way, we will
become the better world.”

An anonymous coward writes:

The Libre Manifesto

A constellation of interests is now seeking to increase their ownership and control of creativity. They tell us that they require new laws and rights that allow them to control concepts and ideas and protect them from exploitation. They say that this will enrich our lives, create new products and safeguard the possibility of future prosperity. But this is an absolute disaster for creativity, whose health depends on an ongoing, free and open conversation between ideas from the past and the present.

— In response, we wish to defend the idea of a creative sphere of concepts and ideas that are free from ownership.(1)

The Arts Collective writes

The Arts Collective stands for the release of the poet out of the typist, the painter out of the handyman, the musician out of the radio presenter, the activist out of the bureaucrat. Artistic expression in a process of radical democratisation. Art in various forms from song to sculpture, from commentary to critique, from drawing to dance.

"Can the Subaltern Speak German?
On Postcolonial Critique"

Hito Steyerl (May, 2002)

The debate on cultural globalization also often involves so-called postcolonial
theory. What does this encompass? According to Ruth Frankenbert and Lata Mani
(1993, 292), postcolonialism refers to a specific "conjuncture" of social force
fields and a type of political positioning in relation to local conditions.
Geopolitical power gradients strongly influence these social relations. They
influence the emergence of certain subjectivities -- and thus also the
production of art and the formation of the aesthetic and cognitive categories
of its perception. Since global power relations structure living conditions all
over the world today, according to Frankenberg and Mani's definition the place
where postcolonial power relations are in effect, is therefore equally
ubiquitous. This place is neither outside social practices nor beyond the
borders of western societies, but is rather reproduced within them as a social
relationship of simultaneous inclusion and exclusion.

Bowman38 writes:

Hello everyone, The Soft Cage explores the hidden history of surveillance -- from controlling slaves in the old South to implementing early criminal justice, tracking immigrants, and closely monitoring the poor as part of modern social work. It also explores the role computers play in creating a whole new world of seemingly benign technologies -- such as credit cards, website "cookies", electronic toll collection, "data minings", and iris scanners at airports.

With fears of personal and national security at an all-time high, this ever-growing infrastucture of high-tech voyeurism is shifting the balance of power between individuals and the state in groundbreaking -- and very dangerous -- ways.

Mr. Parenti, author of Lockdown America, offers a compelling and vital history lesson for every American concerned about the expansion of surveillance into our public and private lives. I highly recommend it. Bowman38

Anonymous Comrade writes:

"It’s the “Gangs of New York” for real, or really playing… This weekend a crew of hardcore re-enactors will try to put on the Draft Riots of 1863 at the Richmondtown Restoration in Staten Island. The riot starts at 2pm, Saturday and Sunday.

Bureau of Public Secrets writes:
Brassens and the other post-World War II French singers are responsible for the greatest renaissance of song in modern times. . . . The great secret of Brassens is that he speaks for the total unassimilables with complete self-awareness. He knew that he and behind him his ever-growing following could not and never would be assimilated, and he knew why, and he said so in every song, whatever that song was about. With him the counterculture comes of age"
(Kenneth Rexroth, "Subversive Aspects of Popular Songs"). * * *


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