Leaving Systems: What Alternatives?
Call for Papers: Special dossier
Inclusivity policies, corporations, and international organizations increasingly speak in the name of minorities whilst presenting themselves as an alternative to hegemonic modes to governance. However, time and time again, we have found our movements co-opted, absorbed, and re-absorbed by systems of power (nation-states, the police, border control, etc.) that work insidiously to neutralize the threat that we might pose to their survival and continuity. The effectiveness of the systems in doing so is matched by the futility of the organizational forms, tools, ideologies, and practices that confront them.
While we might not be able to claim a permanent “outside” to the system, we could hijack, deviate, and redirect as a queer feminist praxis, so that our alternatives find themselves expanded rather than assimilated. How can we build/demolish to revolt against a world order that feeds on normativity, ostracism, and division?
What we propose, then, is a first dossier that critically engages with the current practices of formal and informal institutions that look towards creating alternatives. We are mostly concerned with contexts of economic crises/wars, occupation, and securitization, whether in local contexts or transnationally.
By dossier, we mean a space where contributions are received on an ongoing basis and formatting and style are not bounded. We welcome texts, commentaries, doodles, essays, studies, visuals, podcasts, short videos, among other experimental forms.
Possible topics include, but are not limited to:
- The prevailing economic systems as a site of individual/collective struggle
- The current limitations of trade unions and cooperatives in the face of huge crises (economic collapse, pandemic, occupation, ethnic cleansing, war)
- The material realities of the labor force in the South and its systematic exploitation by major commercial companies, governments, factories, and existing official unions
- The need to reimagine the cycle of production and supply outside the custody of competing with globalized markets and deadly rapid production pressures
- The logic of profit and accumulation of wealth: nation-states transferring their responsibility/ies onto institutions and “citizens,” including in contexts of pandemic
- Charity and relief work as a form of neocolonialism, and the institutionalization of basic needs
- Transforming struggles into identities and borders: isolating people/communities in siloes to short circuit change that is structural and radical
- Reduced mobility: border controls, global vaccine apartheid, and securitized curfews and lockdowns as new forms of discrimination and isolation
- Social distancing as a tool that reinforces racialised/classed/ethnicized communities
- The Internet as a site of both emerging ecologies of knowledge and structural inequalities
- Emerging alternatives in today’s world order: what are the stakes, possibilities, and shortcomings?
For a publication in September 2021, the deadline for submission is Saturday, July 31, 2021. After that date, we will be accepting submissions on a rolling basis.
We encourage submissions in Arabic, and can also accept texts in English, French, and Spanish. In light of our commitment to extend our transnational work, we also welcome contributions from South America, Sub-Saharan Africa, and South Asia/the Pacific, among other contexts of the South.
To submit, please send your contribution to firstname.lastname@example.org as a .doc or .docx file, with “Submission Dossier 1” as the subject of your e-mail.
If accepted for inclusion, please note that your paper will be translated to a second language by our team.