Circulating May - July
Grassroots activism encompasses so much. It doesn't depend on what different groups do, but rather, how they do it. This issue looks into actions: how grassroots activists operate from below, addressing causes from their roots, and nurturing their members with their activities and surroundings. The premise of this mode of action is that a better world is to be achieved through the mobilization of the masses, instead by the order of a few people in power. Grassroots organizations do not only denounce unjust systems but prefigure modes of being, gathering, and making politics on local and national levels, which serve as experiments and role models for large-scale social transformation.
Meaningful collective deeds grow with time, contrary to the fast pace of individualism, which is always too busy or self-involved to reorganize. The different pace of organizing resistance and thriving from the bottom up are practiced for and by those attacked by states due to their passports, bank accounts, or gender identities. When the city or the country is a space of brutality, moving together is less scary. Uprooted communities can shield themselves against state oppression when they find comfort among each other. Grassroots organizations allow us to have political serendipity. This issue examines the contexts and actions that cultivate collective practices of self-organization.
Simin Jawabreh asks about how to counter increasing police power in entanglement with gentrification in Berlin, No metro at Pl. Exarchion assembly shares their struggle against so-called public infrastructure in Athens, Issa Amro unveils about the often unseen, nonviolent resistance in Hebron, Palestine. Through gatherings in these pages, we draw a connection between seemingly disparate places. The collective of architects La Rivoluzione delle Seppie in Italy’s Belmonte Calabro report on the experience of creating an urban environment built on the premises of the commons. Artist Yin Aiwen shows you how to use playful horizontal tools to reframe the re-organization of care systems.
Grassroots activism works in or against legal systems, not rarely in transnational contexts. In the face of complex state relationships, international law can be a progressive tool, and Ingo Venzke, Ivana Isailovic, and their peers at the Transformative Effects of Globalization in Law Summit of the University Amsterdam prove it. Artists Tolia Ashtakishvili, Adelita Husni-Bey, and the artist collective Jatiwangi art Factory shed light on what constitutes socially engaged practices. Haline Metaferia and Umar Rashid reappropriate symbols and colonial narratives to narrate the story of those who are never acknowledged and still make history, in their own words.
We dedicate this issue—our anniversary issue, marking five years of circulation of AWC on the streets—to all those who, like us, know the grace and perils of being held and holding space for the many. Artists, cultural practitioners, activists, vendors, and tireless workers who implement hope as a shared practice, thank you. We support you, whoever you might be.
With contributions by Simin Jawabreh, Estéfany Alanya, Luisa Izuzquiza, Ola Kohut, Rico Zyrrano, Jacky Leder, Tolia Astakhishvili, Eliza Levinson, Adelita Husni Bey, Dalia Maini, Andrejs Mazenko, Paweł Sochacki, Jatiwangi Art factory, Amelie Jakubek, Helina Metaferia, Frohawk Two Feathers, S. Prasad, Ingo Venzke, Ivana Isailović, Odisea, The No metro station at Exarchia Square Assembly, Project Space Festival, Phillip Paiement, Isabel Feichtner, Elisa Fuenzalida, Issa Amro, Yin Aiwen, Mengyang Zhao, Anna Beckers, Vladimir Bogoeski, Klaas Hendrik Eller, Johanna A.P. Lorenzo, Mat Dryhurst, Holly Herndon, Orizzontale, La Rivoluzione delle Seppie, Caterina Selva, Ido Nahari, Marginal Studio, Germane Barnes, RESOLVE, Ece Temelkuran, María Inés Plaza Lazo, The School of the Damned, Eva Fabbris, Carceral Time Working Group, Margaretha Wewerinke-Singh, Petra Molnar, Disruption Network Lab, Jude Macannuco, Kuba Szreder, Fiona Banner, Rahel Spöhrer, Daniel Falb, Untitled Association, Alice Pedroletti, Numero Cromatico.
Thanks to the support of the Berliner Senat, and in collaboration with Zeppelin University, La Rivoluzione delle Seppie and the University of Amsterdam.
Founders / Publishers / Directors
Verantwortlicher i.S.d Åò 18 Abs. 2 MStV
María Inés Plaza Lazo, Pauł Sochacki
Managing Artistic Director: Amelie Jakubek
Editor in Chief: Dalia Maini
Managing Editor: Ido Nahari
Editor & Project Manager: Elisa Fuenzalida
Editorial Assistance & Social Infrastructure: Sofia Willer
Administrative Assistance: Selma Louise Christoph
Office Assistance: Miguel Angel Espinoza
Translation and Proofreading: Eliza Levinson, Anne Waak, Huda Zikry, Aslı Özdoyuran
Graphic Design: Till Sperle
Online Design: Giorgia Belotti
Druck: BV Berliner Zeitungsdruck GmbH
Alle Vertriebs- und Kund*innenanfragen an die Verlagsadresse:
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Leicht Lesen - Definitionen von: Capito Logo
Gefördert von: Berliner Senat Logo