Community as an Activist Concept

Community as an Activist Concept

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Workshop Description: 
Facilitated by AK Thompson The concept of "community" has played an important role in shaping contemporary radical struggles and with good reason. In a context defined by alienating capitalist social relations, the affective and strategic bonds of community have often been seen as an important source of counter-power. Nevertheless, "community" has also been marshaled by constituted power itself as a category and strategy of ruling. How, then, should those committed to radical social change relate to the category? In order to help break with accounts that present "community" as a self-evident good, participants in this session will be encouraged to consider case studies in which activist recourse to the concept has produced ambivalent results.

AK Thompson is a Toronto-based writer, social theorist, and activist. His publications include Sociology for Changing the World: Social Movements / Social Research (Fernwood, 2006) and Black Bloc, White Riot: Anti-Globalization and the Genealogy of Dissent (AK Press, 2010). Between 2006 and 2011, he served on the Editorial Committee of Upping the Anti: A Journal of Theory and Action.