New Issue of ACME

From Jack Gieseking:

ACME :: Vol 16, No 3 (2017)

Table of Contents

Research

Guido Cimadomo
Tamir Arviv
Leslie Kern, Heather McLean

Themed Section – Critical Geographical Queer Semiotics (Guest Eds. M. Zebracki and T. Milani)

Martin Zebracki, Tommaso M. Milani
Martin Zebracki
Brian W. King
Thomas Baudinette
Lucas Gottzén
Scott Burnett, Tommaso M. Milani
Andrew Gorman-Murray, Chris Brickell
Martin Zebracki
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CFP: Feminist Geographies in Troubled Times

From Ebru Ustundag:

CFP: Feminist Geographies in/during Troubled Times: Dialogues, Interventions and Praxis

August 4-6, 2018

Feminist Geography Conference

University of Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

(Pre-IGU & CAG Conference)

The Canadian Women and Geography (CWAG) specialty group of the Canadian Association of Geographers (CAG) and the International Geographical Union (IGU) Commission on Gender and Geography are pleased to announce a two-day feminist geography conference to be held at the University of Montréal in Montréal, Québec, Canada. Taking place before the IGU Regional Conference and the Annual Meeting of the CAG in Québec City, the pre-conference will promote intergenerational and intersectional dialogues among feminist scholars, researchers and activists around the theme of practicing feminist geography in times that are troubled by recent ecological and societal changes such as the rise of white supremacy and homophobia, neoliberal politics, authoritarianism and climate change. We seek to create a space to examine solidarities and connections among feminist and other fields of critical geography such as queer and anti-racist geographies, political ecology, and non-human geographies. The pre-conference also aims to encourage discussion across linguistic differences by creating space for feminist geographers working in non-Anglo-American contexts. Proposals may be submitted in Spanish, French, and English however, presentations will be in French or English.

Possible Themes

How do feminist geographers understand and address troubled times at all scales from the body to the globe and in contexts such as the home, workplace, and public spaces? How do we address various and messy tensions and contradictions of feminist geographies in and during troubled times? How are tensions contested? What does it mean for various bodies to move through spaces of contradiction and tension? What kinds of tools do we have to dismantle these tensions for opening up spaces for marginalized subjectivities? How can we learn to listen to each other and move forward during these troubled times? What kinds of actions that we can take collectively?  We invite proposals to address these tensions and contradictions to open up spaces for conversation and dialogue that includes but not limited to:

●       Place and space for/by feminist  and other critical geographers in/during troubled times

●       Knowledges, methodologies and tools in/during troubled times

●       Talking across and through diverse feminist geography traditions and generations

●       Connecting feminist geographies and geographers in/during troubled times

●       Feminist next steps for better times (what action and praxis?)

●       Art(istic) and performative  responses to troubled times

Sessions, Panels, and Paper Submission

In the submission, include the name of the session, panel or paper, the names and contact information for all participants and an abstract of no more than 250 words.

Abstracts and presentations can be in either English or French.

Sessions & Panels: October 31, 2017

Papers: November 30, 2017

Adress for submission : femgeogconference@gmail.com

 

Registration

Details about registration will be announced shortly.

A modest registration fee that will be reduced for graduate students will be charged

Tentative Schedule

Registration and Welcoming Event – Saturday, August 4, 2018

Paper sessions and keynote  –  Sunday, August 5, 2018

Paper sessions and panels  –  Monday, August 6, 2018 (morning)

Depart for IGU in Quebec City –  Monday, August 6, 2018 (afternoon)

Hosts

IGU Commission on Gender and Geography, Canadian Women and Geography (CWAG), and Département de géografie, Université de Montréal.

Organizing Team

Marianne Blidon (Université de Paris-Sorbonne), Caroline Desbiens (Université Laval), Patricia Martin (Université de Montréal), Tiffany Muller-Myrdahl (Simon Fraser University), Julie Podmore (John Abbott College), Valerie Preston (York University), Laura Shillington (John Abbott college), Laurence Simard-Gagnon (Queen’s University) and Ebru Ustundag (Brock University)

 

FRENCH VERSION

 

Appel à communication : Géographies féministes en des temps troublés: Dialogues, Interventions et Praxis

4-6 août 2018

Colloque de Géographie Féministe

Université de Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada

(Pré-conférence de l’UGI et de l’ACG)

Le groupe d’étude sur les femmes et la géographie de l’Association canadienne des géographes (CWAG) et la commission genre et géographie de l’Union géographique internationale (UGI) sont heureux de vous annoncer la tenue du colloque de géographie féministe qui se tiendra durant deux jours à l’Université de Montréal, à Montréal (Québec, Canada). Ayant lieu avant le congrès régional de l’UGI et le congrès annuel de l’ACG dans la ville de Québec, la pré-conférence favorisera le dialogue intergénérationnel et intersectionnel entre les chercheur/euse.s et les militant.e.s féministes autour du thème de la pratique de la géographie féministe en des temps troublés. Nous explorerons cette thématique en écho aux récents changements sociaux tels que la résurgence du suprémacisme blanc, les politiques anti-féministe et homophobes, les politiques autoritaires et néolibérales, et écologiques tels que le changement climatique et les crises environnementales. Nous souhaitons créer un espace favorable à l’analyse des solidarités et des liens entre le féminisme et les autres champs de la géographie critique tels que les géographies queer, décoloniales et antiracistes ainsi que l’écologie politique et les géographie non-humaines. La pré-conférence vise également à encourager le dialogue au-delà des différences linguistiques en créant un espace pour les géographes féministes travaillant dans des contextes non anglo-américains. Les propositions peuvent être soumises en espagnol, en français et en anglais. Toutefois les présentations se feront en français ou en anglais.

Thèmes possibles

Comment en tant que géographes féministes comprenons-nous et abordons-nous les temps troublés à toutes les échelles – du corps au monde – et dans des contextes tels que la maison, le lieu de travail et les espaces publics ? Comment considérons-nous et résolvons-nous les diverses tensions et contradictions des géographies féministes en des temps troublés ? Comment ces tensions sont-elles contestées ? Qu’est-ce que cela signifie pour divers corps de se déplacer dans des espaces de contradiction et de tension ? De quels types d’outils disposons-nous pour venir à bout de ces tensions et ouvrir des espaces pour les subjectivités marginalisées ? Comment pouvons-nous apprendre à nous écouter les un.es les autres et à aller de l’avant en ces temps troublés ? Quelles dispositions pouvons-nous prendre collectivement ?

Nous appelons les propositions à considérer ces tensions et ces contradictions pour ouvrir des espaces d’échanges et de dialogue qui incluent, sans pour autant s’y limiter, les thèmes suivants:

• Lieux et espaces des géographes féministes et critiques en des temps troublés ;

• Savoirs, méthodologies et outils en des temps troublés ;

• Dialoguer à partir de diverses traditions et générations de la géographie féministe ;

• Mettre en contact les géographes et les géographies féministes en des temps troublés ;

• Prochaines étapes féministes vers des temps meilleurs (quelles actions et praxis ?) ;

• Performances et réponses (art)tistiques aux temps troublés.

Soumission des propositions de sessions, tables rondes et de communications

Les propositions doivent inclure le nom de la session, de la table ronde ou de la communication, les noms et les contacts des intervenant.e.s ainsi qu’un résumé d’un maximum de 250 mots.

Propositions de sessions et de tables rondes: 31 octobre 2017

Propositions de communications : 30 novembre 2017

Les résumés et présentations peuvent être en français ou en anglais.

Les propositions sont à envoyer à l’adresse suivante : femgeogconference@gmail.com

Inscriptions

Les détails concernant les inscriptions seront prochainement mis à votre disposition.

Une participation modeste, en particulier pour les étudiant.e.s, aux frais d’inscription sera demandée.

Déroulement

Accueil, enregistrement et discours d’ouverture – Samedi 4 août 2018

Session plénière, sessions et ateliers – Dimanche 5 août 2018

Sessions et tables rondes – Lundi 6 août 2018 (matin)

Départ pour la conférence de l’UGI à Québec – Lundi 6 août 2018 (après-midi)

Soutiens institutionnels

La Commission Genre et géographie de l’UGI, le groupe d’étude sur les femmes et la géographie de l’Association canadienne des géographes (CWAG) et le département de géographie de l’Université de Montréal.

Comité d’organisation

Marianne Blidon (Université Paris 1-Panthéon Sorbonne), Caroline Desbiens (Université Laval), Patricia Martin (Université de Montréal), Tiffany Muller Myrdahl (Simon Fraser University), Julie Podmore (John Abbott College), Valerie Preston (York University), Laura Shillington (John Abbott college), Laurence Simard-Gagnon (Queen’s University) et Ebru Ustundag (Brock University).

Spanish Version

Convocatoria de ponencias: Conferencia de geografías feministas en los tiempos turbulentos: diálogos, intervenciones y praxis

Pre-conferencia de Geografía Feminista del Congreso Regional de la UGI y el congreso anual de la Asociación Canadiense de Geógrafos

Université de Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canadá

4 a 6 de agosto del 2018

El grupo de trabajo de la Geografía y Mujeres Canadienses (CWAG en sus siglas inglesas) de la Asociación Canadiense de Geógrafos y la Comisión de Geografía y Género de la Unión Geográfica Internacional (UGI) se complacen en anunciar una conferencia de geografía feminista que se llevará a cabo en la Université de Montréal en Montréal, Québec, Canadá. Esta pre-conferencia, inserta en el marco de la conferencia regional del UGI y el congreso anual de la Asociación Canadiense de Geógrafos que se celebrarán en la Ciudad de Québec, tiene como objetivo promover diálogos intergeneracionales e interseccionales entre l@s académic@s, investigadores y activist@s feministas sobre el tema de como practicar la geografía feminista en tiempos turbulentos. Queremos crear un espacio para examinar las solidaridades y las conexiones entre feministas y otros campos de la geografía crítica, como las geografías queer y antiracista. Además, la pre-conferencia tiene al propósito fomentar una discusión a través de las diferencias lingüísticas, creando espacio para l@s geógraf@s feministas que trabajan en contextos que no son angloamericanos.

Temas posibles

¿Cómo podemos, como geógraf@s feministas, entender y abordar los tiempos turbulentos en todas las escalas -desde el cuerpo al mundo entero – y en contextos diferentes como el hogar, el trabajo y los espacios públicos? ¿Cómo consideramos y resolvemos las diversas tensiones y contradicciones de las geografías feministas en tiempos turbulentos? ¿Cómo se cuestionan estas tensiones? ¿Qué significa que varios cuerpos se muevan en espacios de contradicción y tensión? ¿Qué tipo de herramientas tenemos para superar estas tensiones y abrir espacios para las subjetividades marginadas? ¿Cómo podemos aprender a escucharnos y avanzar durante estos tiempos turbulentos? ¿Qué acciones colectivas podemos hacer?

Invitamos propuestas que consideren estas tensiones y contradicciones con la intención de abrir espacios de diálogo e intercambio que incluyan, entre otros, los siguientes temas:

• Lugares y espacios de geógraf@s feministas y críticos en tiempos turbulentos;

• Conocimientos, metodologías y herramientas en tiempos turbulentos;

• Diálogo de varias tradiciones y generaciones de geografía feminista;

• Conectar geógraf@s y geografías feministas en tiempos turbulentos;

• Los próximos pasos feministas hacia tiempos mejores (¿qué acciones y praxis?);

• Respuestas artísticas y performativas en tiempos turbulentos.

 

Presentación de propuestas de ponencias, sesiones y mesas redondas

Se aceptan los resúmenes en español, pero la ponencia tiene que ser en inglés o francés.

Las propuestas deben incluir el título de la sesión, mesa redonda o ponencia, nombres y contactos de los ponentes y el resumen (de no más de 250 palabras).

Propuestas de sesiones y mesas redondas: 31 de octubre de 2017

Propuestas de ponencias: 30 de noviembre de 2017

Las propuestas deben enviarse a: femgeogconference@gmail.com

Inscripción

Los detalles de inscripción serán disponibles pronto.

Se solicitará una cuota de inscripción modesta, reducida para los estudiantes.

Anfitriones de la conferencia

La Comisión de Geografía y Género de la Unión Geográfica Internacional (UGI), el grupo de trabajo de la Geografía y Mujeres Canadienses (CWAG en sus siglas inglesas) de la Asociación Canadiense de Geógrafos y Département de géografie, Université de Montréal.

Horario preliminar

4 de agosto de 2018: Evento social informal en la tarde con grupos comunitarios en el centro de Montréal.

5 de agosto de 2018 (todo el día): sesiones simultáneas de papel / panel

6 de agosto de 2018 (la mañana): sesiones simultáneas de papel / panel

6 de agosto de 2018 (la tarde): Viaje a la ciudad de Québec

Comité organizador/Comité d’organisation/Organising Committee

Marianne Blidon (Université Paris 1-Panthéon Sorbonne), Caroline Desbiens (Université Laval), Patricia Martin (Université de Montréal), Tiffany Muller-Myrdahl (Simon Fraser University), Julie Podmore (John Abbott College), Valerie Preston (York University), Laura Shillington (John Abbott College), Laurence Simard-Gagnon (Queen’s University) y Ebru Ustundag (Brock University).

 

CFP: Revisiting the Black Atlantic

From Alex Moulton:

Call for Papers: Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers, New Orleans, April 10-14, 2018

Revisiting the Black Atlantic: The present and future of Black Geographies 

Organizers: Leslie Gross Wyrtzen and Alex A. Moulton (Clark University)

In The Black Atlantic, Paul Gilroy disrupts narratives of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade that reduce Africans in the Americas to displaced flesh cargo forcefully comported and emplaced in the New World. Gilroy theorizes the Black Atlantic as a dynamic geography in which the entanglement of routes of movement and roots of cultural identity are negotiated and constitutive of new expressions and experience of Black identity which is neither Afrocentric nor confined to national boundaries. This conceptualization reworks notions of diaspora, homeland, movement and place in ways that call attention to the ongoingness of political economic, cultural, and ethno-racial processes of Atlantic modernity. The Black Atlantic and Gilroy’s subsequent works have been influential in the emergence of an explicit focus on the spatialities and mobilities of Black identity and culture.

This session seeks to explore the ways in which the concept of the Black Atlantic has been theoretically and empirically employed and reframed among geographers, and the implications of this work for the present and the future of Black geographies and anti-racist futures. We invite individuals who have engaged with Gilroy’s work across the discipline of Geography to submit abstracts. Themes and topics may include but are not limited to:

  • Afro-indigenous identity and environmental movements
  • Maroonage and Black resistance
  • Black mobilities (people and ideas)
  • Black geographies beyond the Atlantic
  • Afro-Asiatic geographies
  • Circulation of global racial hierarchies
  • Networks of resistance
  • Black subalterity
  • “New” diasporas
  • Transnational Black cultural production
  • Limitations of the Black Atlantic analytic

If you are interested in taking part in this session please send your abstract (250 words maximum) no later than Friday, October 20, 2017 to Leslie Gross-Wyrtzen (LWyrtzen@clarku.edu) or Alex Moulton (AMoulton@clarku.edu). Decision on papers will be communicated no later than October 23.

References

Gilroy, P., 1993. The black Atlantic: Modernity and double consciousness. Harvard University Press.

CFP: Land Justice in the City

From Sara Safransky:

2nd CFP AAG 2018: Land justice in the city

New Orleans, April 10-14

Abstracts due by October 15

Organizers: Sara Safransky (Vanderbilt University) and Tessa Eidelman (Vanderbilt University)

Discussant: Malini Ranganathan (American University)

Co-sponsors: Black Geographies Specialty Group

In the 1960s and 1970s, a number of social movements in the United States from the American Indian Movement to Black power activists and Puerto Rican radicals — saw land as the material basis for the struggle for collective self-determination. Today, as displacement in American cities intensifies, the land question is once again gaining urgency. The 2008 foreclosures crisis continues to reverberate in home losses, widening wealth gaps, and in the revival of “contract for deed” lending aimed at people who don’t qualify for mortgages, particularly Black and Latino homebuyers. At the same time, the reversal of white flight, return of upwardly mobile residents, and financialization of housing has caused a revaluation of land in urban centers. While the challenges facing urban poor and working-class residents, particularly people of color, are formidable, there is also a resurgence of activism nationwide around urban land. This activism joins significant land related activism taking place in rural and urban areas across the world. In the U.S., resistance takes the form of anti-eviction defenses, land reclamations, campaigns to organize tenant unions and increase renter power, and transnational alliances. For example, in 2006, the organization Take Back the Land established Umoja Village, a shantytown on public land in Miami-Dade County, Florida, where affordable housing was destroyed for a new condo development (Rameau 2008). In 2007, Right to the City Alliance began work on gentrification and the displacement of low-income people, people of color, and marginalized LGBTQ communities from neighborhoods, and now have almost fifty member organizations across the country (RTCA 2017). In 2009, the Western Cape Anti-Eviction Campaign in South Africa inspired the founding of the Anti-Eviction Campaign affiliates in Chicago and Los Angeles, which defend families facing eviction and take over vacant, bank-owned homes for homeless families (CAEC 2009). Most recently, on Juneteenth 2017, African-American Independence Day, the BlackOut Collective and Movement Generation launched the Land and Liberation Initiative, calling for reclamation and arguing that “[l]and is essential in the fight for self-determination and liberation for Black folks” (BLLI 2017).

The crises of affordability and accompanying land rights activism present a political and ethical imperative to revisit the urban land question in the United States. While land questions have been the subject of geographic scholarship in the global South where rural social movements from the Landless Workers Movement (Brazil) to the Landless People’s Movement (South Africa) have demanded agrarian and land reforms for decades, they have received less attention in global North cities. Yet the racial and cultural politics of land and property in the United States are, like South Africa or Brazil, haunted by colonial conquest, historical racialized property dispossession, and a state that has perpetuated white property privilege. We invite theoretically rich and empirically grounded papers that contribute to building a more robust land justice research agenda. We welcome papers that draw on indigenous studies, decolonial studies, critical race studies, diaspora studies, feminist theory, queer theory, or other critical approaches to the analysis of land related struggles. Papers might focus on:

  • analyses of urban land governance policies and their stakes for inequality and racial segregation in the U.S. city;
  • the visions, structure of organization, and narrative claims of different groups organizing to “take back” land;
  • historical analyses of social movements fighting for land justice in urban and rural contexts;
  • examinations of past and present legal efforts such as land restitution, redistribution, reform, or reparations aimed at securing land rights or financial compensation as a way to redress historical violence and past harms;
  • examples of strategic research alliances within and beyond the academy that uplift and support movements for land justice.
  • theoretical or conceptual pieces concerned with deepening understandings of what land justice means in the urban context and/or what is at stake in these struggles.

If you are interested in joining the panel, please send abstracts of up to 250 words to Sara Safransky (sara.e.safransky@vanderbilt.edu) and Tessa Eidelman (tessa.a.eidelman@vanderbilt.edu) by October 15. Selections will be made by October 20.

Black Land & Labor Initiative (BILI). 2017. Action Toolkit, available at http://blacklandandliberation.org.

Chicago Anti-Eviction Campaign (CEAC). 2009. Taking our human right to housing into our own hand: Chicago forms an anti-eviction Campaign. Available here:http://chicagoantieviction.org/2009/11/taking-our-human-right-to-housing-into.html.

Rameau, M. 2008. Take Back the Land: Land, Gentrification and the Umoja Village Shantytown. Miami: Nia Press.

Right to the City Alliance (RTCA). 2017. See http://righttothecity.org/about/member-organizations/.

Deleuze, Guattari, Democracy, and Farmers’ Initiatives in Oaxaca

Branden Born and I gave a talk at the International Conference of Anarchist Geographies and Geographers last month.  Here is the text and slides:

Introduction

Hi everyone. I am Mark Purcell and this is Branden Born. I am a political theorist who is trying to develop a radical conception of democracy as a political way forward in our current context. Branden is a planner who works on food systems and food justice, and who has been doing research with farmers in rural Oaxaca for the past 5 years or so.

Neither of us is an anarchist. And neither of us is a geographer either really (maybe I am). But we think, or at least we hope, that we have something useful to say for both anarchists and geographers.

This talk grows out of a paper in which we explore the resonance between 1) a political theory of democracy inspired mostly by the work of Deleuze and Guattari, and 2) the projects and initiatives of rural Oaxacans to rethink and reappropriate their food system in small but important ways.

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I am going to talk about the political theory, and Branden will talk about the Oaxacan cases.

Desiring-Production as Immanent Power

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The political theory of democracy that we present in the paper draws inspiration from Deleuze and Guattari’s obsession with desiring-production. Desiring-production is, for them, the only creative force in the world. All other forces – the State, capital, the family, the school – forces we think of as “the powers that be,” are unproductive forces, forces that are only able to act in the world by capturing and channeling the productive force of desiring-production. They call these unproductive forces “apparatuses of capture.”

We want to highlight one apparatus – the State – an apparatus that is dear to Deleuze and Guattari’s heart as well. In the case of the State, the immanent power of actual people – their desiring-production – is surrendered to an artificial entity – the State – and this artificial entity is other than them and is sovereign over them. The immanent power of people themselves, in other words, is captured by the transcendent authority of the State as an apparatus of capture. Of course Hobbes thought this situation was fine, but Deleuze and Guattari consider it unbearable. They badly want to escape the transcendent power of the State (and the other apparatuses of capture) and liberate the immanent power of people themselves.

Don’t Fight, Flee

How is this to be done? Deleuze and Guattari tell us not to fight against the apparatuses of capture, not to try to destroy them, or use them for our own purposes. They say, rather, that we should flee. We should escape the apparatuses, on what they call “lines of flight,” and set about creating and producing according to our desire.

Now of course such escape is not easy, and even when we succeed in getting away, if we are a single line of flight, we are easily recaptured by the apparatuses. So Deleuze and Guattari say we must seek out and connect to others in flight, so that we might flee in co-operation. Such collective flight, if it can bring together enough lines, if it can establish enough connections, can create greater and greater agglomerations of flight, to the point that they create what Deleuze and Guattari call “a new land.” This new land is not a new regime, not a new set of apparatuses different from the previous ones. It is a land made up of flight, a land where the apparatuses have been so thoroughly evacuated by flight that they wither, and become bereft.

Deleuze and Guattari are not reformists, they are revolutionaries. They envision that in this “new land” immanent power will pervade, and transcendent power will be diminished to the point of insignificance. What this means is that in the new land people manage their affairs for themselves, rather than having their affairs managed for them. This is what we call democracy.

Immanent Organization

This new land, made up of elements in flight, will not be a new social order, but that does not mean it will utterly lack organization. Lines in flight can and should, for Deleuze and Guattari, create forms of organization, or regularity, or routine. They might create rhizomes, as they sometimes say, or acentered networks, or subject-groups, or free associations, (or even soviets). The key is that this organization must always remain fluid, and immanent to people themselves, and it must never take on a fixed, transcendent authority.

And this will be an ongoing struggle, Deleuze and Guattari say. Transcendent authority will always re-emerge within these immanent institutions. It must be constantly warded off if the new land is to be maintained.

But how can we be expected to do all this?” the rhetorical question goes, with its implied answer, “It’s impossible!” Our answer is that we are already doing this. We just need to pay attention. In our talk, we choose to pay attention to Oaxaca, to how the activities of people there resonate with this idea of democracy. But Oaxaca is not alone, it is one of many efforts by people to take up the project of governing themselves. To take up the project of democracy.

Let me turn it over to Branden now:

The case I want to discuss is in Oaxaca, an excellent site to examine food and social movements and governance. The case, while illustrative, is not unique—we think if you look, you will find such examples in all sorts of places, and Ophelie and Stefano presented such examples in yesterday’s sessions.

There are many possible examples in Oaxaca alone, including:

  • Oaxaca’s self-management after the 2006 teacher and then community uprising that was violently met by the state until the state withdrew for months from the operations of the city.
  • Pueblos Mancomunados, a region in the Sierra Norte about an hour and a half drive from Oaxaca City, in which eight communities, each governed by rules negotiated before and during the Spanish Conquest, come together to govern their collective space and manage a widely recognized and ecotourism project for local economic development and collective natural resource management.
  • CEDICAM: The Center for Integral Small Farmer Development in the Mixteca—the one I’d like to discuss today

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It is important to provide some context for their work. The Mixteca is one of the most environmentally degraded places on the planet. Since at least the Conquest, it was logged and has been under land management practices that have led to a loss of trees and plant matter, a decrease in topsoil and its ability to hold and infiltrate water, and soil that lacks fertility.

Through federal government programs associated with Green Revolution technology, farmers received subsidized petrochemical inputs and seeds. Notably, these seeds were likely part of an American agricultural products dumping strategy, and eventually included transgenic crops.

Within a few years, after a time of increased yields, the farmers saw a decrease in overall yields, and this was combined with the connection to a financial model of debt and the use of external agricultural inputs: in most cases farmers were encouraged to not even save their own seeds.

Add to that that the cultural perspective—Mexicans see themselves as “people of corn”—and that transgenic corn is highly controversial and threatening to long standing ways of campesino life, and the ground was set for local non-state action. In Deleuze and Guattari’s terminology, the seeds of flight were sown.

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CEDICAM

To summarize their work, I would say they do food sovereignty through local community development.

CEDICAM is a non-profit organization operating in the Mixteca, a political cultural region in western Oaxaca. About two hours drive to the west of Oaxaca City, CEDICAM has programs in Nochixtlan and approximately 22 surrounding villages. They work through a markedly decentralized, community-based model where facilitators (who organize at a regional level) and promoters (who live and work in-community) organize projects based on individual community needs and interests.

CEDICAM has little organizational hierarchy, and little centralization (though have a home office in Nochixtlan—this was supposed to be a central demonstration farm, but that model didn’t work as communities are far away and participants are busy farming, so they changed the model).

Across the approximately 22 pueblos, they have a set of general projects they have become expert in, and the number of participating communities fluctuates depending on projects the communities engage with. The projects sometimes finish and then CEDICAM may leave the community—which indicates the non-permanence of the institution.

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So what are the projects? They work on soil conservation, water conservation, reforestation, sustainable agriculture, and the empowerment of women in the community, all done by farmer-to-farmer, person-to-person engagement.

Some specific project types include, and are mostly of a technological nature:

  • Construction of rock walls, terracing, and trenching to increase water infiltration and decrease runoff
  • Soil building through vermiculture, cover crops, and composting
  • Multi-cropping through the milpa system (corn, beans, squash): symbiotic crops that work on the micro/plot level.
  • Seed saving instead of federal seeds (Procampo) or Monsanto
  • Reduction of petrochemical inputs.

These projects emphasize a certain imperfect horizontality, as they grow through farmer to farmer engagement, even though the facilitators, while farmers themselves, operate at a regional level.

Through these projects the communities are trying to preserve local culture, historic traditions, food—amount and cultural connection, and genetic diversity of their crops.

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So how do they do these projects? Are they as impossible as critics of radical democracy might suggest? We don’t think so (though they aren’t easy).

CEDICAM is clear: they listen first: what does community want/need? Then they share what they know, without demanding any particular strategy. Knowledge is transmitted campesino a campesino; they demonstrate by doing and learn by example, teaching workshops, they don’t impose technologies/use appropriate technologies.

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One of the significant things about CEDICAM and what they are doing becomes clear when you see their whole body of work. What at first may appear to be a set of unrelated projects comes together as a community driven holistic land management approach to issues of food security, food sovereignty, and climate change. The organization—and their projects—are emergent, locally controlled, and flexible. Communities and individuals learn from each other and help one another outside of state or economic over-systems.

We think they their work resonates with images of Deleuze and Guattari’s new land—they demonstrate at least flight and rhizomatic organization. Are they perfect, or pure? No. Do they retain elements of the system from which they flee but still sit in? Yes.

But we think they give us glimpses of what parts of a new land might look like, and again, we think these examples are everywhere, and could teach us a lot, if only we learned how to look for them.

CFP on the Common(s)

From Ursula Lang:

Call for Papers: Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers
AAG 2018 – New Orleans, April 10-14, 2018

The Commons, Commoning and Co-becomings: Enacting Postcapitalist Futures & Nurturing Life in Common

Session Organizers: Ursula Lang (Rhode Island School of Design), Gustavo Garcia (Universidad de Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras), and Neera Singh (University of Toronto)

There has been an explosion of interest in the commons not just as a viable model for environmental governance, but also as nurturing grounds for postcapitalist politics. Scholars working on the commons in common-pool resources theory in the Ostrom tradition have traditionally focused on the commons as shared natural resources, highlighting “rules-in-use” and institutional arrangements. However, recent work in autonomous Marxist tradition focuses on the shared commonwealth of humanity and the role of the commons in nurturing postcapitalist subjectivities, alternate forms of production and provisioning, and ways of relating and valuing life in common (Caffentzis and Federici 2014, Linebaugh 2009, Bollier and Helfrich 2014).

Geographers have contributed and responded to growing scholarship and praxis on the commons, where the commons and commoning are seen as advancing other-than-capitalist community economies (Gibson-Graham, 2006); counter hegemonic common senses (Garcia Lopez et al 2017); challenging enclosure and accumulation by dispossession (Jeffrey et al 2012, Hodkinson 2012, Paudel 2016,); as nurturing grounds for collective subjectivity (Singh, 2017); and as creation of new urban commons and hybrid forms of governance  (Chatterton 2010, Baviskar and Gidwani 2011, Eizenberg 2012, Lang 2014, Turner 2016). We are especially drawn to scholarship that views the commons and commoning as practices for fostering postcapitalist subjectivity and life in common.

In this session, we invite empirical and conceptual papers that examine the role of the commons in fostering other-than-capitalist ways of being and relating to the more-than-human world – of nurturing subjectivities of ‘being-in-common’ with the rest of the world. We seek to connect lived practices with emerging academic attention on affective and relational ecologies of living and being in common.

Some possible themes include:
1. The commons as nurturing grounds of subjectivity.
2. The commons as a source of sustaining life through relations of care and cultivation.
3. Different conceptions of human in the Anthropocene. How do ways of being in common and relating to the commons recognize or enable different ways of being human to emerge and flourish? (e.g. the Anthropo-not-seen, la Cadena)
4. What work do commons do – in the world, on commoners, on capacities for co-becomings?
5. Rhythms and temporalities of commons. How might new commons emerge, and how are commons sustained?
6. Struggles against enclosure of the commons.
7. What are the limits of the commons?
8. Value and commoning. How does engagement with the practices of commoning lead to different ways of conceptualizing value?

Please send abstracts of not more than 250 words by October 10, to Ursula Lang, Neera Singh, and Gustavo Garcia Lopez (ursula.a.lang@gmail.com, neera.singh@gmail.com, garcial.gustavo@gmail.com). We will let participants know by October 15, and you will need to submit an AAG pin to us by October 20.

References
Baviskar and Gidwani (2011) Urban Commons. Economic and Political Weekly 46(50)
Bollier and Helfrich (2014) Patterns of Commoning. The Commons Strategies Group.
Chatterton (2010) Seeking the urban common: Furthering the debate on spatial justice. City 14: 6, 625-628
Eizenberg (2012) Actually existing commons: Three moments of space of community gardens in New York City. Antipode 44(3):764-782
Caffentzis & Federici (2014) Commons against and beyond capitalism. Community Development Journal, 49(suppl 1), i92-i105.
García López, Velicu, & D’Alisa (2017) Performing Counter-Hegemonic Common(s) Senses: Rearticulating Democracy, Community and Forests in Puerto Rico. Capitalism Nature Socialism, 1-20.
Gibson-Graham JK (2006) A Postcapitalist Politics. Univ of MN Press.
Jeffrey, McFarlane, Vasudevan (2012) Rethinking Enclosure: Space, Subjectivity and the Commons. Antipode 44(4):1247-1267
Lang (2014) The common life of yards. Urban Geography 35(6):852-869
Linebaugh (2009) The Magna Carta Manifesto. Univ of CA Press.
Paudel (2016) Re-inventing the commons: community forestry as accumulation without dispossession in Nepal. Journal of Peasant Studies. 43(5): 989-1009
Singh (2017) Becoming a commoner: The commons as site for affective socio-nature encounters and co-becomings. Ephemera. (forthcoming)
Turner (2016) Political ecology III: The commons and commoning. Progress in Human Geography. Aug 26, 2016

CFP: Feminist Urban Theory

From Linda Peake:

Urban Affairs Association

Toronto, Ontario

April 4 – 7, 2018

Session organizers:  Linda Peake (York University), Darren Patrick (York University), Rajyashree Reddy (University of Toronto), Sue Ruddick (University of Toronto) and Gokboru Tanyildiz (York University).

Call for Papers, deadline for conference paper abstract submissions October 1, 2017

A feminist urban theory for our time: rethinking social reproduction, the urban and its constitutive outside


 Feminist approaches to the urban have long focused on social reproduction—the gendered organization of the household, paid and unpaid reproduction of labour-power, and migration to cities.  However, in the current juncture, what is at stake is the social reproduction of the planet itself. Social reproduction is at work in many sites and scales beyond the urban—including bodily, territorial, land-based, regional, and ecological, to name but a few. Proceeding from a focus on social justice rather than difference, we invite papers that explore and expand feminist approaches to social reproduction from a variety of socio-spatial ontologies and from a range of orientations—including but not limited to anti-racist, anti-colonial, trans, eco-justice and indigenous perspectives—in order to understand how social reproduction is configuring both the urban and its constitutive outside.

We especially welcome papers from scholars working from an anti-colonial perspective, and/or outside the boundaries of North America and Europe.

If you would like to participate please send titles and a 250-word abstract to Linda Peake (lpeake@yorku.ca) by Wednesday, September 27, 2017.

CFP: Mapping Urban In/justice

From Dillon Mahmoudi:

CFP AAG 2018: Mapping Urban In/justice
New Orleans, LA / April 10-14, 2018

Organizers: Taylor Shelton (Mississippi State University) and Dillon Mahmoudi (University of Maryland Baltimore County)

How can mapping reveal previously unseen urban injustices or misunderstood phenomenon?

In 1973, David Harvey remarked that “mapping even more evidence of man’s patent inhumanity to man is counter-revolutionary in the sense that it allows the bleeding-heart liberal in us to pretend we are contributing to a solution when in fact we are not.” But rather than simply documenting these inhumanities, examples abound of mapping and data being used to actively challenge entrenched forms of inequality and the processes that produce them. Building on the power imbued in maps and data by powerful institutions, mapping is increasingly leveraged as a key means of drawing attention to, and developing new understandings of, urban inequality. While there is a persistent challenge in ensuring that cartographic visualization and quantitative data analysis do more than just “expiate guilt without our ever being forced to face the fundamental issues,” these tools and methods have just as much potential to advance a substantive, radical critique of the status quo as any other approach.

This session seeks papers that demonstrate the utility of not only thinking critically about the intersections of mapping and urban inequality, but actually doing mapping and data analysis in order to reveal and better understand the variety of social and spatial forms these injustices take in contemporary cities. While the utility of maps and data to bring attention to urban injustices is powerful in its own right, these kinds of representations can not only help to prove that such injustices exist, but also allow us to develop new ways of conceptualizing and addressing them.

Possible topics might include, but are not limited to:
  • Use of novel datasets or visualization techniques to understand urban injustices
  • Inequalities in housing, transportation, infrastructure, etc.
  • Counter-mapping as an activist strategy
  • Participatory and community-based mapping
  • Mixed-methods mapping (e.g., mental and cognitive mapping, qualitative GIS)
  • Mapping that redraws boundaries
  • Power and il/legibility in mapping

Interested participants should send abstracts of 250 words or less to Taylor Shelton (taylor.shelton@msstate.edu) and Dillon Mahmoudi (dillonm@umbc.edu) by October 11.

CFP: Friendship and Caring

From Patricia Lopez:

AAG CFP: Friendship in the Academy: Toward a Politics of Caring With

Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers, New Orleans, LA, April 10-14

Organized by Patricia J. Lopez (Dartmouth College) and Kathryn Gillespie (Wesleyan University)

Geographers have long taken seriously the importance of building intimate relationships within the field (Lloyd et al 2012; Pratt 2012; Swarr and Nagar 2010), “slow scholarship” that takes account of time inherent to building relationships, both in the field and within the academy (Berg and Seeber 2016; Mountz et al 2015), and intimate relationalities as a generative methodology (Donovan and Moss 2017). And these intimate relationships are not limited only to the human realm; indeed, deep relationships of care and friendship manifest between academics and other species involved in their work, although these are radically undertheorized. Following on this work, we aim to unpack friendship in the academy through a politics of “caring with,” with a specific focus on friendship as an undertheorized site of relationality within the academy. We center friendship and its possibilities as a politics of ‘caring with’ in order to “think closely about [our] responsibilities to [our]selves and to others” (Tronto 2013, x). For as Judith Butler (2004, 23) notes, “Let’s face it. We’re undone by each other. And if we’re not, we’re missing something.”

Even as we center the relational dimensions of friendship in the academy, we acknowledge that it is not always easy to build deep and trusting friendships within the confines of academic relationships – as colleagues, as researchers in the field, as collaborators, etc. Driven in part by the neoliberalization of the university, by the fundamentally individualistic nature of the academy, and by the deep anthropocentrism embedded in these institutions, there are a range of ways that the academy puts enormous strain and pressure on friendships and relationships. This occurs, for example, through: competitiveness between and among colleagues; normative, masculinist expectations around field research and the human and nonhuman relationships that ‘count’ as viable ethnographic data; the devaluation of collaborative work (and the kinds of collaborators who ‘count’); disavowal of the slow scholarship model that is necessary / inherent in building rich relationships in field sites (becoming community members as opposed to studying up on the community); and the expectation of geographic mobility (through moving for jobs, attending conferences, putting strain on home relationships of care for human and nonhuman co-habitants, etc.).

The challenges of building friendships in the academy are not insignificant and we are interested in exploring and honoring those; yet, at the same time, friendships built with humans and other animals bring relational meaning and caring into the work we do as academics. For as Vicky Lawson (2007) reminds us, “We are a caring discipline,” even as Joan Tronto (2013 140) insists that “[t]o care well requires the recognition that care is relational.”

To that end, we ask:

  • How are friendships made and sustained in the academy?
  • How might thinking in multispecies terms about friendship in the academy open new ethical and political questions?
  • How do normative understandings about how our subjectivity as academics (and all of the hyphens that come with this antecedent; e.g., scholar-activist, etc.) fail to acknowledge (or allow for) the richness and possibilities that emerge from deeper relationships in and around the academy?
  • How might a rethinking of these relationships engender a more pointed politics of caring with — not merely in an instrumental way (e.g., allowing ‘deeper access’ to research informants; leading to collaborative work; lending to additional care labor), but rather, as a radical and transformative praxis that, in turn, might build “greater trust for one another, and thus a greater capacity to care for this collective purpose” (Tronto 2013, xii; Lopez and Gillespie 2016)?

We hope to put together both a paper session and a panel. Please submit abstracts for the paper session and/or expressions of interest in the panel session to Patricia Lopez (patricia.j.lopez@dartmouth.edu) and Kathryn Gillespie (kgillespie@wesleyan.edu) by October 15, 2017.

 

AAG CFP: Platform Urbanism

From Scott Rodgers:

Platform Urbanism

Call for Papers/Panelists
Association of American Geographers Conference 2018
New Orleans, USA, 10-14 April 2018

Organizers
Susan Moore (University College London)
Scott Rodgers (Birkbeck, University of London)

Sponsors 
Digital Geographies Specialty Group
Media and Communication Geography Specialty Group
Urban Geography Speciality Group

Outline

Talk about ‘platforms’ is today all-pervasive: platform architecture, platform design, platform ecosystem, platform governance, platform markets, platform politics, platform thinking. But just what are platforms? And how might we understand their emergent urban geographies?

As Tarleton Gillespie (2010) argues, the term ‘platform’ clearly does discursive work for commercial entities such as Facebook, Amazon, Uber, Airbnb and Google. It allows them to be variably (and often ambiguously) described and imagined: as technical platforms; platforms for expression; or platforms of entrepreneurial opportunity. Indeed, as emergent spaces, platforms – both commercial and nonprofit – entail so many ambitions, activities, services, exchanges, forums, infrastructures, and ordinary practices that conceptualizing their general dynamics is difficult, perhaps even pointless.

Yet platforms do appear to have considerable implications, geographical as well as political. For Benjamin Bratton (2015), cloud-based platforms such as Facebook, Amazon and Google form a fundamental layer of what he calls planetary-scale computation, perhaps representing new forms of geopolitical sovereignty. This ‘sovereignty’ is, however, neither generalized nor homogeneous: in manifests in geographically uneven intensities and extents.

This session invites original research and conceptual reflections that explore, debate and critique the notion of an emergent ‘platform urbanism’. Recently, Nick Srnicek (2016) deployed the phrase ‘platform capitalism’ to encapsulate his argument that platforms not only mark a new kind of firm, but a new way of making economies. Here – in a move similar to Henri Lefevbre’s (1970/2003) in The urban revolution – we suggest a speculative substitution of ‘urbanism’ for ‘capitalism’, placing an emphasis on the possibility of irreducible, co-generative dynamics between platforms and the urban.

Contributions may address a wide range of commercial and nonprofit platforms – including those related to social networking, user-generated content, location-based technologies, mapping and the geoweb, goods and services, marketing, and gaming – and their relationships with various forms of urban living and urban spaces. 

Expressions of Interest

We intend to organize 1-2 paper sessions, depending on quantity and quality of submissions, followed by a panel discussion session.

Expressions of interest must be emailed to both Susan Moore (susan.moore@ucl.ac.uk) and Scott Rodgers (s.rodgers@bbk.ac.uk) by 1 October 2017. Those proposing a paper presentation should send an abstract of 250 words; those interested in participating as a panellist should include a short outline of their intended contribution in their email.

References

Bratton, B. H. (2016). The stack: On software and sovereignty. MIT press.

Gillespie, T. (2010). The politics of ‘platforms’. New Media & Society12(3), 347-364.

Lefebvre, H. (1970/2003). The urban revolution (originally published as La révolution urbaine). University of Minnesota Press.

Srnicek, N. (2016). Platform capitalism. John Wiley & Sons.