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Cover for: Commoning the city

Commoning the city

Reinventing togetherness

Instead of uniformity, commoning urban spaces offers an inclusive life, open to differences. Through self-managed initiatives, the ‘right to the city’ becomes the right to collectively produce it through creative cooperation.

Cover for: La comuna o nada

La comuna o nada

Building an autonomous tenants movement in Los Angeles

Tenants are the new proletariat. Rents are among the main sources of global capital accumulation, and tenants’ vulnerability is increasing. Using their shared experiences as a basis for struggle, School of Echoes tells the story of organizing against gentrification, taking issue with the affordability discourse and the institutionalized housing movement.

Cover for: The body and the meat-grinder

The body and the meat-grinder

Cultural representations of war disablement

For the physically disabled, curiosity and passing glances can seem to stigmatize and mark out. Is our gaze yet another tool of oppression? Can we find words for injury that do not wound the injured? Do texts and images help? Piotr Krupiński calls for more voices to be heard.

Cover for: Slightly constitutional

Sinn Féin’s breakthrough in Ireland’s general election in February ended the century-long dominance of the ‘Civil War parties’ in the Republic. On the left, the victory was celebrated as providing a ‘mandate for change’. But Sinn Féin’s image problem remains an obstacle. Unjustly so?

Cover for: Poverty or virus?

Poverty or virus?

Lebanon’s uprising despite the pandemic

The corona crisis acts as a double-edged sword for Lebanese protesters: it reinforces the grievances that have fuelled the uprising, but it also provides an opportunity to political elites to bolster their support, offering welfare for political loyalty.

Cover for: Texts without words

Textiles are more than just yarn – they are memory. Migrants pack them in their bags to recreate the homes they have lost. Burcu Sahin explores the timeless language encoded in stitching.

Cover for: Lessons from an unfolding emergency

The pandemic prompts fundamental questions. How do we define society’s relationship to nature? How resilient are our democracies to the abuse of emergency powers? How far can science dictate political decision-making? And will the primacy of the economy remain unassailable?

Cover for: Prized possessions

Prized possessions

Ágnes Heller, Krzysztof Michalski, Miriam Rasch and the wisdom we borrow

Dataism is the new positivism, promising to make humans more effective. But we’ve seen horrific attempts at perfecting humans before. Instead, we need a better understanding of differences, and the wisdom that lies in the love of life.

Cover for: Paradox Europa

Paradox Europa

Opening lecture, Vienna Humanities Festival 2019

Ágnes Heller transformed a troubled life: ‘I lived through terrible things. But I had to understand them. […] Philosophers do not despair.’ Shalini Randeria and Ludger Hagedorn honour her legacy on her birthday.

Cover for: Friction and the aesthetics of the smooth

Friction and the aesthetics of the smooth

Ethics in times of dataism

Seamless design is an important dogma of dataism. Without unpredictable behaviour, however, there’s no data to retrieve. A wholly predictable future is just a continuous present, a tyranny of choices on offer.

Cover for: Clapping or caring

Clapping or caring

Applause as a form of social distancing

Although celebrated as a gesture of solidarity, the act of applauding essential workers is really a form of social distancing from them. It is the fate of heroes that their bodies are being used to climb to the heights of national glory.

Cover for: Victory Day: The biography of a Soviet holiday

What began in the Soviet Union as an occasion for military propaganda gradually became a national holiday to honour veterans of the ‘Great Patriotic War’. Today, 9 May is both a geopolitical tool for the Russian state and a grassroots practice, serving as a way for Russian-speaking minorities abroad to express their cultural identity.

Cover for: In the shadow of victory

In the shadow of victory

The memory of WWII in the Russian–Ukrainian conflict

Seventy-five years after the end of the Second World War, another war is being fought in its shadow. The ongoing Ukrainian-Russian conflict is fuelled by recycled Soviet cliches. Memory of the victory over fascism, first weaponized by the Kremlin during the Orange Revolution, continues to frame the Russian view of Ukraine.

Cover for: Asocial distancing

Asocial distancing

The mistreatment of Roma and homeless people in the corona crisis

Corralling homeless people into gymnasiums and building walls around Roma settlements: the COVID-19 measures show their ugliest face when it comes to the overpolicing of marginalized groups. A European survey.

Cover for: Through a Stalinist lens

Through a Stalinist lens

An interview with Ernest Wyciszkiewicz

The conflict that flared up between Russia and Poland at the end of 2019 signalled a new level of aggression in Russian historical propaganda. Not only that: Poland has become the chief enemy. Seventy-five years after the end of WWII, Russia’s commemorative agenda is both geopolitical and domestic.

Cover for: Globalization demystified?

Globalization demystified?

Neoliberalism’s corona shock

The corona pandemic has brought globalization’s defects into sharp relief. Across the spectrum, neoliberalism is being challenged. Can the narrative of beneficent globalization be revived? And as US hegemony fades, can the institutions of global governance survive?

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