Anarchism: A Documentary
Tuesday July 13, 2010 15:10 by Steffi and Aragorn
Anarchism: A Documentary
To the best of our knowledge, no comprehensive documentary about anarchism has ever been made. This is a project to create a documentary which is as much a basic introduction to anarchism, as well as a story which looks at anarchism historically and globally.
To the best of our knowledge, no comprehensive documentary about anarchism has ever been made.
Of the often very dated films on anarchist themes that are available, most either misrepresent anarchism (1981’s pro anarcho-capitalist ‘Anarchism in America’), are focused on specific moments in anarchist history (‘Living Utopia’, ‘The Angry Brigade’, ‘Lucio the Anarchist’, etc), or discuss the wider social justice / alter-globalisation movements (‘Fourth World War’).
Such an absence is unfortunate, for we think that now, more than ever, a broad, accessible documentary introduction to anarchism would be of tremendous value to those of us who wish to share the history, ideas and promise of our diverse, protean movement with a general audience.
Instead of complaining though, we’re just going to knuckle down and make it ourselves!
We envisage creating, over the next year or so, an engaging, entertaining, relatively mainstream film that will cover – via interviews with prominent anarchists mixed with archival footage, narration, person-on-the-street discussions and explanatory animations – a historical overview of anarchism, an explanation of the core principles (anti-authoritarianism, anti-capitalism, mutual aid…you know the stuff!) and an exploration of all the contrasting but ultimately complementary views held by contemporary anarchists from around the world.
We’d also like to deliver a message of realistic hope and a call for action in this time of social and ecological crisis.
Being long-time anarchists ourselves, we recognise the importance of a supportive community in ensuring our project succeeds in fairly portraying both contemporary and historical anarchism and does not fall prey to personal biases or prejudices. We will thus be communicating openly and honestly with the broad anarchist community about our progress and underlying vision.
More pressingly though, we also recognise the importance of mutual aid and so, even though we’re soliciting it through capitalist channels, we humbly request your modest donations (at http://www.indiegogo.com/Anarchism-A-Documentary). These will help us with our frugal travel, eating and living expenses, as well as with editing and post-production costs. Those who cannot help financially are more than welcome to offer couches for the night. Shared dinners and good company will also be essential to the completion of this ambitious task we’ve set ourselves, and if you donate some music to the soundtrack we’d be eternally grateful :-)
We eagerly await your participation, your suggestions and your constructive criticisms. We promise to weigh them up fairly as long as you promise not to pepper pie us if, in some cases, we respectfully disagree.
With love and hope,
Steffi, Aragorn and friends
PS: Our facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Anarchism-A-Documentary/1...=info
Both pages linked here contain a FAQ section for further information.
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Recently during a discussion on organizing strategy that I was observing, more than participating in, a friend and comrade of mine emphasized the importance of listening in organizing. He wasn’t talking about listening in the sense of listening only to figure out how to market your ideas in more attractive language, or the kind of listening where you pretend to listen so that the other person is more willing to listen to you; he was talking about the kind of listening that attempts to really understand and consider what the person you’re communicating with is saying.
The point he was making wasn’t to submit to someone else’s point of view, instead of trying to impose yours; his point was to recognize that both you and the person you’re dialoguing with are equal human beings with something of value to contribute to a conversation. This doesn’t always mean that we can find common ground in dialogues; but it does mean that we should try to engage in dialogues in ways that open the possibility of finding common ground where it can be found; and where it can’t: clarifying and truly understanding our differences.
At the time, I really appreciated and still appreciate my friend’s emphasis on listening and the role of true dialogue and communication in organizing, which is based on speaking with rather than a speaking to other folks. Therefore, in an attempt to highlight and continue with this discussion, I wanted to draw on Paulo Freire’s fundamental piece on libertarian education, Pedagogy of the Oppressed. It’s not Freire’s only piece of writing; but it is definitely his most widely-read and influential work, and I believe that it has important insights to consider in thinking about how revolutionary consciousness is built: dialogically and in collective struggle.
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(reposted from illvox.org)