Turbulence: Ideas for Movement Issue #1

Turbulence: Ideas for Movement

Issue #1: What would it mean to win?

Turbulence is a journal-cum-newspaper that we hope will become an ongoing space in which to think through, debate and articulate the political, social, economic and cultural theories of our movements, as well as the networks of diverse practices and alternatives that surround them. The first issue, produced in newspaper form and distributed en masse at the mobilisation around the 2007 G8 Summit in Heiligendamm, Germany, addresses the question: What would it mean to win?

At the end of the 20th century many involved in various movements around the world had the sense that 'we were winning'. In 2007, things appear much more complicated. The Turbulence collective asked 14 groups, collectives and individuals to confront this essential question…

The articles from the first issue are now available to read and download online.

Editorial: Are we winning?
Turbulence Collective

Politics in an age of fantasy
Stephen Duncombe

Enclosing the enclosers
Gustavo Esteva

Singularisation of the common
Sandro Mezzadra & Gigi Roggero

A new weather front
Paul Sumburn

Money for nothing?
Max Henninger

Walking in the right direction?
Ben Trott

Organise local, strike global
Valery Alzaga & Rodrigo Nunes

Solidarity economics
Euclides André Mance

Compositional power
Todd Hamilton & Nate Holdren

'Becoming-Woman?' In theory or in practice?
Michal Osterweil

Politicising sadness
Colectivo Situaciones

Worlds in motion
The Free Association

Nick Dyer-Witherford

The crazy before the new
Harry Halpin & Kay Summer

Turbulence Editorial Collective: David Harvie, Keir Milburn, Tadzio Mueller, Rodrigo Nunes, Michal Osterweil, Kay Summer, Ben Trott, David Watts


Please send any comments, criticisms and/or translations of articles to editors@turbulence.org.uk


source - posting on the research on anarchism list.

not read any of the items yet be interested to hear from anyone who has

Posted By

Jun 13 2007 09:35


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Joseph Kay
Jun 13 2007 09:58

the intro reads like someone's swallowed a copy of 'multitude' and developed hiccups grin

i'll have a read through a few though, always interesting to see what lessons are learned from summity stuff.

Joseph Kay
Jun 13 2007 10:45
Solidarity Economics wrote:
This meant that solidarity finance could enable the emergence and maintenance of worker-managed productive enterprises that employed low-impact technologies and promoted the highest social benefit. The products of these enterprises started being commercialised in circuits of solidarity trade through shops, fairs, international fair trade systems and even internet sales. This in turn enabled consumers to replace the products and services they bought from capitalist enterprises with products and services produced within the solidarity economy, feeding back into a system of promotion of welfare for workers and consumers, environmental protection and sustainable development.

sounds a lot like 'ethical capitalism' - the whole notion of a parallel 'solidarity economy' based on need not profit relies on this:

Solidarity Economics wrote:
Beyond social forums and summit mobilisations, the defence of sovereign economies must happen in the choice of products we consume, and the ethical decision to employ our income to strengthen certain economic sectors rather than others.

i.e. ethical consumerism; either workers having enough disposable income to buy premium-priced 'ethical' commodities, or 'solidarity producers' successfully undercutting the costs of regular capitalist firms by managing their own exploitation better than a private boss. the author disputes this and says it isn't capitalism or subject to competitive forces, but i'm not sure how.

i mean there's a workers' co-op supermarket in brighton, even if they especially buy from zapatistas and the like, how does buying from them instead of tesco challenge the commodification of our world and our labour?

none of this is to say that a self managed capitalism is exactly the same as regular capitalism (though the author provides little info on workers conditions in the 'solidarity economy,' complaining that the burden of proof should lie with skeptics/critics) - just that i can't see how it constitutes "a revolution in the mode of production" - i mean what are we meant to do, accumulate enough 'solidarity capital' to buy-out non-peripheral enterprises and add them to the network? or are we back to the old-fashioned route of appealing to the state (to co-opt our co-ops with copious cash? he seems to like the 'popular governments' in latin america) or just seizing the means of production, in which case settling for self-managed commodity exchange/accumulation seems to be setting our sights a bit low.

Joseph Kay
Jun 13 2007 10:58

scanning the other stuff looks like the usual activist mish-mash of postmodernism and social democracy. nick dyer-witheford's argument of 'the common' as a cell-form alternative to the commodity is interesting, though he looks to the 'solidarity economics' above as an example, and says it should be protected by governments like in latin america, so looks like 'radical' social democracy again ... neutral

i mean i haven't read all of it by any means, so call me out if i'm talking shit or if i've overlooked anything good, but it looks like most of the 'lessons' learned by northern activists blockading summits is that things look really great in latin america through a thousand-mile rose-tinted telescope.

David in Atlanta
Jun 13 2007 23:14
Jul 26 2007 14:21

Quick update (July 2007):

For those who prefer reading hard copy nicely printed out, Issue 1 of Turbulence has been done in newspaper format, with each article taking up a double page spread. Something to read on the tube or bus maybe? I have a copy and couldn't see a price on it - came as a freebie from AK Distribution. (to whom thanks)

And for those who prefer their politics wrapped up in academic respectability, the same issue is apparently going to be issues in journal format as well. (Unlikely to be free!)

Rob Ray
Jul 26 2007 14:30

Yeah tbh most of it read pretty poorly to my eyes, an awful lot of attempted summit-activism justification in the early sections, weak ideas for what to aim for in future. Couple of interesting articles though, the hostile interview of the IWW organiser is fun, as are disconnected bits of the critique of a global basic wage.