Move into the Light? Postscript to a turbulent 2007

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Joined: 29-11-07
Nov 29 2007 17:34
Move into the Light? Postscript to a turbulent 2007

Turbulence, the collective who produced a newspaper distributed -- primarily at the G8 protests in Heiligendamm in June -- asking the question, "What would it mean to win?" have just published a new text; a kind of post-script to the newspaper. I thought this might be a good place to discuss the text...

The whole text is online here:

And the piece starts as follows...

Move into the light?

Postscript to a turbulent 2007

It’s night time and a man is crawling around on his hands and knees, looking for his car keys underneath a lamp post. A woman comes along and starts to help him. After they’ve been searching together for a while the woman asks the man: “Are you sure this is where you dropped them?”

The man replies: “No, I think I dropped them somewhere else.”

“Then why are we looking here?” she enquires.

“Because this is where the light is.”

At the beginning of 2007, the Turbulence collective commissioned 14 articles from around the global ‘movement of movements’, asking authors: “What would it mean to win?” We edited their responses into a newspaper and printed 7,000 copies, most of which were distributed at the mobilisation against the G8 summit in Heiligendamm, Germany, in June. A few months later, we want to return to the question of winning.

As we resume our search it’s no surprise that we keep coming across the problem of visibility. When we think about winning, our eyes are drawn to things that are highly visible or easy-to-measure, such as institutional or legislative change, the opening of a social centre or an increase in membership. That’s where the light is. But we also need to assess victories in the less tangible though just as real realm of possibilities. Winning in this realm may involve increased potential, changes in perception or patterns of behaviour. Yet these seem to exist at the very edge of the luminous zone.

This problem leads into another: our experiences create their own luminosity and consequently their own areas of darkness. When we think about winning we are drawn to movements, people and events that are familiar to us; and we have expectations about how things should turn out if they are to constitute a victory.

So how can we overcome our night-blindness once we move beyond the familiar? ...

Note: The newspaper produced for Heiligendamm is online here too: