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Posts Tagged ‘resistance’

bahdies

In early September 2008, thousands of anarchists and other radicals descended on the Republican National Convention in the Twin Cities to ‘crash the party.’81 The protests lost focus after the McCain campaign cancelled the first day of the convention – possibly nervous about the impending protests, even though the official claim was that the cancellation was to wait for Hurricane Gustav to make landfall.82 Confrontations between riot police and anarchists were numerous, but for days, a huge police force outnumbered and outmaneuvered them, and prevented them from being more than a mild nuisance.83 Yet on Thursday night during McCain’s acceptance speech as the Republican Party nominee for President, a series of Code Pink anti-war protestors rose from the gallery and interrupted the event.84 McCain, looking irritated, dismissed the protestor by saying “Americans want us to stop yelling at each other, ok?”85 Another protestor soon interrupted McCain. Subsequently, McCain was so distracted that he stopped his speech to directly address the protests and urged the audience to ignore them. Those protests, along with McCain off-the-cuff responses, soon became the most memorable part of an otherwise routine speech.

Beyond Signification: Or, How to Have a Good Time

Strictly speaking, it was the Republican audience that interrupted McCain’s speech and not the Code Pink protestors. Every time a lonely protestor raised their voice, a whole chorus of ‘USA! USA!’ thundered through the convention center to drown them out. In that way, the delegates turned potentially insignificant irritations into event-shaping disruptions. If the crowd had responded as they did the day before, when two Code Pink protestors rushed toward the stage during Sarah Palin’s speech only to be snatched by the Secret Service at the last moment, then McCain would have continued without interruption.86 Yet it appeared difficult to calm down McCain’s chanting crowd – a group so incensed by the mere presence of a dissenter in their midst that they were compelled to match her verbal outbursts with an overwhelming vocal response of their own. This excessive response is indicative of the paranoia present in a group obsessed with the politics of identification – so anxious to erase an otherwise minor disruption, the intensity of the crowd’s reaction reveals the precarity of the imaginary fantasies that bind together state discourses. Caught within a perspective that structures relations in terms of identity and opposition, the politics of identification leads to an aggressive policing of borders that reacts violently to anything that evades categorization.87 (more…)

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negatif-affectusThis post contained an draft version of a dissertation section. A more recent version is now available on the works page.

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no future2
This post contained an draft version of a dissertation section. A more recent version is now available on the works page.

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http://streetfiles.org/photos/detail/1670910This post contained an draft version of a dissertation section. A more recent version is now available on the works page.

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NEW KIDS ON THE BLACK BLOCK (pdf)

100_0209-1

During debates about organization theory, I consistently cite this wonderful piece of ethnography: Chris Low’s interview of London youth who tellingly describe their entry into the black bloc.

No academic studies, no political theory, just straight-up personal narrative.

I’ll leave you to draw your own conclusions. /awc (more…)

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This post contained an draft version of a dissertation section. A more recent version is now available on the works page.

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Please check out this wonderful new publication, Three Word Chant, by the folks at Giles Corey Press.

If you like what you see, please consider donating some startup funds to get the print version of their summer catalogue off the ground.

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