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date
17/12/2020
through
19/12/2020
language
English
 
location

The programme will be streamed
on this webpage from 17:00 CET.

For active participation
please join via Zoom.

entrance

Free event

The Coming South

This world order is made manifest not just in global geopolitics but also in the micro-environments of urban spaces, defining formal and informal relationships that range from those between nation states to those between local communities. Generations of political militants, intellectuals and activists have engaged with these issues - issues that are only exacerbated today, during the pandemic, and in the aftermath of the global financial crisis of 2008 which has demonstrated and worsened a number of other crises as the status quo of globalisation.

Questions are asked about the value of "western epistemologies" to the struggles of the subaltern, but what actually counts as a western epistemology, and what does this adjective - "western" - perhaps hide from view? What and who is "the South" today? Is there just one, or are there in fact a number of Souths that organise the hierarchy of the global division of labour and the struggles that are tied to it? And finally, what is solidarity in this context - is it a mere declaration of intent, or can it be sustained as a long-term sharing of transformative social objectives that resist the current state of affairs? The conference brings together a range of experiences and reflections to address these questions. 

Thursday 17 December

Struggles: Frameworks for Theory & Practice

Geographies of Freedom + Q&A

17:00–18:15 / Miguel Peres dos Santos / private screening

The Artworld. A Tourist Guide

18:15–19:00 / Yaiza Hernández Velázquez / lecture

Yaiza Hernández Velázquez's paper starts by offering an overview of the ubiquitous but differently inflected claims that since 1989, have been made on the basis of an "artworld" understood as a global entity. While some of the initial euphoria has been blunted by history, the interconnectedness of the biennial circuit and art market transactions continues to offer what for some is merely a mirage of the unfulfilled promise of a "borderless" capitalist world and for others a network that offers at least the potential for transnational solidarities. By taking some of this literature more seriously than it might have been intended, I will try to argue that we find in the tourist resort a better figure through which to understand the way in which the "artworld" has negotiated its global relations since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

A Lagoon of Paradoxes and Struggles

19:15–20:00 / Marco Baravalle / lecture

Venice is a city of paradoxes, a Southern European wonder governed by the Northern League party. Once gateway to the East, now chief town of a region where a certain Austro-Hungarian nostalgia is still perceptible. Venice emptied twice, first of its residents by over-tourism, now of tourists by the pandemic. The lagoon is the strange background where mammoth dams against the high tide intersect a mammoth corruption scandal and the threat of climate change. Venice and its crises, Venice and its struggles: against big ships, for housing rights, for the right to the city.

Situated Knowledges of Worldmaking in the Ghostly Present Tense

20:15–21:00 / Athena Athanasiou / lecture

At the heart of this inquiry lies a critical engagement with the present that might work to performatively instate another possibility for the question of the South (or, the South as question) at a moment marked by the corporatization and the securitization of public space through migrant disposability and the necropolitical distribution of capital, resources, and bodies. Affirming the embodied situatedness of critical epistemologies, I ask how criticality maps out trails of historical and political response-ability through which alternative imaginaries are potentially put forward. Involving ex-centric temporalities of unending crises and dispossessed political subjectivities of resisting (in) the present, criticality has thoroughgoing implications for transfiguring the present’s no longer and yet-to-come.

Friday 18 December

De/Exoticisations: Tourists, Refugees, Capital

Geographies of Freedom + Q&A

17:00–18:15 / Miguel Peres dos Santos / private screening

The Artworld. A Tourist Guide

18:15–19:00 / Yaiza Hernández Velázquez / lecture

Yaiza Hernández Velázquez's paper starts by offering an overview of the ubiquitous but differently inflected claims that since 1989, have been made on the basis of an "artworld" understood as a global entity. While some of the initial euphoria has been blunted by history, the interconnectedness of the biennial circuit and art market transactions continues to offer what for some is merely a mirage of the unfulfilled promise of a "borderless" capitalist world and for others a network that offers at least the potential for transnational solidarities. By taking some of this literature more seriously than it might have been intended, I will try to argue that we find in the tourist resort a better figure through which to understand the way in which the "artworld" has negotiated its global relations since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

A Lagoon of Paradoxes and Struggles

19:15–20:00 / Marco Baravalle / lecture

Venice is a city of paradoxes, a Southern European wonder governed by the Northern League party. Once gateway to the East, now chief town of a region where a certain Austro-Hungarian nostalgia is still perceptible. Venice emptied twice, first of its residents by over-tourism, now of tourists by the pandemic. The lagoon is the strange background where mammoth dams against the high tide intersect a mammoth corruption scandal and the threat of climate change. Venice and its crises, Venice and its struggles: against big ships, for housing rights, for the right to the city.

Situated Knowledges of Worldmaking in the Ghostly Present Tense

20:15–21:00 / Athena Athanasiou / lecture

At the heart of this inquiry lies a critical engagement with the present that might work to performatively instate another possibility for the question of the South (or, the South as question) at a moment marked by the corporatization and the securitization of public space through migrant disposability and the necropolitical distribution of capital, resources, and bodies. Affirming the embodied situatedness of critical epistemologies, I ask how criticality maps out trails of historical and political response-ability through which alternative imaginaries are potentially put forward. Involving ex-centric temporalities of unending crises and dispossessed political subjectivities of resisting (in) the present, criticality has thoroughgoing implications for transfiguring the present’s no longer and yet-to-come.

Saturday 19 December

Revolutions: Prospects in Counter-Revolutionary Times

Welcome and introduction

14:30–15:00

The Geographies of Freedom research project along the research meetings, public presentations, an installation by Jabu Arnell and several publications, consists also of an artistic research video essay that goes by the same name. Combining archival footage with contemporary imagery shot in Curaçao and The Netherlands, the film leads us through colonial narratives of dutch petrochemical imperialism and its relation to notions of freedom. By realigning temporal perceptions, the film proposes reflections on political, environmental and sociological issues.

Many-Worlds Rising

15:00–15:45 / Jonas Staal / lecture

The Global South stands not only as a terrain of brutal extraction, but also as a site of resistance where the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) declared its struggle for a “world of many worlds.” The EZLN’s definition of a “Fourth World War” against neoliberalism (after WWI and II, and the Cold War), established a planetary front against a system that The Red Nation has described as fundamentally “anti-life.” From the EZLN to the Kurdish revolution in Rojava, the worldings of the South embody a non-proprietary relation to our many-worlds that have become just as important to guide popular movements in the Global North. Facing the increasing power of the trillion-dollar company and the nationalist international, how are these struggles shaping the progressive internationals, planetary commonisms and transnational terrestrial alliances we so desperately need? And what is the role of art and cultural work in helping to shape collective imaginaries to agitate and mobilize for our many-worlds to overcome?

What Does it Mean to Produce Knowledge From Below?

16:00–16:45 / Vijay Prashad / lecture

"At Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research we work with a method to amplify the voices of our movements, to elaborate theory out of the theory and praxis of our movements. The general method is derived from the Marxist tradition of building theory from struggle."

Expected Futures. The Right to Imagine.

17:00–17:45 / Françoise Vergès / lecture

The Coming South, or the coming transformation which is the very idea of the future, the right to imagine a path for a good life and reviving the idea of the human. Rien n’est écrit d’avance, (Nothing is written in advance) must be the principle for action. Reviving the idea of the human challenges the normalized authority to deploy total violence upon indigenous peoples, women, workers and peasants, sex workers, queer and trans peoples; it challenges an idea of the future captured by technology, the rhetoric of catastrophism and of green capitalism. It means smashing the patriarchy, holding together the struggles of depatriarchalization and decolonization, antiracism, anti-capitalism and anti-imperialism.

Contributors

Many-Worlds Rising

15:00–15:45 / Jonas Staal / lecture

The Global South stands not only as a terrain of brutal extraction, but also as a site of resistance where the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) declared its struggle for a “world of many worlds.” The EZLN’s definition of a “Fourth World War” against neoliberalism (after WWI and II, and the Cold War), established a planetary front against a system that The Red Nation has described as fundamentally “anti-life.” From the EZLN to the Kurdish revolution in Rojava, the worldings of the South embody a non-proprietary relation to our many-worlds that have become just as important to guide popular movements in the Global North. Facing the increasing power of the trillion-dollar company and the nationalist international, how are these struggles shaping the progressive internationals, planetary commonisms and transnational terrestrial alliances we so desperately need? And what is the role of art and cultural work in helping to shape collective imaginaries to agitate and mobilize for our many-worlds to overcome?

What Does it Mean to Produce Knowledge From Below?

16:00–16:45 / Vijay Prashad / lecture

"At Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research we work with a method to amplify the voices of our movements, to elaborate theory out of the theory and praxis of our movements. The general method is derived from the Marxist tradition of building theory from struggle."

Expected Futures. The Right to Imagine.

17:00–17:45 / Françoise Vergès / lecture

The Coming South, or the coming transformation which is the very idea of the future, the right to imagine a path for a good life and reviving the idea of the human. Rien n’est écrit d’avance, (Nothing is written in advance) must be the principle for action. Reviving the idea of the human challenges the normalized authority to deploy total violence upon indigenous peoples, women, workers and peasants, sex workers, queer and trans peoples; it challenges an idea of the future captured by technology, the rhetoric of catastrophism and of green capitalism. It means smashing the patriarchy, holding together the struggles of depatriarchalization and decolonization, antiracism, anti-capitalism and anti-imperialism.

Closing panel

18:00–19:30 / Led by Marina Otero Verzier

Workshop by The Raad

20:15–21:45

The Raad, also known as the Schaduwraad ("shadow council"), is a group of residents from the Rotterdam Zuid community. They have joined forces to give Rotterdam Zuid a different voice. By putting the spotlight on ideas and initiatives that currently receive too little attention, the residents' views - regardless of their income and background - can emerge from the shadows of policy-making and project developers' agendas. In this way, the residents' decision-making power and influence are magnified.

Their ideas, desires, visions and perspectives on citizenship are indispensable. The Raad offers a platform that allows the residents to shape the city on an equal footing with other stakeholders. It believes that Rotterdam Zuid cannot be sustainably developed without the knowledge and skills of the people who underpin the area. An inclusive city can be created only by working together. The Raad is fearless, connective, critical and independent.

Due to limited capacity registration for this workshop is mandatory. Register via Eventbrite (fully booked).

Rotterdam for Real

The Coming South is part of Rotterdam for Real, a programme by Het Nieuwe Instituut that puts the use of, involvement with and control over urban space on the agenda. This programme is made possible in part by the City of Rotterdam. The Coming South is additionally supported by Het Nieuwe Instituut's International Visitor Programme.