Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Conflux Festival 2008

Conflux Festival 2008 Call for Proposals -- please distribute widely!

Conflux is the annual art and technology festival for the creative exploration of urban public space.

Save the dates: the 2008 festival takes place September 11 - 14 throughout New York City.

To submit a proposal to participate in the festival: http://confluxfestival.org/conflux2008/submissions/

The deadline for submissions is May 31, 2008.

We look forward to seeing you in September!

- Team Conflux

Friday, May 2, 2008

Key Signposts to the Neoliberal University Rat Race

Key Signposts to the Neoliberal University Rat Race

Over the past 25+ years, higher education has been transformed by the neoliberal policies aiming to shrink and privatize the state, and run government services like businesses. How does neoliberalism turn education into a rat race?

-Competition for scarce education funding has led to increased workloads for faculty and students, but this work speed-up leaves less time to study and think.
-Fewer students can afford college, leading to a re-segregation of higher ed.

-Corporatized measures of university accountability judge quality by numbers of publications and students per faculty, fueling publication inflation and evaluation by bubble forms.

-Emphasizing efficiency in midst of scarcity fuels a two-tier academic labor force featuring a shrinking percentage of tenure-track posts, while relying upon temporary faculty (inc. grad. students) for mass teaching.
-The increasing percentage of temporary faculty has led to cookie cutter content in part because such faculty members have few incentives to create a rigorous or politically challenging classroom.

-Emphasis on quantity and efficiency reinforces existing lines of research, with precious little time or incentive for creative, path-breaking work.
-Publishing has become more an instrument of technocratic university evaluations, and less a matter of peer dialogue and criticism. Are we accountable to peers or to numbers, and who enforces this?

-Scarce funding stifles free intellectual engagement by reinforcing established lines of inquiry.
-Who are our peers? The resegregation of the university further limits who is able to participate in academic conversation within the classroom, and reinforces exclusionary and unaccountable publications.
-Students missing from the university for lack of funding do not have academic freedom.

Monday, April 14, 2008

AGG 2008 - Demilitarizing War and Peace, Boston, April 15th-19th

"Demilitarizing War and Peace"

Boston, April 15-19, 2008

activist geographers grouping

Our memories are militarized when we remember this year as the fifth anniversary of the Iraq War. Yet we often forget that the peace that preceded this war is a history of sanctions and imperialism, and that militarization continues even in places where 'peace has broken out.' These memories and forgettings profoundly shape how we can imagine common peaceful futures.

Here in
Boston – which prepares for Patriot's Day celebrations – we are interested in renewing a conversation about collective practices that construct, in Said's words, "fields of coexistence rather than fields of battle." Since 2006, agg has been creating spaces for building a community-in-formation that engages questions of militarism, daily life, and daily death. How might collective intellectual labor work to demilitarize war and peace (and ourselves in the process)? What can activist-academics do to create possibilities for peaceful commons?

agg lunch/meeting WEDNESDAY 4/16
The OtherSide Cafe 407 Newbury Street,
Boston, MA 02115
Take the subway from Copley Sq to Hynes Convention
Center/ICA station or walk 0.5 miles (between E Charlesgate &
Massachusetts Ave) Come share/shape the future of the agg!

What's Just? Mapping the State of
Geographies of Justice
8:00-9:40am PAPER SESSION 4163
Come network the connections in our work. Local activists
also invited. Central Library,
700 Boylston Street, Copley
. 3 minute walk: North on Ring Rd, Rt on Boylston

What's Activist? The next generation talks praxis
2:30-4:10pm Panel session 4404

agg party! FRIDAY 4/18 9pm Peoples Republik, Central Square, 876-878
Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139
Take the Red Line to Central Square Station, then walk 0.3
miles along Massachusetts Ave

Monday, April 16, 2007

AGG 2007 - Dialectics of Life and Death, San Francisco, April 17-21

Tuesday April 17
Geography/Bees: A conversation on methodologies, representations, and popular education with the Beehive Design Collective 4-5:40PM: Imperial Ballroom A

Wednesday April 18
Negotiating the Political Landscape of Activist Research I 1-2:40PM: Union Square 6
Negotiating the Political Landscape of Activist Research II 3-4:40PM: Union Square 6
James Blaut Award and Memorial Lecture by Ruthie Gilmore 7-8PM:Yosemite A

Thursday April 19
Mesoamerica Resiste: A new graphics campaign by the Beehive Design Collective 10-11:40AM: Mendocino 1, Hotel Nikko 2nd Floor
Gold & Greed of North American Mining vs. The Development, Human Rights and Environmental Needs of Central American Peoples 12:30-1:30PM: Global Exchange, 2017 Mission St, 2nd floor in the Mission
Re-working the world we know: contemporary art and geographical activism
3-4:40PM: Lombard Room

Friday April 20
Political Geographies of Health I: Gender, Sexuality and the Production of Health Inequalities 8-9:40AM: Continental Ballroom 9
Political Geographies of Health II: Power, Place, and the Production of Health Inequalities 10-11:40AM: Continental Ballroom 9
Political Geographies of Health III: The State and Politics of Bodily Knowledge
12-1:40PM: Continental Ballroom 9

AGG/SCGSG PARTY 7PM to ???: Northstar Cafe, 1560 Powell, between Green & Vallejo in North Beach
"Every Night Is Ladies Night: Lesbian Bar Culture Since the '60s" opening 7-9pm: The Lexington Club, 3464 19th St. near Valencia in the Mission

Saturday April 21
‘Community Mural, Geographic Storytelling’ 8:20AM: Yosemite B
Geographies of Militarism I 2-3:40PM: Union Square 16
Geographic Visions for Alternative Futures I 2-3:40PM: Taylor B
Geographies of Militarism II 4-5:40PM: Union Square 16
Geographic Visions for Alternative Futures II 4-5:40PM: Taylor B
‘Gathering Alternatives’ informal dinner & drinks 7pm dinner @ La Rondalla, 901 Valencia St. in the Mission (16th or 24th St BART). Drinks to follow dinner nearby @ 500 Club, 500 Guerrero & 17th St.

AGG is a working group that collaborates our independent works, illuminating the life and death connections between militarism, racism, sexism, capitalism, the state, and politics. We aim to create activist research that honors struggles for survival and dignity and helps create a better world. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/activistgeographers/

Monday, March 6, 2006

AAG 2006 - Community in Formation, Chicago, March 7th-11th

Simulation of Pearl Harbor bombing, Edwards Air Force Base. Wendy Cheng, 2005.

Last year, a group of us were looking for a way to work on a project together. We came up with a mini-conference around the theme ‘living beyond the warfare-welfare complex’, a phrase that encompassed all of our individual projects and spoke to some of our political commitments and desires. The mini-conference format that we chose for the project’s first phase was great for providing us a way to meet with each other and collaborate at the conference, generating a good deal of excitement and energy.

This year we have made the project less centralized and more democratic. The AGG is a project, not a membership organization, and is independent from the AAG. We invite anyone who shares the overarching political goals and desire to experiment with forms of knowledge creation and representation to join the AGG listserv and propose projects that you would like to work on or are already planning. These can range from the formal AAG sessions in the future (which bring us together each year after all), to events or (de)tours, or confabs, etc., anything you’re up to.

AGG is a working group that collaborates our independent works, illuminating the life and death connections between militarism, racism, sexism, capitalism, the state, and politics. We aim to create activist research that honors struggles for survival and dignity and helps create a better world. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/activistgeographers/

Activist Geographers Grouping, Season Two:
Community in Formation– Chicago
Sessions, Events, Parties, and Meetings

(all events are located at the Palmer Hotel unless otherwise noted)

Wednesday March 8
The Art of Doing Geography: Reflections on a Community Mural Project as Participatory Geographic Learning 2pm, Clark 1

Thursday March 9
Racial Discourse, Spatial Practices, and the Materiality of Race
10am, Monroe Ballroom

AGG planning meeting, 6:30-7:30pm, Exchequer, 226 S. Wabash Ave.
(Meeting convening promptly so folks can go to the GPOW reception)
The agenda is to meet each other, talk about our ideas for the group, and begin planning for the San Francisco AAG and other AAG projects.

Friday March 10
Activism and Gentrification Research: A Roundtable Discussion
Private Dining Room 9
Roundtable discussion 1, 8am
Roundtable discussion 2, 10am

The Performative and the Political, Salon 10
Session 1: noon
Session 2: 2pm

Inaugural James Blaut Award & Memorial Lecture, presented to Ruthie Gilmore
7:45pm-9pm, Salon 10
***AGG/SCGSG Party*** 9pm-??, Billy Goat Tavern, 430 N. Lower Michigan Ave. Take the Red line north to Grand station. Cash only, but cheap.

Saturday March 11
Critical Explorations of Militarism, Salon 1
I: Militarism and the Construction of Natures, 8am
II: Militarized Environments, 10am
III: Feminist Geopolitics & Everyday Life 1, 2pm
IV: Feminist Geopolitics & Everyday Life 2, 4pm

Critical Geographies of Education: Taking Back (Higher) Education:
A Roundtable Discussion & Strategy Session, 10am, Salon 11

3 Ds: Drinks/Dinner/Dancing
following the Critical Explorations of Militarism series, meet at Salon 1 at 5:45 for all or part of evening’s plans

Sunday, April 3, 2005

AGG 2005 - Living Beyond the Warfare-Welfare Nexus, Denver, April 4th-9th

Pic: Eryn Roston

***This year at AAG, YOU ARE INVITED***
to an exciting new mini-conference series Activist Geographers Grouping presents "Living Beyond the Warfare-Welfare Nexus"

Thirty-eight years ago this week, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his famous ‘A Time to Break the Silence’ speech in which he explained how the road from Montgomery had led him to speak out against the Vietnam War. Making clear the connections between the civil rights movement and anti-war movement that so many denounced him for making, King explained that he saw a continuity between the black freedom struggle in the States and liberation struggles abroad. He also saw that the domestic War on Poverty had been eviscerated by military spending and that the poor paid the additional price of what we now call the poverty draft, “So I was increasingly compelled to see the war as an enemy of the poor and to attack it as such.” Finally, as the struggle of the black freedom movement expanded to the Northern cities, “I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today: my own government. For the sake of those boys, for the sake of this government, for the sake of the hundreds of thousands trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent.”

King was one important leader who talked through the connections and contradictions between warfare and welfare. Many academics know of James O’Connor’s work that detailed a strategy for delinking the welfare state from the warfare state, but over at least the past 40 years, the contradiction between warfare and welfare has become central to feminist, anti-racist, anti-prison, anti-war and occupation, and anti-neoliberal globalization movements all of whose struggles for living run up against military budgets, corporations that profit from destruction and reconstruction, polluted lands and waters, bombs and bullets.

The AGG has taken the opportunity of this conference to organize this series of interrelated sessions. Bringing our individual work, which extends through a series of scales and places in the world, into this extended conversation will enable us to explore the many interrelated empirical, theoretical and political issues, which converge around the project of Living Beyond the Warfare-Welfare Nexus. We see this series as a working group that collaborates our independent works, illuminating the life and death connections between militarism, racism, sexism, [the economy or capitalism], the state, and politics. In so doing, we aim to create activist research that honors struggles for survival and dignity and helps create a better world.

Schedule of Sessions
All sessions are in the Gold Room unless otherwise noted.

Living Beyond I: Geographies of Hope and Social Change, Tues 4-5:40, *Tower Court B*
Living Beyond II: A ‘Politics of Place’: Exploring settler-state landscapes for evidence of self-determination, Wed 8-9:40
Living Beyond III: The Experimental Geographers I, Wed 10-11:40
Living Beyond IV: The Experimental Geographer II, Wed 1-2:40
Living Beyond V: Militarism, Human Health and Environmental Destruction, Wed 3-4:40
Living Beyond VI: Geographies of Popular Conservatism / Geographies of the Right, Th 8-9:40
Living Beyond VII: Geography in Popular Education and Popular Education in Geography, Th 10-11:40
Living Beyond VIII: A Presentation and Discussion on the Beehive Design Collective and its Graphics Campaigns, Th 1-2:40
Living Beyond IX: Living Beyond the Warfare-Welfare Nexus: Concluding Discussion Session, Th 3-4:40

The Economic Turn in Cultural Geography, Wed 1-2:40, *Governor’s Square 10*
Governing Citizens, Territory, War, Th 8-9:40, *Spruce Room*
Governing Citizens, Territory, War (II), Th 10-11:40, *Spruce Room*

Thursday 8pm, Wazee Supper Club in LoDo
15th & Wazee (303-623-9518)

Jack Kerouac hung out here and you will want to join us for pizza, soda and beer, too. The party is co-hosted by the Socialist and Critical Geography Specialty Group (SCGSG), and all are invited.

Directions: From the Adam’s Mark, you can walk/cab up 15th to Wazee, ~1.1 miles or 13 blocks. From the Executive Tower, walk up Curtis to 15th, turn left on 15th and amble to Wazee, ~ 7 blocks. There is also a free shuttle that runs down 16th Street from the conference to LoDo.