Second Round Call for Submissions!

We created the website Enough in 2008 in response to a yearning for discussion about radical approaches to day-to-day decisions about money and resource sharing. Enough has been a space where people have shared their stories, questions, and strategies about what it means to practice a politics of wealth redistribution and anti-capitalism in their day-to-day lives while existing and surviving within capitalism. We are currently in the process of compiling additional essays to be published in book form.

We are seeking essays about how we conceive of and live a politics of interdependence, resource sharing, and wealth redistribution beyond and in resistance to capitalism.

We have received wonderful submissions from our first call last year, and we have been hard at work compiling and editing them. In the process, we’ve gained a deeper understanding of what this book is and what we are looking for. In that spirit, here is our Second Round Call for Submissions!

What does it look like to transform and undermine capitalism while we are living in it? How do we navigate, reconcile, struggle with, and confront the contradictions inherent in that position? (Please describe specific projects/strategies.)

How are we surviving and thriving in our current conditions while building alternatives and working towards an end to capitalism?

How do we confront the ways capitalism shapes our resistance practices?

How do we navigate the emotional landscape of internalized capitalism?

We are looking for critique and strategy, analysis and action, essays that both examine the big picture and describe how it plays out in the daily details of our lives.

We are looking for STRATEGIES (or dreams/fantasies/plans; they don’t have to be fully realized) combined with ANALYSIS. (i.e. not just an essay about the horrors of capitalism or the amazingness of your collective house, but an integrated combination.)  We are looking for essays that examine strategies and acknowledge pitfalls and gaps in addition to celebrating successes and victories.

This is about more than diagnosing the problem; we want to read about your smart and interesting experiments and models: food systems, housing, healthcare, parenting, childcare, organizing, labor, redistribution, retirement, aging, dying, etc. We want strategies that are relevant to and led by poor people, disabled people, people of color, elders, queers, undocumented immigrants, and multigenerational communities. How do we meet our basic needs in ways that are aimed at building collectivity instead of individual scarcity and competition? How do we give and receive care in ways that build the availability of care for everyone?

Some of the topics we would love more writing on include (but are not limited to!):

  • Aging & care needs, long-term planning, hoarding vs. preparing;
  • Sharing money in interpersonal relationships–including the tension between sharing money only in existing intimate circles versus giving it away to people you don’t know or organizations;
  • Anti-capitalist cooperative and collective workplaces–including resistant practices regarding details like payroll, retirement, childcare, benefits, scheduling, etc.;
  • Supporting international movements–including how criminalization and surveillance related to the “War on Terror” impact that support;
  • Strategies directly supporting imprisoned people and people coming out of prison with commissary/money/housing and other necessities;
  • Strikes and striking—debt strikes, prison strikes and forms of striking that depart from traditional union models and are being engaged to resist current conditions.  What is effective about these strikes, what is complicated? What historical models do they draw from and what is novel about them? How do they work, what is hard about making them work and how are people doing it? What conflicts are emerging in them?

For more info about this project, please visit http://www.enoughenough.org/about/

Please email submissions, abstracts, proposals, and inquiries to info@enoughenough.org by September 5, 2013.

-Tyrone Boucher and Dean Spade

 

Enough: The Book! (call for submissions)

Okay, people, get ready: we are making Enough into a book! We’re looking for lots of new essays, so please get in touch if you are interested in submitting something.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

Enough: The Personal Politics of Resisting Capitalism

We created the website Enough in 2008 in response to a yearning for discussion about radical approaches to day-to-day decisions about money and resource sharing. Enough has been a space where people have shared their stories, questions, and strategies about what it means to practice a politics of wealth redistribution in their day to day lives while being immersed in capitalism. We are now compiling additional essays to be published in book form.

We are seeking essays about how we conceive of and live a politics of interdependence, resource sharing, and wealth redistribution beyond and in resistance to capitalism.

Deadline: Feb 15, 2012

More details: Please visit www.enoughenough.org/about

Enough asks questions such as:

What are the various ways we are sharing resources to support community and movement-building?

What does a politics of wealth redistribution look like in the day-to-day, and what are the obstacles to developing conversations about this in political communities we belong to?

How can we build new models of collective support based in interdependence, care, and sustainability?

Topics could include (but are definitely not limited to):

  • Strategies for collective income sharing within communities, community emergency funds, sharing of resources beyond money, etc.
  • Local currencies.
  • Collective, equitable approaches to land and real estate.
  • Reparations.
  • Fundraising strategies that directly challenge capitalist power dynamics.
  • Community-based strategies for supporting mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual health.
  • How people who have inherited wealth are redistributing it equitably, and what challenges and opportunities they’ve encountered.
  • How people who work together are creating methods and cultures of supporting each other as whole people.
  • Exciting models of people dealing with money ethically in activist spaces and organizations.
  • Anti-capitalist/anti-racist/anti-imperialist analysis of choices about saving for retirement, buying real estate, taking certain jobs, supporting our communities, etc.

Questions? Email  info (at) enoughenough.org

Call for submissions: zine about nonprofits and radical social transformation

Perhaps you already know of this wonderful-sounding zine project, but I thought I would re-post this call for submissions I received:

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
Walking the Talk (tentative title) zine/book project exploring power and exploitation in nonprofit organizations, alignment of our work with our vision, and what role nonprofits have in radical social transformation.

* SUBMISSION DEADLINE EXTENDED TO MAY 1st 2011 *

…MORE AT: http://walkthetalkzine.tumblr.com/

_________________________________________________
How you gonna win when you ain’t right within? – Lauryn Hill

A clear vision means we do our work differently… keeping this vision in mind while we organize, practice, and reflect means that in our political work today we are planting the seeds of the future society for which we are striving. Some people call this prefigurative politics. The way we organize our resistance, practice leadership and build power now are the kernels of the society we are creating. -APP/LA COIL
————————————————————————————–

Even in grassroots and progressive organizations, working on radical issues, we may find a deep dissonance between the world we want to create, and what it is like to be working in the organization day-by-day. We live in a hierarchically oppressive world – and though the organizations we work in may have mission statements that aim to change this, “talking the talk” doesn’t necessarily mean “walking the walk” and social justice nonprofits can feel like a mirror of the world we’re trying to change. An organization’s power structure or ways of doing work can sometimes create unhealthy and exploitative dynamics within the organization itself and between the nonprofit and the “clients,” “members” or “community” that it works with.

What does it mean to align our vision with our process, our day-to-day work? Already, many people have been exploring the limitations and contradictions of foundation funding, and the deeper organizational accountability that comes with grassroots funding structures (described well in The Revolution Will Not Be Funded). Separately, from small nonprofit organizations all the way to multinational corporations, there’s a growing mentality that healthy workers (e.g. ones with self-care plans, workplace yoga, lunch breaks) are “better workers.” Some nonprofits take this a little deeper and are working to become more transparent, accountable and/or participatory. However, many people continue to experience oppression and exploitation within, and at the hands of, nonprofits.

The contradictions in nonprofits can wear away at us slowly, break our hearts, make us feel too idealistic
or too jaded (or both!). Some of us may be grateful that social justice work pays our bills, but if we work in nonprofits, we also struggle in them. If another world is possible, another way of working for social justice must also be possible.

Can we identify and dismantle the ways that structures of power (both social & workplace hierarchies)
negatively play out in an organization? Is it possible for nonprofits to “walk the talk?”

PROJECT GOALS
*To name and give voice to the ways that oppression (such as racism and classism) and exploitation manifest in nonprofits, particularly in ones that self-identify as “grassroots,” “movement,” “community-based” or “social justice” organizations.
*To present critical questions about nonprofit organizations for and from people who have a range of commitment to, and experience with, nonprofits.
*To open a conversation about what appropriate roles are for nonprofits, and how—or if—it is possible to really work for social justice from within them.
*To give voice to painful experiences directly linked to the structure and form of nonprofits. (These experiences frequently get tucked away under “personal conflicts” or labeled less important than the “real work.”)
*To share the difficult questions that are usually talked about discreetly—the ones that, if spoken about more publicly, might change the ways we work to change the world.

GUIDELINES
Who: Anyone can submit. We are most interested in pieces that take an anti-oppressive and intersectional approach, and we will prioritize voices of people who experience structural oppression in the world at large.

What: A zine/self-published book that will be available online and on paper.

When: SUBMISSION DEADLINE EXTENDED TO MAY 1st 2011

How: Send all submissions to walkthetalk.zine@gmail.com. Please feel free to email with questions, ideas, proposals, or heads up about something you’re working on.

Submissions: Essays, stories, art, poems, comics and interviews are welcome. Written pieces should be under 2,000 words. Get in touch if you have another idea or would like to submit a longer piece!

Please include your name and contact information with your submission. Please indicate if you want your piece to be published anonymously or with a pseudonym.

SOME POSSIBLE TOPICS & QUESTIONS TO EXPLORE AT: http://walkthetalkzine.tumblr.com/

Moving.

I had such a wonderful almost-spring day today, running errands on foot and having many of the kinds of incidental social interactions that come from living in a small neighborhood. I walked several blocks chatting with a friend who I ran into on my way to my eye doctor appointment, ran into another friend in the co-op and arranged a massage trade for next week, got hollers from two separate friends on two separate trolleys passing me as I walked, had an in-depth conversation with another friend who was cashiering during my second visit to the co-op. This is what West Philly is like.

Tonight I saw Silvia Federici, who wrote the book Caliban and the Witch, speak at a community space near my house about healing work, self-care, capitalism, and movements. Her book is about capitalism and the body, and she was talking about the ways that historically, capitalism has expanded through de-naturalizing the body, disconnecting people from each other and the natural world. That for most of human history, people have co-evolved in relationship to nature, and have built knowledge, resistances, and desires that capitalism destroys, in so many ways – by separating people, by de-collectivizing the day-to-day work of living, by individualizing the experiences (like birth, death, disease) in which we most need to feel connected to other people. That industrial capitalism broke the connection between work and seasons, used electric light to extend the workday, kept people from seeing the sky. As humans who have evolved in relationship to the seasons and stars and weather, she said, we need to see the sky.knees and sky at tinicum

This seems as good a time as any to mention that I am moving to Maine, to live in a house near the ocean with my mom and brother, one town over from my aunt and uncle’s farm. I’m moving because the pain of being so far away from my family of origin is starting to distract me from the joy of living in this tiny interconnected neighborhood with so much of my chosen family. And because what feels the most important to me right now is to build supportive community with the people who raised me. And because sharing resources with my family means I can spend less time working for money and more time doing the work that sustains me and the people and the movements that I care about. And because I know that in order to continue to do the work I want to do, I need to be able to see the sky, and forests, and the ocean. There is much to be said about this (and much to be discovered) but for now, here is a picture of my mom and her partner on a walk by the ocean. This is what I’m moving towards.

mom and margaret and ocean

Stories from readers

Alright, I know we always promise to post more and then don’t. It’s sad. That’s why you should all be like Zeph, and write to us with your stories, thoughts, critiques, responses, brilliant analyses, etc, so that we can post them on the site.

Zeph writes:

In the last few years I’ve tried to “step up” in various ways, to stop running away and hiding from my class privilege and my family history and to instead figure out ways to use that privilege to support the work that needs to happen in the world. And, as your postings amply demonstrate, it’s confusing! And contradictory! And imperfect! I have a lot to learn, I have a lot of decisions to make, and for many good and bad reasons it continues to be an awkward conversation. I figure the only way it will get less awkward is to keep trying, to keep speaking and listening, and learning the approaches that generate connection and inspiration, versus confusion, frustration, dead ends.

What am I hoping for? Well, allies—more folks to brainstorm with, folks who can share role models and cautionary tales. Most specifically, I’d like examples of projects where cash-resourceful folks collaborate with other kinds of resourceful folks to build flourishing community spaces that nourish voice and creativity at the grassroots. What makes these kinds of projects successful? Or not?

I know I can collaborate most effectively when I bring my whole self, and yet I’ve most often felt fragmented. Telling my story out loud is a way of tying all these fragments together so that I can’t leave inconvenient pieces behind me when I step through a new door. They all need to stumble together wherever I go.

Read Zeph’s story over here in the articles section.

Zeph’s story

I’m a mid-forties white genderqueer person born and raised in Montreal and raised again as an adult queerdo in the Mission District in San Francisco. I came from an owning-class Canadian WASP family. I can thank them for good teeth and education and vacation opportunities and also for legacies of silence, repression and anger. In 1987 I landed in San Francisco desperate for connection and found it among all the small-town escapees, queers from every quarter who had managed to walk-crawl-run to a city where they could find others like themselves.

I came for a visit and stayed. I dropped out of college. I got my real education. Friends hooked me up with under-the-table work doing housepainting, bookstore work, manufacturing, commercial kitchen work, you name it. The community in San Francisco was the first place I had felt relatively safe and sane. I learned about street economies and I absorbed a lot of politics and went to a lot of protests.

When I turned 25 I found out that I had inherited stocks from my paternal grandfather that at this point were worth somewhere around a quarter million dollars. They were controlled by my Dad, who worked at a firm that invested wealthy peoples’ money for them. (And yes, they all played golf together on weekends.) I ignored this information for years because I had a terrible relationship with my Dad and didn’t want to ask him for anything EVER, particularly money. But I also felt guilty and conflicted, knowing I could have access to this resource and seeing so much struggle around me while I had this huge insurance policy.

When my Dad finally retired, a family friend in the good ol’ boys’ club took over management of those stocks and I was finally able to put aside my family baggage enough to step up to the task of redistribution. I did a ton of research, found Resource Generation, went to a couple of Making Money Make Change (MMMC) conferences, “came out” (with mixed results) to friends in my life, and in the end distributed about 75% of my inheritance, mostly to community-based foundations and some directly to organizations doing work I admired. I chose foundations with strong leadership by women, queers and folks of color, hoping they would be better gatekeepers than I could be on my own. Resource Generation and MMMC were super useful as a starting point, but I didn’t stay involved because it felt limited for rich folks to talk in closed spaces only with other rich folks about social justice. It inherently excludes the wisdom of those who know economic injustice from the inside out.

I didn’t redistribute 100% of my inheritance because I figured I was on my own from there on—my family was both threatened and hurt when I gave away this money and I assumed I wouldn’t inherit again. I didn’t want to find myself in a bad situation because of medical bills or some other crisis and have my friends and family say, “well, you had money but you gave it all away–why should we help you now?”

It was a surprise to me that my Dad gave me more assets when he became sick with cancer. As a raised-poor, formerly homeless friend said to me, “Wow, when you’re born with money the world just keeps giving it you, huh?” Before Dad died, he called me on the phone and asked me to agree I wouldn’t spend it on anything that wasn’t an investment in my future security. I thought for a minute silently about how my individual security is closely wrapped up with the security of communities I depend on, and I agreed.

I want to both honor my Dad’s concern (that I’m going to die broke and alone) and also take a lesson from an ex-lover who I was dating while I was divesting my previous inheritance. At the time, she was struggling to get into nursing school, cause she was coming up on 40 and she was tired of being poor. At the time she expressed a lot of frustration that I wasn’t putting those resources to work in a way that more directly supported the community we were both part of. It’s true, why was I funneling cash to the nonprofit industrial complex when folks we both knew were struggling with basics like health care, housing and work? Her own upbringing taught her that if you have a dime, you share it with your family and friends. I told her I felt overwhelmed by the potential minefield of being a gatekeeper in my own community, and I also wanted to support movements and organizations that were working on root causes and with communities outside of the mostly-white queerpunk circles I knew personally.

I don’t have answers. I am trying to act strategically, and I am also trying to learn what some of my working class friends have told me they take for granted: the habit of sharing as a daily act, without heroics or fancy labels like “philanthropy.” It gets complicated, but I am continuing to act on that principle–that I as an individual am only going to be healthy and safe if those around me are healthy and safe.

In defiance of all that splits us

Do you know Aurora Levins Morales?Medicine Stories: History, Culture and the Politics of Integrity by Aurora Levins Morales She is a much beloved writer, historian, poet, and activist. I first read her writing in This Bridge Called My Back (now shockingly out of print), and lately I’ve been reading her blog, where she writes about disability and chronic illness, imperialism, poetry, capitalism – read this post about her experience returning to the U.S. after some months in Cuba receiving medical treatment:

Coming back to capitalism after three months out from under is like walking into a horror movie. In this country, my neighbor can spray pesticides in his back yard and even if it gives me seizures, the right to private property overrules my right to health, and the worst thing is that it seems self-evident to him that it should be so.

When I recently read an essay on facebook co-authored by Aurora and Susan Raffo, I asked if I could re-post it here. This is a piece about interdependence, about building alternatives to this U.S. paradigm of individualist violence so that Aurora, and all of us, can survive.

I am building a virtual village around myself, because it will keep me alive and because it will improve all of our chances.  I have a lot to give, but it’s not sustainable to give it without more nourishing relationships…I want a band of fellow travelers, an extended family, people I can call on.  I won’t belong to the world where much loved artists die alone in poverty.  I insist on a kinship web of people who will feed each other when there’s not enough food, come to each other’s rescue, and offer each other shelter, in defiance of all that splits us.
I believe that the stronger we can build these webs of kinship and care, the better able they will be to support all of us.
Please read the entire piece below.

Grassroots fundraising and the joys of worker co-ops

I left my heart in Muir Woods (photo by Posadas)

Hello dear Enough readers! So many things to write about, so little time in life, you know what I mean? As I was lying in bed last night making lists in my head of all the things I want to write for Enough, I realized I should say something about these two amazing conferences I was at last month during a typically whirlwindy (though still filled with beautiful nature trips) Bay Area visit.

One was the Money for Our Movements conference (f.k.a. Raising Change, which I wrote about in 2008). Grassroots fundraising is still radical, y’all. I’m not only talking about any old individual-donor-solicitation/direct-mail-campaign/donor-cultivation grassroots fundraising, but transformative, anticapitalist, community-rooted, reconceptualization and redistribution of resources. Highlights of that conference for me included spending time with my friend Susan Raffo (Twin Cities residents, you should really get in touch with her for bodywork, facilitation, and sheer brilliance), who co-presented a workshop with David Nicholson and Kate Eubank featuring a social justice resource sharing model they developed (check out the description of the workshop called Resource (R)evolution on Susan’s website). It’s awesome and I think it’s going to change everything. Hopefully more on that to come (maybe I can get Susan to write something about their work for us to share on Enough…). Susan edited the book that sparked some of my early self-reflective class analysis, and continues to write things that inspire me and influence my thinking all the time, like this essay: Radical acts of queer love: some lessons from September 11th.

Another highlight was seeing the incomparable Cara Page, who is doing incredible reproductive and healing justice work in the South and is a visionary genius of the highest order: witness. She also gave a keynote at the conference (along with Ai-jen Poo, a very smart and awesome organizer with Domestic Workers United – check out their blog). Cara recently wrote this piece reflecting on the healing justice work that changed my life at the USSF, which I really think you should read.

Also, Tiny and I gave a workshop about engaging major donors in collective liberation, which was deep and involved a story circle about sharing resources from a place of community and love. I left feeling extra reflective about how important it is to be holistic in the work we do if we aim to really change or transform anything. The power dynamics in fundraising are so connected to the trauma people experience under capitalism and white supremacy, and I appreciated the space to acknowledge that fundraising can be really triggering for those reasons. Conversation about grassroots fundraising is often so technical and skills-based, which is important but doesn’t always leave room for vision and connecting to the real reasons we’re doing the work we do. I was also grateful for Susan’s and other workshops at the conference (like an awesome one about challenging white supremacy in fundraising) for creating that space.

In the spirit of doing way too much in one week, I also attended the US Federation of Worker Co-ops conference with three of my coworkers. Have I mentioned that I work in a co-op? The theme of the conference was “The Work We Do is the Solution,” and I’m here to tell you that worker co-ops really are a solution, people. You know how we talk about needing to not just resist oppressive structures and institutions but also build new ones based in justice? It’s like that. I had an unfounded fear that this conference would be filled only with manly, alienating bicycle mechanics, but instead there were domestic worker collectives, recycling collectives, taxi driver collectives, restaurant and grocery and facilitation collectives, and so many others, all with different approaches to collectivity and worker ownership.

On that note, I really recommend the book Horizontalism for more co-op inspiration – it uses personal testimonies to describe the popular uprising in Argentina in 2001, when the people overthrew the national government (several times in a row) and built/took over hundreds of autonomous, co-operative institutions to support their lives, from factories to schools to hospitals to barbershops to grocery stores. It goes well with the movie The Take. I read Horizontalism with my study group last year during a minor slump in my co-op enthusiasm and felt vigorously re-inspired.  I sometimes get bogged down in the challenges of working collectively (especially in a consensus-based organization, which my co-op is), but these kinds of texts and spaces remind me how intertwined the worker co-op movement is with Left movements for liberation.

p.s. Do I use too many embedded links? There’s just so much I want you to know about. I store it up.

support for people impacted by disaster in Pakistan

From Indu, a message about how to donate and what is going on:

**please forward widely**

14 million people have now been affected by the flooding in Pakistan. Recent reports state that the carnage is worse than the 2004 Tsunami and the earthquake in Haiti.

The situation is getting worse by the hour as monsoon rains continue and water is washing down from the Himalaya Mountains. The international response to the flood is underwhelming, the UN has launched an appeal for $459m, to date, five countries – Britain, the US, Australia, Italy and Kuwait – have committed or pledged more than $5m in new funding. Currently, the amount of international aid that is committed does not scratch the surface of the need on the ground. Continue reading