2020 BAABF/ROAR Workshop Schedule

2020 BAABF/ROAR Workshop Schedule

*This schedule is subject to change and will be updated closer to the event*

ROOM A: Temescal Arts Center, 511 48th Street

10-1130: Anti-Fascism in the 1980s

12-130: Between Earth and Empire: From the Necrocene to the Beloved Community

2-330: Rojava: A Historical Overview of the Kurdish Liberation Struggle

4-530 or 6: Critical Perspectives for Anarchist Internationalists: Fascist Drift and Bourgeois Coldness

ROOM B: East Bay Community Center, 507 55th Street

10-1130: “We Want a Homeland”: Popular Sovereignty and Protests in Iraq and Iran

12-1: Queer Wandering in the Anti-Nazi Underworld

130-3: Horizontalism From Indigenous Movements to LA Tenants Union

330-4: Narcan Training

430-6: Reportback from Zapatista’s Second International Gathering of Women Who Struggle

ROOM C: East Bay Community Center, 507 55th Street

10-11: Grounding Skills for Activists, Revolutionaries, and Anyone Else

1130-1: Advertising Shits in Your Head: Strategies for Resistance

130-230: Occult Antifasism

3-4: Anarchist World Building Through Fiction

430-6: Jail Strikes: Beyond Fetishizing “Rebels”



ROOM A (Temescal Arts Center)

10-11:30: Anti-Fascism in the 1980s

Session Format : Panel with short film clips

Session Presenters : James Tracy, Lisa Roth, Steven Pitts

Session Description : Expanding on the themes in “No Fascist USA! The John Brown Anti-Klan Committee in the Reagan Years (CIty Lights January 2020) this panel will explore the fights against the far right in the 1980s. This decade holds many lessons for today’s anti-fascist fighters including approaches to direct action and engaging with others outside of the radical milieu.

12-1:30: Between Earth and Empire: From the Necrocene to the Beloved Community

Session Format : Panel / author talk

Session Presenters : John P. Clark is a philosopher, activist, and educator.

He lives and works in New Orleans, where his family has been for twelve generations. He is director of La Terre Institute for Community and Ecology. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books and edits the cyberjournal Psychic Swamp: The Surregional Review.

Session Description : We are now in the midst of an epoch of death and mass extinction, a necrocene. Conventional approaches are failing. Social and ecological regeneration must be rooted in communities of liberation and solidarity. This new book by celebrated philosopher and educator John P. Clark explores significant recent progress in this direction, including the Zapatistas, Rojava movement, indigenous movements, Democratic Autonomy Movement in Rojava, ongoing struggles in Papua New Guinea, and many more. This talk will speak to new comers to anarchism and those already involved in radical activism. It certainly addresses broad, philosophical questions about our work as well as proposes radical strategies to connect anarchism and radical activism to current movements such as indigenous liberation and environmental destruction. This is a call to arms for the rebirth of a libertarian and communitarian social imaginary, and the flourishing of a free cooperative community globally. Join us!

2-3:30: Rojava: a Historical Overview of the Kurdish Liberation Struggle

Session Format : panel & presentation

Session Presenters : Ismail Akar & Andrej Grubacic

Session Description : The Democratic Federation of North-East Syria (DFNES), also known as Rojava, emerged in 2012 amidst the Syrian civil war. Rojava has captured the fascination of leftists around the world for the radical economic, ecological, feminist, democratic, and pluralistic model it advocates and carries out. This talk will outline the history of the Kurdish liberation struggle, with a focus on the PKK and the transitions in ideological frameworks that laid the groundwork for the Rojava Revolution. This talk focuses on Rojava as a radical societal model that actively challenges fascism, capitalism, sectarianism, and sexism.

4-6: Critical Perspectives on Challenges for the Left: Fascist Drift and Bourgeois Coldness

Session Format : Workshop

Session Presenters : Javier Sethness and Shon Meckfessel

Session Description : We live in difficult times. Murderous white supremacy, Islamophobia, and anti-Semitism have returned in ways that are reminiscent of the worst periods of the twentieth century. Illustrating capitalist destructiveness, the global climate system is vastly overheated and arguably breaking down. Not only this, but parts of the left appear to be in disarray, with prominent “anti-imperialists” defending authoritarian and fascist regimes at home and abroad, both at the present juncture and through historical disinformation. At this critical time, increasingly more self-styled leftists are allowing themselves to fall into the trap of the “fascist drift,” denying the place of human autonomy, freedom, and struggle, in parallel to the denial of the material reality of ongoing atrocities and human suffering—nowhere moreso than in Syria. By so doing, they are merely restating capitalist imperatives and expressing bourgeois coldness. In reflecting on these questions, we will present a critical, cosmopolitan-internationalist perspective, integrating a social-psychological framework inspired by Erich Fromm.


10-11:30: “We Want A Homeland”: Popular Sovereignty and Protests in Iraq and Iran

Session Format : presentation

Session Presenters : Kerem Uşşaklı & TBD

Session Description : This  presentation will analyze^the socioeconomic dynamics of protests in Iraq that began in October 1, 2019, and the protests in Iran that began in November of the same year. Starting with the slogan, “We Want a Homeland,” the leaderless protests that spread to Baghdad and numerous major cities in Iraq, have become the most important revolutionary moment in post-°©‐American occupation era. A month later, protesters in Iran and Iranian Kurdistan began widespread protests in reaction to the economic crisis, and Iran’s costly involvement in proxy wars in the region. The talk will examine: i) the demands of the Iraqi and Iranian protesters and activists, and how they seek to challenge the sectarian and neoliberal-°©‐extractive economic order in the region; ii) the spatial and discursive strategies used by protesters, and how protesters are re-°©‐claiming spaces co-°©‐opted by private interests, religious and militia leaders; iii) the reactions and contributions towards the protests from minority groups, such as Kurds, in both countries. The presentation seeks to move discussions around these countries away from the geopolitical tug-°©‐of-°©‐war, by focusing on activism and social movements that seeks to provide alternative futures to repressive states and imperial regimes in the region.

12-1: Queer Wandering in the Anti-Nazi Underworld

Session Format: presentation

Session Presenters: An editor of the journal Baedan

Session Description: An inquiry into the “secret Germany”, the underworld of gay anarchism prior to the rise of the third reich, and the participation of queer people in the armed resistance to the Nazis. An invocation of these ancestors of path, and a consideration of their lessons for the present.

1:30-3: Horizontalism from Indigenous Movements to LA

Tenants Union

Session Format : Workshop

Session Presenters : Dr. Lilia Monzo and Kris Baumgartner. Lilia has recently published a book called A Revolutionary Subject: Pedagogy of Women of Color and Indigeneity exploring this and related topics. Kris been an organizer with the LA Tenants Union for 3 years and ally in the various local community movements where horizontalism has been both a spontaneous experience and debated topic. Both are also members of the International Marxist-Humanist Organization.

Session Description : What are the principles of horizontalism? How does a mass movement operate horizontally? Horizontalism is increasingly regarded as a legitimate way to organize movements, but it wasn’t always that way. In this session we will look at the often forgotten historical roots of horizontalism in women of color and indigenous movements. We will then connect that to contemporary horizontalist movements such as the LA Tenants Union where the ideas continue to develop in an American context to answer these questions and more.

3:30-4: Narcan Training/Harm Reduction

Session Format: Training and material distribution

Session Presenters: Members of Drug Overdose Prevention and Education (D.O.P.E.) Project, possibly others TBD

4:30-6: Report Back From Zapatista’s Second International Gathering of Women Who Struggle

Session Format : discussion and presentation of audio/video recordings taken at the encuentro

Session Presenters : Presenters traveled to Chiapas for the encuentro together; Session Description : We are a group of women and gender non-conforming creatives who want to hold a report back and discussion about the convergence that took place in Chiapas in December 2019. In their own words, Zapatsita women hosted this encuentro with this intention: “Thus we are calling for a Second International Encounter of Women Who Struggle, focused on one theme only: violence against women. We want to address this theme in two parts: to denounce the violence and to discuss what we are going to do to stop the massacre. So we invite you sister, compañera, to come meet with us so that we may together express our rage and state clearly what is happening to us all over the world.” (more background info here.) We want to share our personal/political experience on this sacred land, as well as share audio and video that was taken. Through either a moderated panel or discussion, we will get into the way this autonomous space was facilitated and shared, the difficulties and moments of triumph, takeaways, and ideas about moving forward in solidarity.


10-11: Grounding Skills for Activists, Revolutionaries, and Anyone Else

Session Format : Workshop that includes skillshare

Session Presenters : Kangs Trevens and KC Van Der Zee

Session Description : We would like to hold an interactive workshop, where we share a bit of background on trauma, the nervous system and brain activation. Then we will teach people various grounding skills and support them to try them out. We would like to normalize the need for self-care for anyone and everyone, especially activists, and contribute to more widespread healing and better living.

11:30-1: Advertising Shits in Your Head: Strategies for Resistance

Session Format: Film screening and workshop

Session Presenters: Matt Bonner and Vyvian Raoul

Session Description: Co-authors of Advertising Shits in Your Head – Matt Bonner and Vyvian Raoul – discuss subvertising – the subversion of advertising. Advertising Shits in Your Head is part theory, part DIY-manual for accessing and altering advertising spaces; this event will aim to equip attendees with the knowledge they need to carry out their own subvertising campaigns in the Bay Area

1:30-2:30: Occult Antifascism

Session Presenters : Areïon

Session Description : Violence against violence, spiritual warfare against spiritual warfare. The struggle on all levels between the ancestral lineage of Liberation and the undead spirit of the Fasces. An exorcism of the curse of liberalism within antifascism, a hex against all crypto-fascists, an offering to Anarchy.

3-4: Anarchist World-Building Through Fiction

Session Format : writing workshop

Session Presenters : Madi Giovina

Session Description: What does an anarchist future look like? We need to see the future to be the future. In this workshop, we will collaboratively envision the anarchist world we would like to see in our futures. Example questions we’ll explore are: What does this world look like? Feel like? What are the people and communities like? Without authority, are there rules? Are these rules spoken or unspoken? Who enforces them? What does justice look like? We’ll go deeper into the society and its inner workings, and discuss how the natural world plays a part in this world. After we have collectively built this world, we will go off and do solo quick writes, designing characters, conflicts, and anything they need to write their own short story. This workshop is adapted from Walidah Imarisha’s worksheet: “Collective Visionary Fiction Writing Worksheet” from the book Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction Stories from Social Justice Movements 4:30-6: Jail Strikes; Beyond Fetishizing “Rebels”

Session Format : presentation, QnA

Session Presenters : (tentative) 2 IWOC solidarity workers Riley, Brooke, and Santa Rita hungerstrikers represented in testimony/possibly recordings

Session Description : A breakdown of recent resistance and response at the local county jail, situated in the broader context of inside strikes and outside response as an abolitionist tactic. The recent eruption of hungerstrikes and work stoppages at Santa Rita Jail illuminates not only the horrible conditions inside all jails and the difficulties of organizing resistance within, but also casts a stark light on the present state of outside movements and all the different power relations between institutions, non-profits, lawyers, media, and radical solidarity groups. We will lay out a candid power map of Alameda County, highlight abolitionist opportunities and opponents to those, and relay organizing priorities from the inside moving forward. This presentation is intended to offer an honest analysis on how to build outside support grounded in supporting inside struggle, voices, and tactics.

The Bay Area Anarchist Book Fair is an annual event for people interested and engaged in radical work to connect and learn through book and information tables, workshops, panel discussions, skillshares, films and more! We create an inclusive space to introduce new folks to anarchism, foster productive dialogue between various political traditions and anarchists from different milieus, and create an opportunity to dissect our movements’ strengths, weaknesses, strategies, and tactics.