Report from TRISE’s 2019 conference

 

On October 25-27, in the municipal cultural center of the city of Athens, the fifth TRISE conference took place under the motto “Power to destroy, power to create: building a culture of resistance – towards radical social change”.

The three-day event offered a rich programme, which explored in depth contemporary democratic and ecological theories and practices, presented by more than 30 speakers from more than 20 different cities from across Europe and beyond. The general feeling was that the presented papers held a very high intellectual level, and thus discussions with the contributors were initiated and a committee was appointed to prepare the publication of the conference proceedings into a book of one or more volumes. More information will come.

The positive feeling was reinforced by the significant attendance of the sessions – close to 200 people in total attended the conference. In the hallway leading to the conference auditorium poster presentations were put on display, and publishers from all over the world exhibited books and magazines related to social ecology and social change. A genuine agora for exchange of radical democratic ideas was opened amid the festive atmosphere.

The conference programme gave emphasis to the revolutionary experiences of the Zapatistas and Rojava, with input by people who have worked on the ground with these autonomous communities. Other creative examples of resistance to capitalism and statecraft were also explored, such as libertarian municipalist practices, participatory design, ecological and cooperative economic models and much more.

There were also book launches of new works related to social ecology. Among them was the collective volume of proceedings from the previous TRISE conference, entitled “Social Ecology and the Right to the City”, edited by Federico Venturini, Emet Degirmenci and Ines Morales. (Order your copy of this 230 page book directly from the publisher Black Rose Books. The surplus will go to TRISE.)

Gender equality was a central pillar of the conference as we place the feminisation of politics among our priorities. This was evident from the program were almost all the keynote speakers and half of the panel chairs were women. There was also a safe space policy announced, to ensure the respect of diversity. All these were part of our commitment to gender liberation and inclusivity.

Overall our 2019 conference leaves us filled with both satisfaction and hope. Satisfaction, because we saw that our work through all these years has given results. Hope, because we saw such significant interest in the need for deep exploration of the transformative potential of social ecology.

For these reasons, at the TRISE advisory council meeting which followed the three-day event, we agreed to hold our next conference in 2021. Athens is once again among the possible locations but we are open for other proposals as well. If you are interested in suggesting a different location or want to help with the organization, please contact us at info@trise.org

We would like to thank all participants, speakers and volunteers who helped make this years conference possible. We also thank the Political Studies Association for their financial support.

Yours in love and revolution,
The conference organizing team

PS: In the following days and weeks video and audio recordings from all conference panels will be uploaded to our youtube channel. Stay tuned!

 

⇒ To conference main page

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October 30, 2019

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