Recent Contributions
22/04/2022    Transmitting
Open Language: roaming language to its full extent
Mohammed Alzaqzouq

In this piece by Mohammed Alzaqzouq, he takes the creative self as a point of departure for Palestinian poets and writers who are often pigeon-holed into discourses of struggle and oppression before they are addressed as creatives. He includes pieces by Mohanad Younis, Hamed Ashour, Anis Ghunayma, and Nidal al-Faq’awi to evince this point—showing his readers how language can be yielded to present oneself and one’s art in their own vocabulary.

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02/03/2022    Community-Building
The Impossibility of Community Building in Cuba
Celia González

Authors and artists interested in socially engaged art have engaged in this type of artistic practice as a mode of community building in response to the individualism and alienation encouraged by capitalist systems (Bourriaud 1998; Bishop 2006, 2012; Schneider and Wright 2006, 2013). However, in Cuba, a self-proclaimed socialist country since 1961, participation has been the device to sustain an authoritarian state with a single political party, and community initiatives have been replaced by state control. In this piece, I concentrate on artistic practices that have made participation and their emancipating failure essential to their work processes. I intend to highlight four moments and ways of embracing participation under the island’s specific conditions. With this analysis I intend to add new dimensions to the habitual opposition between collectivization vs. nihilism and emancipating symbolic gesture and the hegemony of capitalism.

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23/12/2021    Community-Building
Building of Community-in-Resistance: Weapons of Mass Creation
Gal Kirn

This contribution by Gal Kirn takes the New Alphabet School on a journey through one of the darkest times of the twentieth century: fascist occupation during World War II. It takes a closer look how at the former occupied Yugoslavia where there were no established communication channels and no material and infrastructural base for antifascist resistance, but nevertheless a genuine articulation of partisan art and politics that emerged and contributed to a collective cultural and political form of resistance that had a broad popular and democratic base. New partisan forms of cultural production and dissemination became a veritable weapon in the struggle against fascism, a pivotal tool that was needed in order to create a new political subject/entity: a “weapon of mass creation.”

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