"Your good words make my ears tingle," says Elaine Durocher as she overhears Glen Coulthard at a diner in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, unceded xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaʔ (Tsleil-Waututh) territories.
In December I had the opportunity to sit down with Coulthard, and in our discussion, he is describing how the granting of certain rights by the state works perfectly within colonialism by effectively masking the ongoing dispossession of Indigenous peoples. Durocher, a Metis grandmother and activist who I know within the Downtown Eastside community, joins our conversation and is nodding along.
Debt, like many things in our capitalist system, is something that people generally believe is an individual problem. But in our current economic state, debt just another part integrated into a system designed to fail. It is a systemic issue that activists need to collectively resist and reject. The Debt Resisters' Operational Mannual was created by the writers, activists and academics at Strike Debt. It aims to give folks plain language tools to resist debt and offers up creative alternatives.
This autumn, The Theatre for Living (Headlines Theatre) presents Corporations in our Heads, an audience-led play that is completely absent of scripts or designated actors. Its main mission: to provide insight into the various relationships we have with corporate culture and control in our daily lives.
Though impossible to clearly articulate, as the content is improvisational and ranges night to night, Artistic and Managing Director David Diamond explains "theatre is a language that belongs to everyone."
Related rabble.ca story:
Disassembly Required: A Field Guide to Actually Existing Capitalism
Geoff Mann is the author of Disassembly Required: A Field Guide to Actually Existing Capitalism, which acts as a primer on economics 101 and speaks to those people who are not comfortable with the status quo, confused about the state of things and trying to imagine a different system.
Aaron Leonard recently corresponded with Professor Mann via email to examine the book and dig deeper into some of the popular explanations it offers. This is an edited version of their original conversation.
Who are you hoping to reach with this book?
There is a significant and to my mind problematic limitation that is increasingly being placed on Indigenous efforts to defend our rights and our lands. This constraint involves the type of tactics that are being represented as morally legitimate in our efforts to defend our land and rights as Indigenous peoples on the one hand, and those which are viewed at as morally illegitimate because of their disruptive and extra-legal character on the other.
"I don't get my authority from this preexisting paradigm which is quite narrow and only serves a few people. I look elsewhere for alternatives that might be of service to humanity."
In an interview with BBC Newsnight's Jeremy Paxman, comedian Russell Brand lays into a discussion about political apathy, democratic inequality and capitalist institutions, bringing a mainstream light to the messages of marginalized people.