Ricardo Levins Morales Reportback on the U.S. Social Forum
The time I spent in Detroit, culminating in the 5-day US Social Forum, were the most affirming of my life in terms of the value of the work I have chosen to devote my life to! I was rewarded with so many testimonials about how my work has been important in peoples struggles, communities, schools, discussions and even romances all across the map. I even learned that my Woody Guthrie poster (the first poster I made) is painted onto the wall of an eating establishment in Dayton Ohio (anyone able to take a picture for me?).
By delightful chance my table space backed against that of Minnesota neighbors the Indigenous Environmental Network. The youngest member of their delegation, Zhaabi, translated my name into Elvish for me. I might never have learned it. (His mom was a Northland Poster Collectivist back in the 80s and early 90s.)
Across the isle was the booth of Just Seeds, a national collective of talented and creative radical poster makers and artists, including some I've featured in past newsletters.
The group Arts & Democracy sponsored a series of workshops on art and movement building. The one I led was filled by a hundred lively activist who came up with some great creative organizing strategies to take home.
The idea of the forum is to further discussion and clarity on how to make real change happen. My piece of that discussion can be found in the writings section of on my website or on ZNet.
It's called Float Like a Butterfly, Sting like a Bee: A political ecology of change. It's about how turning the tide is a more practical strategy than swimming faster. I always appreciate feedback from folks who read it.
Image: Another World IS Possible by Ricardo Levins Morales RLMarts