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MILITANT RESEARCH


“What time is it on the clock of the world?” (Grace Lee Boggs)


This is what Stuart Hall called “conjunctural analysis.” It’s the driving question of militant research


It is inspired by:

·      Precarias a la deriva (Precarious Women in the Dérive), Madrid (founded 2006)

A feminist collective who interview women in precarious employment like at call centers or care givers to show how this “invisible” labor is fundamental to neo-liberalism.


·      Colectivo Situaciones (Collective Situations) Argentina, (founded 2000)

Colectivo stress that militant research knows only where it begins, not where it ends. It works with social movements in Argentina as a way to produce analysis for and by the movement


·      The James and Grace Lee Boggs Center, Detroit (founded 1995)

The Boggs Center is at once a place of learning, teaching, research, care and mentoring. Located on the East Side of Detroit, it has pioneered “visionary organizing.”


Why militant?

because the Suffragettes used the word “militant” to describe their struggle

for votes for women.


because Dr Martin Luther King called the non-violent direct action of the

Civil Rights Movement “militant.”


because the Spanish and Latin American movements call their work

“militant research.”


It is nothing to do with soldiers or the military.


This is research:


·      With people not about them

·      For movements not about them


It begins from a position that suggests we work with these concepts:


·      Care (of others, of the self, solidarity) as a means of creating value

·      “Getting a hold” of a problem through conversation and exchange

·      The relation of what there is to see and the names we give to it

·      Intersections and intersectional analysis


It values

·      Listening

·      Learning from failure as well as success

·      Refusing to “move on, there’s nothing to see here”


It knows that “theory is detour on the way somewhere else” (Stuart Hall).


For us, that place is movement-based social change.


Resources

Colectivo Situaciones.pdf

Precarias Strike.pdf