January 16, 2020•660 words
NOTES & reflections stemming from the reading of Alex Martinis Roe's book To Become Two. Propositions for Feminist Collective Practice.
From SECTION 2 “Our Future Network”
“What kinds of activities would create feminist alliances and collaborations among, for instance, cultural workers, medical professionals, lawyers, environmentalists, and social policymakers?”
AMR “brought together a group of 10 female cultural and academic practitioners (…)” for a “workshop in my studio in a setting designed with Fotini Lazaridou-Hatzigoga”.
“The central question was: how could the transdisciplinarity and othe methodologies that have come out of the digestion of sexual difference feminism (together with post-structuralism more broadly) in Sydney & Utrecht – which characterize the work of, (…) - affect the political practices we were experimenting with from France and Italy? For ex, I think it is crucial to continue to practice and reinvent what Libreria delle donne di Milano call “the practice of relations”, i.e. working on relationships as a political practice where the relationship starts from and values each other's difference. This practice could be a tool to form alliances (...)”
158 “task of storytelling” “translation” “performing a script” “meeting in a large house in the countryside near Berlin. (…) four days (…) “propositions for collective feminist practice”
Federica Bueti who is reasearching Carla Lonzi & Hélène Cixous
Asa Elzen wo creates artistic methods for feminist historiography
Fotini Lazaridou-Hatzigoga who designs facilitates and researches intersections bet social and physical spaces. Sara Paiola working on relationship between motherhood and the law
Svenja Engels focus on feminist-queer pedagogy
Lindsay Grace Weber on feminist queer and materialist approaches to history and philosophy
“as a handbook of political tools”.
Proposition #1 Archiving Relations developed with Lindsay Grace Weber
“What goes into the archive determines what resources historians work with”... “crucial site for intervention and initiative”
“Feminist archives, in my experience, don't contain enough information about the social structures of their organizations, probably because these structures are made up of countless spontaneous daily interactions.”
“consists mainly of formal publications, and not of more intimate accounts of their primary practice, the practice of relations. Their publications theorize that practice and give access to it through some storytelling (..)”
“Lindsay introduced me to the term of “self-archiving”” so as to “create histories of the crucial, but often overlooked importance of relationships in collective politics.” “Through continuous collection of these traces, and a regular practice of selecting from them and making them accessible, it is possible to create a living archive of feminist political practice – a very different process from most forms of history making.”
A Republic of Letters developed with Asa Elzen
“The salon was the central institution in which the philosophical discourse of the Republic of Letters was developed, where the debates of the “philosophes” were adjudicated by the figure of the salonnière, the host, who set the rules of conversation and the order and manner of contributions. These grand living rooms, established by women,” “The conversations begun in the salon would then be extended through the exchange of handwritten letters, which could travel great distances and engage new voices in the debates as ideas within them circulated. These letter exchanges became a form of publishing and the salonnière would be the one to distribute copies of significant letters to her network.”
“This Republic of Letters, with the salon and salonnière at the cetre, gave rise to radical ideas that could have restructured society entirely – including dramatic changes to relations between the sexes and the structure of the family. However, this was replaced by a masculine intellectual culture that excluded women when the project of the Enlightment came to be carried out politically. As soon as this project became more fully “public”, it excluded women and with them the most radical potential salon culture and its affirmation of distinctions: social value based on the difference of each contributor, cultivated through discourse, rather than birthright.”