Pierre Clastres’s “The Duty to Speak”

November’s Reading: Pierre Clastres, “The Duty to Speak” (1974)

Wednesday, 16 November 2011
7 PM
VIVO (1965 Main Street)

Guest-Facilitated by Raymond Boisjoly

Keeping in proximity with the Imminent Future presentation, November’s edition of No Reading will be guest-facilitated by Raymond Boisjoly. We will be looking at Pierre Clastres’s “The Duty to Speak” drawn from Society Against the State. This short work is a meditation on the interrelations of speech and power. As he does throughout this collection of essays, Clastres shuttles between articulations of this relationship in cultures within and outside of State forms. Clastres’s view of primitive societies is broadly opposed to an evolutionary conception that holds that such formations are destined to grow into state forms. To this end, his work is preoccupied with the threshold that seperates hierarchy from horizontality and his look at societies without States is preoccupied with the means by which these formations preserve their condition.

Pierre Clastres was a French anthropologist and ethnographer. He conducted fieldwork with the Aché (Guayaki), Guarani, and Yanomami peoples of South America. Books such as Archaeology of Violence and Society Against the State, written in the 1970s, work to articulate the political positivities of these groups–taking in their relationships to violence, economics and social organization.

Raymond Boisjoly is an artist who lives and works in Vancouver. He has had a handful of opportunities to show work in the city, in the last few years, at spaces such as Lucky’s, the central branch of the public library, Access, and Republic. Much of this work seems to be engaged with the form, figure, situation, and functioning of language.


In collaboration with FUSE Magazine: “Occupy” movements in relation to colonial dynamics in Canada

In collaboration with FUSE Magazine

Wednesday, 02 November 2011
7 PM
LIFT (1137 Dupont)

Facilitated by Gina Badger and cheyanne turions

In collaboration with FUSE, November’s salon will feature readings from the magazine and its library of review materials, focusing on those relating to FUSE’s States of Postcoloniality series. Through group reading and discussion, we will consider the current “Occupy” movements in relation to colonial dynamics in Canada.

We will be reading the following texts aloud:

Shiri Pasternak’s “Occupy(ed) Canada: The political economy of Indigenous dispossession in Canada”

Helga Tawil-Souri’s “Occupy Wall Street to a global intifada?”

Harsha Walia’s “Letter to Occupy Together Movement”

JohnPaul Montano’s “An open letter to the Occupy Wall Street activists”

And watching a short clip of Tim Wise on the Rachel Maddow show.

FUSE is one of Canada’s foremost critical periodicals on art and culture. With a focus on visual and media art, and a strong emphasis on the diverse communities that make up the contemporary Canadian art world, FUSE examines emerging issues and debates from the perspectives of politically engaged cultural producers.

Gina Badger is an artist and writer working in the expanded field of sculpture and installation. Working iteratively and across media, her work is entangled in the wondrously post-natural and its environmental histories, and her favored research methods include listening, walking, eating and drinking. She has presented work internationally at celebrated venues, notably The Kitchen (NYC); LACMA (Los Angeles); Issue Project Room (NYC); and the London School of Economics and Political Science, and has published in Scapegoat JournalPublic Journal, and Byproduct: On the Excess of Embedded Art Practices (YYZ). Currently working between Toronto, Montreal, and various locations south of the 49th parallel, Badger holds an M.S. in Visual Studies from MIT. A collaborator at heart, Gina is a member of the Montreal-based Artivistic Collective, and is currently the editorial director of FUSE.

Image credit: 06 April Movement tent, Tahrir Square, Cairo, 29 June 2011. Photograph by Mona Seif.