The full journal will be published online here shortly, entirely Open-Access and in print quality PDF format. We’re just getting the technical things sorted out.
Additionally, I’ll be up at Diablo Valley College on Feb 28 alongside Albert Ponce, Brooke Lober, and others to talk about abolitionist politics generally, and how the journal project fits into that work. And we’ll have lots of copies of Issue One on hand as well. So, if you’re in the Bay area, come and join us!
Hopefully this makes Active Intolerance more usable for teaching and gets it into the hands of more folks. Moreover, if you are interested in getting a copy to someone on the inside, please let me know and I’ll be happy to help in any way that I can!
The panel will feature presentations from Natalie Cisneros (U. Seattle), Andrea Pitts (UNC-Charlotte), Falguni Sheth (Emory), Perry Zurn (American U.), and myself. It will be moderated by Kyoo Lee (CUNY). We’re going to be building on (and moving beyond) the work in the book that Perry and I co-edited, Active Intolerance (which features chapters from Cisneros, Sheth, and Zurn). This panel tries to continue a line of questioning that Perry and I keep coming back to: what precisely did the GIP mean when they insisted that their work was to heighten intolerance, to embrace a seemingly illiberal virtue and direct it toward intolerable institutions? The GIP, on the first page of their 1971 publication Intolerable 1: An Inquiry into 20 Prisons, succinctly listed some of these: “the courts, the cops, the hospitals and asylums, school, military service, the press, the state, and above all the prisons.” But surely, this list is not enough. And surely, we must do more than simply make such a list. This is what we’ll be thinking about.
The event is open to the public, so please come and join us.
If you’re in the Philly/Glassboro area this week, I’ll be giving a lecture on Feb. 23rd at Rowan University as part of their Theorizing at Rowen series, entitled, “Abolitionist Killjoys and the Social Life of Social Death.”
It is a pretty wide-ranging conversation, but focused primarily on a few chapters of the book, but also reflecting on what drove us to work on this book: our interests in prison and police abolition and doing something with Foucault that goes beyond the typical work that makes up most “Foucault studies” scholarship.
I think one of the key points comes near the end: thinking about what role folks like us (situated in academia and operating from various positions of structural privilege) have in the projects of prison abolition, Black liberation, and human freedom.
Specifically, I’m thinking about a line that I contributed, and in which I’m most invested, comes right at the end:
If prison abolition is really going to be the work of collective liberation, those of us in positions which enjoy and maintain the domination and marginalization of others are going to have lose those positions, actively work to undermine them, and build a world in which those positions simply no longer exist. To think, however, that such “losses” are going to be painful is to presume (wrongly, I think) that what far too many of us hold today is rightfully “ours” in the first place.