Dave Oswald Mitchell is a freelance writer, editor, and researcher. He co-edited the book Beautiful Trouble: A Toolbox for Revolution (OR Books, 2012) and edited Briarpatch Magazine from 2005 to 2010.
Settler treaty card reduxIt’s been an enormous pleasure to return to Briarpatch to guest edit this issue.
Drugs, gangs, and Harper’s war on the poor
If the drug war is a tool of social and territorial control and capital accumulation, it’s not enough to simply accuse Harper’s Conservatives of pursuing a misguided strategy.
An interview with Michael Stone
Many activists practice yoga, but few would describe their yoga practice as a form of activism or treat their activism as an expression of their yoga practice. Michael Stone is working to change that.
At the borders of human rights
I’ve undergone 19 years of schooling, but I’d say my real education came the summer after I finished my graduate degree. I spent that growing season, and the next, as part of a frontline literacy program in Ontario, working and living on farms alongside migrant workers from Mexico and the Caribbean, picking tomatoes and sweet corn, priming tobacco, harvesting ginseng.
Nationalism as pathology
George Orwell wrote that in a time of universal deceit, telling the truth can be a revolutionary act. Similarly, in an age of lies-passed-off-as-truth (the propaganda model), truth-passed-off-as-lies (satire) has a power all its own.
The next wave will come from the South
This issue of Briarpatch is about opening our activism to new voices and new perspectives. As Naomi Wolf recently observed, “our (Western) moment of feminist leadership is over now, for good reasons… . [T]he leadership role is shifting to women in the developing world.”
Collective power and the responsibility to protest
As this issue goes to press, three thousand rallies are taking place in communities around the world calling for action in Copenhagen on climate change. In February, anti-poverty and indigenous rights activists will take to the streets of Vancouver to protest the Olympics.
The rise of the planetariat
Turtles and teamsters, together at last. Ten years after the anti-globalization movement shut down the World Trade Organization negotiations, that slogan, and the vision it embodied of trade unionists and environmentalists joining forces to halt neoliberal globalization in its tracks, continues to inspire activists in both camps.
Education for a change
For two summers several years ago I worked as a literacy tutor for migrant workers in southern Ontario. I had read Paolo Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed and brought with me all kinds of ideas about popular education, but it was all just theory for me at that point. Those two summers taught me more about power, privilege, dignity and the emancipatory potential of education than anything I have done before or since.
How to stop destroying the planet & love the global recession
This ship may not yet be going down, but it’s certainly heading straight for the rocks. How do we change course? Or failing that, where are the lifeboats that can preserve us and carry us back to shore? In less nautical terms, these are the sorts of questions with which this issue of Briarpatch is concerned.