From the Arab Spring to mass demonstrations in South America to Occupy movements worldwide, the past year has been hailed as the beginning of a new era of social movements. As the Occupy movement collectively determines the best path forward following widespread evictions and arrests, no one can doubt that it has already had a lasting impact on the way that we organize for social and environmental justice.
In addition to bringing income inequality to the forefront of political discourse, the movement has demonstrated new ways (or ancient ways, reimagined) of organizing and taking care of one another. Through strategies such as consensus-based general assemblies, the human microphone, gift economies and volunteer committees to feed, clothe, inform and entertain one another, the movements have begun to model a sustainable, non-hierarchical alternative to the capitalist system.
Through word of mouth and social media, the strategies and best practices for building this alternative spread from city to city. Movements supported one another in troubleshooting and mediating conflict when it arose, and in maintaining non-violence even when subject to violent oppression from authorities.
The Occupy movement has demonstrated a tenacious and effective commitment to non-violent, collaborative tactics. The following photos, from various photographers, capture some of the ways in which the Occupy movements have helped us to reimagine how we organize and relate to one another within our collective struggle for justice.
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