Festival Theme #3: Revolutionary Care: Building Health Autonomy

#OpenVillage Festival theme

How are we to live in this world? How do we create communal lives? We want to be free from physical want, we want pleasure and connection with those around us, and we want purpose. We want to laugh over good food, to have the time and mental space to enjoy a sunset, to feel good about our children’s future, to take care of our loved ones and be taken care of in turn, to commune with the natural world around us. And we must be clear, in their real, rather than commodified, exclusionary form, these desires are inherently revolutionary. They are incompatible with a capitalist world that atomizes us as individuals, divides us as members of precarious classes, and makes us physically and mentally ill.

The question is not why, it is how. How do we build a life with those around us? How do we create a world in the ruins of the old?

Building a life together means we must reconsider every aspect of our lives. Our urban gardens, our communes, communal dinners, elder-care, child-care practices, mental health practices, the riots, the side hustles for money, manipulations of institutions, shoplifting habits.

How do we deal with money? How do we create beauty? How do we struggle through patriarchy and oppression within ourselves? How do we provide care? What structures do we need to create? What lessons can we learn? What inspires us? What are we scared of? How can we create optimal conditions for our children and our elderly? How can we stop being so scared of each other?

As the indigenous around the word have been showing us, we must call out our own “Basta ya!” (“Enough is Enough”) and fight for a “world in which many worlds can fit”.

The OpenVillage Festival is a #nospectators event. Each talk, workshop or exhibit is contributed by participants. Curators work with session leaders to make the most out of interests and learning expectations. Contribute to how sessions shape up by engaging in discussion threads below the originating post. Or see below for how to go about proposing a session.


The Edge of Funding - Sustainability and Financial Models

You want to sustain the good work you are doing. In a resource strained world, you need to be smarter in how you search and acquire resources. What models are most future proof? A panel + open space discussion!

Join the conversation, help shape the session

Session Title...

Add session description here.... propose a session by following the steps outlined below.

Session Title...

Add session description here.... propose a session by following the steps outlined below.

Session Title...

Add session description here.... propose a session by following the steps outlined below.

Session Title...

Add session description here.... propose a session by following the steps outlined below.

Session Title...

Add session description here.... propose a session by following the steps outlined below.

OPEN NOW: Call for sessions! To propose one, take these 3 simple steps:

  1. Register for the Festival here.
  2. Upload a session description here: it should be a reflection about your work and where you see the role of communities in advancing it. Here is a more detailed brief. Once your proposal is posted other community members will leave thoughtful comments to help refine it. The Program team will contact you with a proposal for allocated time within two weeks from the time of posting.
  3. Join our global #CountOnMe team to spread the news about your session and others!

More information:

openvillage Festival: 19-21 October

Venue: Brussels @ The Reef (TBC)

Get in touch: openvillage on twitter | community@edgeryders.eu


Does communism no longer mean a Marxist based government?

I ask because “communism” is a pretty loaded word that triggers set reactions in some -many still - people. So if we use it I think we will be explaining it a lot. Thus outside of ideology it isn’t efficient.

Hi @johncoate, some of us asked the same questions as the collective posted their call here: Revolutionary Care: Building Health Autonomy- Call for Submissions for OpenVillage Festival - #4 by woodbinehealth

I understand they now have changed their framing, so maybe @woodbinehealth can update us and this page too? Note that in Festival discussions where we are directing all festival participants this is a pinned page, so one of the first people see when coming in. Thanks!

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Should we not then change the title of this topic?

@noemi @johncoate Thanks for the questions. We talked about this topic in the reflections post we just published. Overall, I think we should aim to be clear with the language we choose, but also recognize that our words will always be co-opted by the right/neo-liberal agenda. In addition, they are inherently loaded words, we are in fact talking about changing the world, and not everyone will be into that. But also recognizing that certain words have become trigger words not because of what they mean, but the meaning that capitalism/nation states/ governments have put into them. Communism being case in point. When most people think about communism, they think Stalinist USSR or other state controlled system. We harken back to the original meaning of the word, most used in examples like early Marx theory, the French Commune, or the communism of the Spanish Civil War. Even now, words like “autonomy”, “mindfulness”, “wellness” have all been co-opted and likely in the future will be unusable. What I think our mission is is to be explicitly clear about the meaning of words and refuse to let the powers that be taint that meaning. A long path fer sure!

I agree with you for the most part though I still think in this case putting communism in the title of a presentation or workshop or something similar will require repeatedly defining what you mean by it. Now if that is the intent that is another matter.

And yes change the world but not through requiring a systematized mode of living. We want to show by example that a group of people can come together to accomplish good things and living together accelerates it. But not everyone is going to want to do that. But they will still be productive players.

digging deeper into what is meant by communal, communist, etc, if it means living together does it also mean sharing everything? Pooling all money? Is there a point where something is owned by an individual? On The Farm we pooled our money but allowed some personal possessions like clothing and musical instruments. On the bus even the clothes were shared. Nobody owned anything for themselves except maybe a toothbrush.

Qualifying concepts/ assumptions is half the battle in substantive discussions, for better or worse, haha