Well, a lot has happened this week…
I’d rather not spend time discussing or debriefing political news that I feel has been broken down with enough nuance and perspective. We all know what has happened, from the debate I regret wasting several hours watching, to the news that we saw on Twitter Thursday night.
Amidst everything else that has happened though, classes finally started up again after four months off. What amount of time I did not spend in classes and working on assignments I spent actively trying to continue my political education. I joined two study groups going over two different topics surrounding radical politics, started reading two books I got before I left California, and enthusiastically debated my roommates. Through all of this, there wasn’t as much discourse about the current political climate, intentionally, because the work of organizing and learning in solidarity with one another is beyond the confines of the popular political zeitgeist. That also isn’t to say that learning can exist in the abstract; in fact, it’s the complete opposite of that.
As I was watching a documentary this past week about the League of Revolutionary Black Workers and the Dodge Revolutionary Union Movement, I still seek and see some vision of a better future for us. It’s difficult at times to learn about activism that may not have succeeded. But as much as that is challenging, what’s inspiring is seeing how resilient and creative organizers always are in whatever circumstances they face. That resilience comes from the fact that seeking liberation is the only way to truly survive. They saw abolition, their union work, their anti-capitalist views as a means towards seeking the freedom of Black people in America. To have something so complex to understand and discuss is challenging. However, to do so in a group, in a setting where you can bounce strategies, reflect on your work, and collectively admire the work of those who came before you is exciting.
The challenge as classes have started is how to fight through the dreaded Zoom fatigue, continuing this exciting education outside the classroom, and also somehow making time to seek more joy in whatever time I can. I’ve written this summer about how challenging it is to learn alone. But perhaps in collective struggle, mutual brainstorming, and strategizing, it all can be a sustainable way to keep all of this going. Who knows truly how likely I’ll be able to end up keeping on top of whatever I’m working on. But that doesn’t mean that this will be an ongoing process and it isn’t something I’m dedicated to pursuing. So for now, collective reading, writing, and brainstorming are how I hope to continue my education while I continue to work through schooling. That’s the plan.
Being Noah Tesfaye #151: A Student of Two Schools
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