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On things and comrades

The light is from the East… not only the liberation of the working class. The light is from the East – in a new relation to man, to woman, and to objects. Objects in our hands should also be equal, also be comrades, and not black, gloomy slaves like they have here.

The art of the East should be nationalized and rationed out. Objects will be understood, will become people’s friends and comrades, and people will begin to know how to laugh and enjoy and converse with things…

Commodity fights in Post-2008 Athens: Zapatistas coffee, Kropotkinian drinks and Fascist rice

Every given commodity fights for itself, cannot acknowledge the others, and attempts to impose itself everywhere as if it were the only one... (Debord, 1967: 66)

Fate work: A conversation

In April 2011, Valentina Desideri and Stefano Harney met at the Spring Seminars of the Performance Art Forum (PAF) in St Erme, France. Desideri, a dancer and performance artist, and Harney a university professor in strategy, shared an interest in the work of Suely Rolnick and Lygia Clark.

FUL’s free work

Introduction

Digital labour in the academic context: Challenges for academic staff associations

Overview

The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) represents 65,000 teachers, researchers, librarians and other academic professionals at 122 colleges and universities across Canada. CAUT defends academic freedom, assists its members with collective bargaining and grievance handling and advocates on a range of public policy matters related to post-secondary education and the broader struggle for social justice.

Information workers in the academy: The case of librarians and archivists at the University of Western Ontario

In 2004 I joined the highly lauded profession of academic librarianship with a newly minted Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) in hand and a great deal of energy and enthusiasm. My inaugural appointment at one of the Canada’s largest, most well regarded research institutions was quite simply a perfect fit for me, and I was very excited to begin my career.

The singularity of intellectual property

According to futurist Ray Kurzweil, we are fast approaching ‘The Singularity’, or a point at which the rapid acceleration of technological capabilities will reach a point beyond human comprehension. The subsequent rise of machine intelligence will far surpass our capabilities, rendering corporeal beings nearly unnecessary. It is predicted that the leading edge of this singularity will occur approximately by the year 2035.

What about citizens?

It has been an honor to participate in this conference. I hesitate to use the word ‘contribute’, but it’s been a pleasure to be here.

The topic of our final panel is ‘Looking Ahead’. My principal concern is the future of unions in the digital industry. The good news is we have something of a head start. Along with airlines, media/entertainment is the most heavily unionized private-sector industry in the United States. However, as with the airlines, our employers are huge and rapidly getting huger.

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