Rebel Cities: From the Right to the City to the Urban Revolution is a book that draws on the very interesting idea, initially proposed by Henri Lefebvre in 1968, about the need for a renewed and transformed urban life. Lefebvre dubbed this need for transformation of the urban landscape and life ‘right to the city’: a right that those producing and sustaining the city lack and must fight to claim.
Conference organizers: Ekaterina Chertkovskaya, Konstantin Stoborod and Keti Chukhrov at NCCA Moscow, Russia, 6-7 May 2015
The very first ephemera conference, ‘Web of capturing the moving mind’, which took place on a Trans-Siberian train, had Moscow as its starting point. 10 years later, ephemera is happy to announce it is going back to Moscow, so as to make our minds move again and cross all sorts of boundaries that constitute us and the worlds we inhabit.
A massive protest took to the streets and squares of the world in 2011. In a sense, we can almost speak of a global protest movement, emerging simultaneously in different cities and spreading across the globe, demanding a just society, real democracy, and condemning capitalism. A renewed feeling of urgency brought people en masse together in a struggle for liberation from the yoke of the dictatorship of both repressive political regimes, and capitalist financial markets.
To suggest a ‘consumerist critique of capitalism’ sounds quite oxymoronic – and even more so a ‘socialist defence of consumer culture’. Consumerism is widely seen as the cultural expression of developed capitalism, and Marxist analyses from the 1970s onwards have tried to show how the development of an absorbent market for consumer goods was driven by the needs of accumulation and valorization in late capitalism (e.g. Mandel, 1975).