Award-winning poet and scholar Joshua Clover discusses his new book, Riot. Strike. Riot: The New Era of Uprisings. Clover identifies our time as an 'age of riots,' where the struggle of people versus state and capital has taken to the streets, and theorizes the riot as the form of the coming insurrection.
Following his talk, Clover engages in conversation with Stan Douglas, a Vancouver-based artist whose work has addressed Vancouver's riot history and current social issues. The discussion is moderated by Melanie O'Brian, director of SFU Galleries.
About the Book
Riot. Strike. Riot: The New Era of Uprisings explores this 'age of riots' and offers a new understanding of this present moment and its history. Rioting was the central form of protest in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and was supplanted by the strike in the early nineteenth century. It returned to prominence in the 1970's, profoundly changed along with the coordinates of race and class.
From early wage demands to recent social justice campaigns pursued through occupations and blockades, Clover connects these protests to the upheavals of a sclerotic economy in a state of moral collapse. Historical events such as the global economic crisis of 1973 and the decline of organized labour, viewed from the perspective of vast social transformations, are the proper context for understanding these eruptions of discontent. As social unrest against an unsustainable order continues to grow, this valuable history will help guide future antagonists in their struggles toward a revolutionary horizon.