The question of how CI can contribute to political change and how it is political is of great contemporary interest. The mere fact that people touch each other and connect in ways that challenge conventional ways of relating is what makes is political for many practitioners. Others, like Jashana, yearn for more concrete action and connection to wider political process. For one of our key supporters, CI offers a model for communication that is more productive that current more confrontational ways of relating in global politics.
In Freiburg 2013 the question of politics was a key theme of the festival, strongly influenced by the intensive teachers, that included Thomas Kampe, that year. Jashana, would certainly have come to a different conclusion had she come to that year’s festival.
We would like in this theme to document examples of how CI is contributing to political process and challenging current politics. We know of CI being used in Sweden to support activists. We also hear of CI increasingly being taught in India and China, extending its possible influence but also coming against very different political structures.
We invite you to contribute to this thread by sharing your experience of CI and the political. We also hope showing the documentary in many different contexts will open up this question to new audiences and consequently new insights. It may be that people not practicing the form may be the ones who have the clearest ideas of how it might contribute to political process.
11. January 2015.. David Graeber’s use of prefigurative politics to argue for anthropology working with and for social movements, CI being one such movement, is very interesting. In a very vibrant way the community and communities of CI are doing a form of prefigurative politics. Do check out his article in the excellent HAU, an open access anthropology journal.
2 May 2017.. I am drawn to a wonderful post by Aurora Westfeld called ‘Contact improvisation-self-indulgent or subversive‘, which has reminded me that we need to get moving theorising how Five Ways In has facilitated the revelation of the political in CI on many level. Alyssa and I will be working on this in the coming months.
To contribute to this theme please go to our feedback section.