[resource-net] The Optics of the Commons: an invitation for reflection and transformation

Georgia Nicolau georgia.nicolau at gmail.com
Fri Sep 27 22:38:40 CEST 2019

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*"The commons is what gives meaning to our existence" Kum'tum
Akroá-Gamella, from the  Akroá-Gamella people, state of Maranhão, northeast
of Brazil.*

We believe that the commons, in its multiple perspectives, is an essential
kaleidoscope concept for facing this historic moment of hopelessness, in
Brazil and in the world.

The Optics of the Commons series brings together sixteen short episodes
featuring voices and ideas from young experts and activists. In the videos,
they address different perspectives on living and making communities based
on a diversity of studies, practices and experiences. Seen together, the
approaches produce inspiring resonances.
Taking inspiration from these words, the Procomum Institute
<https://www.procomum.org/the-institute-procomum/?lang=en> invites everyone
to reflect and question our ways of existing, living and building

Watch and share! Let's talk about how together we can dream - and build-
other possible futures. *All videos have english subtitles*.

"I look at the commons from the perspective of the black people, who have
always been separated from the State and capital” Bianca Santana, writer,
journalist and researcher defines the Commons as the goods shared by
certain communities, their experiences and resistances.

Click here to watch the full video

The occupation of public spaces, conflicts and the construction of public
policies that prioritize cities for people are themes and strategies raised
by Marcio Black, cultural producer, political scientist and member of the
Black System Collective, to interpret the Commons.

Click here to watch the full video

“The commons is what  gives meaning to our existence,” shares Kum'tum
Akroá-Gamella, a member of the Akroá-Gamella people, indigenous from
Northeast of Brazil. For him, we are living a crisis that endangers the
very existence of the planet because of practices that are part of a
certain ideology of progress. Ancestral knowledge and a new way of seeing
and understanding nature defines the commons for Kum'tum.

Click here to watch the full video

It is through the exchange, encounter and strengthening of autonomous
experiences of traditional communities and spaces of resistance throughout
Brazil and Latin America that the Collective Etinerâncias believes that the
commons moves and is present.

Click here to watch the full video

“The commons means a production focused on sharing and a permanent cycle of
learning and distribution,” says João Brant, associate at the Procomum
Institute and consultant in the areas of communication and cultural

Click here to watch the full video

Abundance of water, soil and fresh air are common natural goods, but there
are limitations placed by private property, for example. These reflections
accompany and define the commons for Cinthia Mendonça, artist, researcher
and director of Silo - Arte e Latitude Rural.

Click here to watch the full video

What struggles, conflicts and constructions fit the definition of commons?
Does natural goods define it in its complexity? The value of the commons to
Jean Tible, professor of political science at USP- University of São Paulo.
Click here to watch the full video

"The commons has to do with practices, relationships, territories and has
to do with people, collective subjects," says Tica Moreno, a member of SOF
(Sempreviva Feminist Organization), Master in Humanities and Social
Sciences at the Federal University of ABC and PhD in Sociology by USP.

Click here to watch the full video

The commons, for those who come from the peripheries, is in the daily
encounter and the plurality of actions. It surpasses the limits, the
margins and defies the walls that prevent the construction of a more
democratic and fair city. This is one of the commons perspectives for
Mariana Belmont, journalist and member of the Imargem collective.

Click here to watch the full video

“You can't have the commons where there is inequality. You can't have the
commons where there is oppression,” says Juliana Gonçalves, journalist and
human rights activist. For her, it is from the micro to the macro, from the
margins to the center that practices and knowledges that make up the
commons are constructed and replicated.

Click here to watch the full video

What values do we exchange daily? How do they affect us? What connects us
and what makes us divide spaces? How do we create cultures for the commons?
Thiago Carrapatoso is a journalist and master of the Center for Curatorial
Studies (CCS) at Bard College, and presents commons from other perspectives
on the bodies, values and cultural impositions.

Click here to watch the full video

How is the commons presented in contemporary struggles? In resistances,
existences - in the countryside and in the city. In cooperative relations
and the confrontation with capitalism. Alana Moraes, an anthropologist and
doctoral student at the Museu Nacional-UFRJ, presents perspectives that
define and confront the commons.

Click here to watch the full video

“The commons is what endures, that is perpetuated for centuries. It is in
the transversality between art, science, technology and ancestry”. Ricardo
Brazileiro, computer scientist, master in Media, Interaction and Creative
Systems for the Internet of Things, defends living in networks, occupying
territories, spaces, free technologies and the sacred as opportunities for
the commons.

Click here to watch the full video

Knowledge, culture and science belong to everyone and belong to no one at
the same time. Henrique Parra, sociologist and activist, professor of
social sciences at the Federal University of São Paulo, explains the set of
distinct political principles, practices and meanings that define the

Click here to watch the full video

Constantly learning and unlearning, being with people and building with
them, finding commonality in differences is what motivates Georgia Nicolau,
director of the Procomum Institute.

Click here to watch the full video

The commons is the place of the in between, it is the crossroads, the
dialogue and the convergence. A political device of social transformation.
Rodrigo Savazoni, from the Procomum Institute, sees the commons as
construction, possibility and practice.

Click here to watch the full video
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