Revolutions of desire: The Wingnut Anarchist Collective

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There is no desire for revolution, as there is no desire for power, desire to oppress or to be oppressed; but revolution, oppression, power, etc., are the actual component lines of a given assemblage.

Gilles Deleuze, Dialogues II

David Graeber has recently argued that part of the neoliberal political project involves inculcating in those governed, by whatever means, the impossibility of alternatives to the existing political-economic regime that is Capitalism.   The result “is a relentless campaign against the human imagination”.  Imagination, desire, individual creativity, all that was unleashed in the great revolution of 1968, these things “were to be contained strictly in the domain of consumerism, or perhaps in the virtual realities of the Internet.  In all other realms they were to be strictly banished.” (David Graeber, “A Practical Utopian’s Guide to the Coming Collapse”, The Baffler, 22).

Any revolution then must be as much about politics, economics, society, as about desire and the imagination.  Indeed, none of these are separate or distinct realities.  But then revolution may take place wherever/whenever the imagination plays, and it does so in any creative act.  A revolution is an opening up, an unleashing of the imagination, of the imagination in directions of collective creativity, shared and freely assumed.  A revolution is the imagination unchained, allowed thereby to explore ways of living in which all equally and freely take up the task of making themselves, together … a task that is without end.

Such revolutions are multiple, plural, unstable; large or small of scale.  But what they leave behind are traces and resonances of forms of life beyond the frames of State-Capital.

It is with these thoughts passing through his mind, that in joyful solidarity, we celebrate the Wingnut Anarchist Collective of Richmond Virginia …

 

From the website:

About the Wingnut

The Wingnut is an anarchist collective house in Southern Barton Heights in Richmond, Virginia.

The Wingnut hosts all sorts of sober, all ages events, such as acoustic musical performances, craft nights, food not bombs, movie screenings, workshops, group meetings, copwatch, anarchist black cross etc.

The Wingnut Statement of Purpose which was distributed to hundreds of houses in Southern Barton Heights.

Hello!

The house you may have noticed at 2005 Barton Avenue is called The Wingnut, and is a project of the Wingnut Anarchist Collective. We hope to maintain a positive relationship with our community and the individuals within it. Therefore we feel that it is important for us to be upfront and honest about who we are and what we believe.

As anarchists, we do our best to live by the principles of mutual aid, anti-authoritarianism, and direct action.

Mutual aid for us encompasses a wide variety of things. We believe in sharing our resources – material, physical, mental and emotional. We share our food, labor, knowledge and support freely with those who would do the same for us. We strive to create safe spaces for children, elders, disabled people, those with emotional or psychological trauma, those in recovery from drug and alcohol abuse, and people of all races, religions, national origins, genders and sexual orientations.

We seek to support our community in ways that make everyone feel safer, stronger, and more empowered.

For us, anti-authoritarianism often overlaps with mutual aid. We oppose the state and its agents, including politicians, the police, the military industrial complex, corporations and greedy developers in whatever forms they may take, as well as other forms of control and oppression including capitalism, patriarchy, racism, homophobia and all bigotry and oppressive behavior.

If mutual aid and anti-authoritarianism are the “why?” behind our actions, direct action is the “how?” We live our values by actively working to create the world we want to live in NOW.

Rather than relying on the benevolence of insurance companies and the expertise of doctors, we learn to maintain and repair our bodies and those of our friends ourselves. Rather than lobby the city for a place to have a community center, we open our home to our neighbors. Rather than watch people go hungry and say to ourselves “someone should do something about that,” we gather extra food wherever it is to be found and redistribute it to those who need it. Rather than rely on the police to protect us or settle our disputes, we try to open dialogs with those with whom we have conflicts, and arm and defend ourselves and our neighbors.

These are just a few examples of ways direct action can be applied. By taking our lives into our own hands, all of us as individuals and as communities can live happier, healthier, freer lives.

So if you’re interested in what we’re doing and would like to help out, have any questions about what we are doing and why, or if you’re in need of assistance with anything, stop in or give us a call. Our home phone number is 804 303 5449.

We’re anarchists, and we’re here to help.

“We are going to inherit the earth. There is not the slightest doubt about that. The bourgeoisie my blast and burn its own world before it finally leaves the stage of history. We are not afraid of ruins. We who ploughed the prairies and built the cities can build again, only better this time. We carry a new world, here in our hearts. That world is growing this minute.”
-Buenaventura Durruti
1896-1936
Spanish Anarchist and Revolutionary Against the Fascist Franco Regime

“Whoever lays his hands on me to govern me is a usurper and a tyrant: I declare him my enemy!”
Pierre-Joseph Proudhon
1809-1865
French anarchist theorist

“You have to understand that people have to pay the price for peace. If you dare to struggle, you dare to win. If you dare not struggle, you don’t deserve to win. Let me say: ‘Peace to you, if you’re willing to fight for it.’”
Fred Hampton
1948-1969
Deputy Chairman of Illinois Black Panther Party
assassinated by the police while asleep in his bed

 

Film: Roses On My Table, by Ethan Silverstein …

(From the website): Check out this movie our friend put a lot of work into! Keep in mind that not everyone in this film is still a Wingnut resident, or necessarily supportive of all Wingnut projects. Clearly a 20 minute film can’t capture the complexities of our lives. Things aren’t always sunshine and roses. But we hope that everyone in this movie is doing awesome anarchist things and having a great time doing them!

 

Our sharing of Wingnut is not meant to replace a visit to the website, but to help diffuse among as many as possible what the Collective does, to help crack the “campaign against the human imagination”.

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2 Responses to Revolutions of desire: The Wingnut Anarchist Collective

  1. Chasman says:

    A revolution is the imagination unchained, allowed thereby to explore ways of living in which all equally and freely take up the task of making themselves…

    Well put. But here's a depressing thought: we're doing this already, and these are the selves we've decided to create together. (Cue the latest inhumanity.)

  2. Gavroche says:

    Yet it is precisely because we do not "explore ways of living in which all equally and freely take up the task of making thmeselves" that we are "inhuman" to each other.

    The very warmest to the Chasman

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