Rethinking Freedom

Strategies for Winning Freedom


Today, activists on the left of the political spectrum are seized with the question: how to organise politically to challenge authoritarianism, inequality, climate change and many other ills that are haunting the world today? While there may be agreement on the need for social change, there are varied ideas on how to get there. Grappling with these issues requires reflection on emancipatory experiments and strategies for winning freedom that have emerged in the 21st century. Enriching these reflections are recent and ongoing struggles across the world: the 2011 revolutionary moment in the Arab world, Africa’s “third-wave protests” to municipalism in Spain. These different struggles have placed urgent questions on the table: what visions and imaginations are being constructed in the search for freedom? Will freedom be won and secured through an insurrectionary route and marking a complete break with the past? Does the gradual approach to change have a place in how we think about winning freedom today? Does the institutional or electoral path to power offer any insights to those struggling to win freedom today? Is there a need to shift from the centrality of the “national” towards a politics that centres the “local or sub-national”? In this module, participants will consider all these questions as part of a reflection on their own struggles in pursuit of freedom.

This module aims to answer these questions:

  1. What are the strategic debates that activists are engaged in today in relation to the struggle for freedom?
  2. What kinds of imaginations and visions of the future are being crafted in these struggles for freedom?
  3. Is it possible to link our analysis about the roots of oppression, our rage and resistance and our dreams for a better future into a winning combination?

Course Outline

Day 1: Introduction

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5: Wrapping up

*these times are a guide only.