The development and increased visibility of social movements in the last few years has made it clear just how much knowledge movements generate. This knowledge is generated across the globe, and in many contexts and a variety of ways.
We are activists from different movements and different countries, researchers working with movements, and progressive academics from various countries. We have been involved in many different projects to support and develop the recent knowledge generation processes around contemporary social movements. Through this work we have come to recognise how much we stand to learn from each other – from the specific experiences of movements, from the languages that have been developed within and around different movements, and from different places and times.
The purpose of this journal is to learn from each other’s struggles:
- across movements and issues
- across continents and cultures
- across theoretical and disciplinary traditions.
The journal will be a space for abstraction from and translation between movements. It will seek to develop analysis and knowledge by both movement participants and academics who are developing movement-relevant theory and research. The journal seeks to include material that can be used in concrete ways by movements. The material may do this through its content, but also through its language, purpose and form. We hope this process will allow generic lessons to be learned from specific movement processes and experiences. We hope to translate knowledge across and between different movement contexts. Movements have always generated knowledge, both internally and in alliance with other movements.
We would like to continue the rich tradition already established by many activists, researchers and academics. It is the aim of this journal to add to and amplify the processes that already exist; the journal does not seek to substitute itself in any way for these already existing processes.
Our vision is for a practitioner journal where activist and academic peers will review each other’s work as part of this process of translation. We will be seeking both formal research (qualitative and quantitative) and practically-grounded work on all aspects of social movements. We will be seeking work in a range of different formats, suited to the different voices speaking within the journal. These might range across (for example):
- conventional articles
- review essays
- facilitated discussions and interviews
- action notes
- teaching notes
- key documents and analysis
- book reviews
- …and beyond.
Our focus in the editing process will be on bringing out and sharing the quality of each other’s knowledge from one movement to another. We will seek to assist authors to find ways of expressing their understanding, so that we all can be heard across geographical, social and political distances.
The journal will be online, free, and multilingual, in order to make it as widely accessible as possible. Our hope is to have a number of semi-autonomous groups focussed in different regions of the world and on different languages. These groups would share a common vision and translate articles from and for each other, but with a wide degree of freedom in how they go about developing their own section of the journal.
Please join us
We are looking for activist researchers, whether in movement or academic contexts, who are engaged in developing knowledge from and for social movements and feel they might be interested in working with us to develop this project.
We are also looking for theorists, activists and academics who may not be interested in being this closely involved, but would be willing to sit on an editorial advisory board and review articles, suggest directions, etc.
We are working on building links with possible editorial groups beyond the one group already in existence, recruiting an advisory board and attracting funding for translation and technical support. All suggestions and help will be very gratefully received!
If you are interested in this project and would like to participate, please email Laurence Cox.