revolutionary movements

How Hot Is This Take!?

Hey give us money plz

Okay SKU fans, here’s the deal–

Gio and I desperately want to spend $300 - $400 on the Japanese blu-ray release. Why? 

BECAUSE WE WILL THEN BE ABLE TO RIP THE MUSICAL.

THERE’S SOME SORT OF HOUR LONG THING WITH THE MUSICAL AND MAYBE THE SECOND AND THIRD? WE DON’T KNOW???

Unfortunately, because this is the year of sweet merch, we already flattened our wallets getting other stuff, so we don’t have the cash to do this. So I’m proposing a deal here– help chip in, and we will make sure that the musical and anything else exclusive to the Japanese release that’s never going to show up on this side of the ocean gets mysteriously scanned, ripped, etc ad nauseam and just happens to get passed around the net here to literally anyone who wants it. As of right now, that means the musical plus that sweet copy of the back view of Utena and Anthy’s faceless red and black pics (you know, the one where they are holding hands?? <3 ). There are also images of the series characters drawn by Saito in the box art, and apparently some new exclusive art; there’s a gigantic book coming with it. There might be more. We don’t know. We won’t know until we get our damn hands on it, is the problem!

So what we are proposing is this– donate cash to us at emptymovement@gmail.com, and we will buy the thing. You know we aren’t going anywhere, plenty of you know us in person and even have our phone numbers and address, you know you can trust us, and… well 

hell, you’ve seen what we’ve done with all the art books we got, right?

We ripped them up for you, so you could have good copies to look at and edit and do whatever you want with.

Now, we realize that this is enough incentive for some of you, and that’s really freakin awesome. You know who you are, and I love you for it. But honestly… we have some unwrecked stuff just lying around here too. We don’t look at this stuff or use it at all, it just sits in our cupboard. So we figure, hell, why not give some stuff away too?

So basically, we will send one of these pieces to the first person who requests it (email: yasha@ohtori.nu) and donates (paypal at emptymovement@gmail.com) at or above the specified price (which is roughly average market price plus about tenbux for shipping, keeping in mind we’re in Canada).

Oh yeah and all of this stuff is in pretty good condition but not much of it is in perfect condition– we’ll be happy to provide pics to anyone interested, I just want to get this up where people will see it.


Miki UFO Catcher doll - $60

RGU Software Sculptors release t-shirt - we don’t know what size it is, it’s never been opened. We can open it if there’s demand but the price won’t change. It’s got the Touga/Little Utena/Saionji art on it - $60

Shitajiki/Pencil Board with movie promo art - $30 - Dibs has been called and money has been sent, I will take this off the list as soon as I have all the info I need.

This is Animation Artbook - $50 - Someone’s called dibs, but nothing is final yet.

Japanese Manga (Series) - $45 - Someone’s called dibs on this, but nothing is final yet.

Japanese Movie Manga - $15

SPG chibi keychain - $12 - Dibs has been called and money has been sent, this will be taken off the list as soon as we’ve got all the info we need

Mikage chibi Keychain - $12

Chu-Chu chibi keychain - $12

File folder from the 15th (??) anniversary art exhibition, drawn by Akemi Hayashi - $25 -  Dibs has been called and money has been sent, I will take this off the list as soon as I have all the info I need.

Doujinshi (all of these are already scanned and in the gallery, these are the duplicates we had and they are in good condition):

Rose Garden - $25

Kakumei Kettou - $35

Pluie de meteores - $10

That one with snotty-nosed weirdface Chu-Chu on the back - $10

Utena no Drug - $10




And now, last but not least,

if anyone gives us $50 or more and doesn’t want any of the other things, we will totally decant 2ml of either the Anthy or the Utena perfume and send it to you

This is not a “buying” thing. This is a “thank you” thing. We don’t want to give away too much of the perfume, because we did buy it for ourselves, but it’s also not fair that most people aren’t going to be able to get their hands on it.  So it’s going to be limited quantity, probably a max of 10ml per bottle. It’s not a heck of a lot of perfume, but 2ml is a usable amount, and we figure it’s probably the nicest way we have of saying thank you for a bigger donation. We’re going to find a way to make the teeny little bottles pretty, too.

(As for the perfume itself, if anyone wants to know what happened/is happening there I can post about it later. We might not be able to get the Akio perfume at all…)

So yeah, there you have it. And, should we happen to go over our goal amount, the money (paypal at emptymovement@gmail.com) would be used for the domain name plus the site hosting, and to finance even more SKU stuff to buy so we can put it online. We’ve spent hundreds this year already on such content, because really now

really

do you really think we’re ever going to stop?

Spoilers: 





NO

okay thanks a bunch for reading, you guys. If you want to send us cash for the japanese bluray release, you can paypal us at emptymovement@gmail.com. Please make sure to email me at yasha@ohtori.nu if you want us to send you one of the things (and mention it in the Paypal comments). I will post pics for anything people wish to see; for the most part, it is your bog-standard SKU merch in relatively good condition, with maybe a bent corner or something.


Edited to add:  hey guys I didn’t stress this enough but seriously any little bit helps, we know that a lot of people are financially rough, hell we wouldn’t be doing this if we were 100% great that way either, so if you can only pitch in five bucks please remember that makes a big difference too <3

Some Awesome Female Avant-Garde Artists

Now I have always been a very big fan of unconventional art movements. Not only do I appreciate how those art movements have influenced what we see today, but the history that prompted them is rather revolutionary. Today, I want to appreciate the women who aren’t as well-known as the great Frida Kahlo. This post is more focused in the late 1910’s, to the 1930’s period. It is to honour some of the out-of-the-box women that I admire so much, from all sorts of movements. Here we go!

Helen Lundeberg (1908–1999)

Not just a formally taught and talented artist, but Lundeberg was actually one of the founders of what would be known as the Post-Surrealism art movement, later leaning to abstraction in the 1950’s. She was not only talented, but extremely intelligent, earning a place at Stanford University for “brilliant children.” Now while I said I would focus on the lesser-known artists, Lundeberg is a rather more famous one. However she is a tough one to leave out. She was especially famous during the 1930’s. She was in charge to create multiple murals, and her exhibitions (including her early solo exhibits) were very successful. It’s interesting to see her works evolve during her life, yet remain distinctly recognizable as hers.

Above: Portrait of Inez, 1933, by Helen Lundeberg (1908–1999).

Sophie Taeuber-Arp (1889-1943)

Certainly a woman ahead of her time, Sophie Taeuber-Arp’s artwork as a painter, sculptor, textile designer, furniture, interior designer, architect and dancer all scream “modern woman.” She studied different art forms, primarily textile art, formally in some areas. She was quite heavy in the Dada scene, yet her Constructivist works are probably her most recognizable. Her use of colours of her geometric forms are what draw the eye. Taeuber-Arp’s talent and hard work earned her a position teaching weaving and other textile arts at the Zürich Kunstgewerbeschule (Zürich University of the Arts). She was a woman that appreciated art in all its forms, and many appreciated the way she presented them. In fact, her flexibility and talent is appreciated today, as she is, in fact, the only woman on the current series of Swiss banknotes in Switzerland.

Above: Oval Composition with Abstract Motifs, 1922, by Sophie Taeuber-Arp (1889-1943).

Marguerite Zorach (1887-1968)

Another intelligent artistic lady on the list, Marguerite Zorach became interested in art at a very young age. She, luckily, was blessed with very supportive parents that encouraged her to study everything related with liberal arts. People generally don’t get as unconventional as Zorach really was. Influenced by friends such as Picasso and Matisse, she is naturally recognized for her Fauvist work. Even her husband commented “I just couldn’t understand why such a nice girl would paint such wild pictures.” It may sound like he didn’t approve, but her husband (William Zorach) loved the way she stood out from a crowd. While she settled her “wild” painting side and became more focused on her family, she was titled president to the New York Society of Women Artists. Throughout her life Zorach experimented in all kinds of art media - even making clothes. You can certainly tell the different influences and evolution of her works. Because of this she received mixed criticism throughout her artistic years, yet her works are remembered today.

Above: Death of a Miner, 1930, by Marguerite Zorach (1887-1968).

Pan Yuliang (1899-1977)

Truly a woman to differ from the mainstream (and possibly my favourite on this list). Pan Yuliang is considered China’s “first woman in the country to paint in the Western style.” Unlike many of the woman included in this list, Yuliang did not come from a family of prominence. Just at the age of 14, she was sold by her uncle to a brothel and forced into prostitution. In an amazing turn of events, however, she was noticed by a kind wealthy man who brought her freedom. Becoming his second wife and adopting his last name, he sponsored her education and allowed her artistic abilities to flourish. Because of her talent, fast learning, and hard work, she was accepted in not only the Shanghai Art School, but also numerous schools in Europe. This even included Italy’s Roman Royal Art Academy. Pan Yuliang wasn’t particularly loved by all in China, however. Her works caused some outrage in her home country, and she eventually settled in France, where her paintings were more appreciated.

Above: Detail of Self-portrait, 1936, by Pan Yuliang (1899-1977).

Aleksandra Ekster (1882-1949)

Another abstract woman to appreciate, Russian painter Aleksandra Ekster uniquely used her skills for design purposes. Because of her extraordinary designs, she was required to work in numerous fabulous cities, from places in her home country of Russia, to the romantic Paris, France. Thanks to her prominent and wealthy family, Ekster was free to study art formally, later graduating from Kiev Art School. Her life was the ultimate art fantasy, as she organised meetings at her studio for Russia’s “intellectual elite.” This included artists, writers, and poets. While she never stuck with just one movement, but varied in many revolutionary avant-garde art movements of her time, her style is completely unique and consistent. She is known distinctly for her fashion designs, which were not only completely wearable, but also very memorable.

Above: Costume design for Romeo and Juliette, 1921, by Aleksandra Ekster (1882-1949).

you know what would’ve been, like… super cool to see in su? (i’m sorry for clogging the tag btw, i just have a lot of thoughts.)

the crystal gems becoming the symbols of a new gem revolution.

they’re spoken of only in whispers. no one mentions them in public. but everyone knows of them. if they have to be mentioned, it’s in a disdainful, angry tone. but oh, in private, it’s a different story.

they speak of the rose quartz whose love for all things was so strong that she faced down a diamond and won. (the lesson = “the diamonds are not invincible. they are not perfect. they are not gods.”)

they speak of the pearl who took up arms and proved she was as strong as any quartz, regardless of what she was. (the lesson = “we are not defined by our gems.”)

they speak of the garnet, the first fusion, impossibly strong and loving, who should not have existed but did. (the lesson = “the lines between us are not that thick. we are not so different from each other.”)

they speak of the bismuth who made weapons instead of buildings and who equipped a deadly army. (the lesson = “even the talents you have because of your gem can be put to any use.”)

they speak of the last amethyst of earth, who would never know anything but freedom, but who might come to them, someday. (the lesson = “one day, we can all be as free as the last amethyst.”)

and the crystal gems learn of this. garnet realises how much she matters to so many gems out there. her mere existence is the proof that the diamonds are wrong. pearl sees a legion of pearls who are just waiting to take up the sword alongside her, who refuse to be docile captives. amethyst realises that she herself is HOPE. that for an entire revolutionary movement she is proof that things can be better.

because how much would that mean to amethyst? she has a very low opinion of herself, but just by living as herself she’s become the image of hope for an entire species. she meets the revolutionaries on homeworld, starting with the famethyst, and realises… holy shit?? these people don’t even KNOW her but they love her BECAUSE she’s her. and she tells them a bit about life on earth because they’re curious, and she decides - she’s gonna keep being hope. she’s gonna keep fighting and being herself.

after the crystal gems return, word gets out.

they speak now of the peridot who defied yellow diamond and insulted her to her face, choosing life over duty. (the lesson = “change is coming. more understand the truth every day.”)

and they speak of the hybrid, a being neither gem nor human but somehow greater than both, a bridge between two worlds. (the lesson = “we are not so different from them, either. they can be anything. so can we.”)

and the crystal gems make them a promise - “we thought we were alone, that we couldn’t take the fight further, not after our armies were destroyed… but we have hope now, and we’re coming back for you.”

(the lesson = “the revolution is about to begin.”)

open.spotify.com
Songs of Freedom, a playlist by clubgumbo on Spotify
A playlist featuring Vladdy Iskhakov, Tom Paxton, Chumbawamba, and others

“No revolutionary movement is complete without its poetical expression. If such a movement has caught hold of the imagination of the masses they will seek a vent in song for the aspirations, the fears and the hopes, the loves and the hatreds engendered by the struggle. Until the movement is marked by the joyous, defiant, singing of revolutionary songs, it lacks one of the most distinctive marks of a popular revolutionary movement, it is the dogma of a few, and not the faith of the multitude.” - James Connolly

A collection of songs of freedom, labor, and rebellion, for your listening pleasure. Feel free to suggest songs you think should be added.

2

In the oft-cited campfire scene near the end, Wyatt tells Billy, “We blew it.” That line has been taken as an indictment of the American counterculture, which, like so many protean revolutionary movements, started self-destructing once it gained enough power and prominence to effect real change. One can read it that way. But the line strikes me also as a more personal sort of confession, an admission that they have ultimately succumbed and bought into their own outlaw version of the capitalist rat race—the idea that a man is not a true success unless he has accumulated enough money to stop working and take it easy. 

Easy Rider: Wild at Heart

Assata Shakur once said: if ever there was a decision between armed struggle and social programs (like free grocery programs, free health and education programs, free communal/local crime prevention programs etc), a revolutionary movement should always choose the social program approach.

Social programs represent an experimental view of the world we all strive for whereas an armed insurrection in the immediate present wouldn’t.

This isn’t to say that violence is completely barred – especially in terms of action and self defense against fascists, criminals, injustice, oppression, etc – in the mean time; only that a revolutionary movement shouldn’t put all of its efforts being armed to the teeth, ready to mobilize, and start destroying the state and capitalism at the drop of a hat when they can spend their time investing in social projects for the people’s immediate benefit while spreading ideals, goals, and principles for now and the future.

Armed struggle is an inescapable consequence for any revolutionary movement, however the result would be always be failure if the people don’t know what they’re fighting for and if they solely rely on the well-read militants for deciding what’s right and wrong.

A small movement that can’t defend itself but can understand itself is a seed that can grow; but a movement that can defend itself with no self understanding is a hollow shell.

This is basically a huge list of books. Summer is already over, but you can read these during any free time you have.

Fluent Forever by Gabriel Wyner

“The ultimate rapid language-learning guide!…At thirty years old, Gabriel Wyner speaks six languages fluently.  He didn’t learn them in school – who does? – rather, he learned them in the past few years, working on his own and practicing on the subway, using simple techniques and free online resources. In Fluent Forever Wyner reveals what he’s discovered.”

Moonwalking With Einstein by Joshua Foer

“Moonwalking with Einstein recounts Joshua Foer’s yearlong quest to improve his memory under the tutelage of top “mental athletes.” He draws on cutting-edge research, a surprising cultural history of remembering, and venerable tricks of the mentalist’s trade to transform our understanding of human memory.”

What If? by Randall Munroe

“Serious scientific answers to absurd hypothetical answers.” The humor and information in this book reignited my interest in science after a tiring school year.

The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Maria Kondo

“This international bestseller featuring Tokyo’s newest lifestyle phenomenon will help you clear your clutter and enjoy the unique magic of a tidy home—and the calm, motivated mindset it can inspire.”

How to Become a Straight-A Student by Cal Newport

“Real straight-A students don’t study harder–they study smarter… "How to Become a Straight-A Student” reveals for the first time the proven study secrets of real straight-A students across the country and weaves them into a simple, practical system that anyone can master.“ 

Make It Stick by Peter C. Brown, Henry L. Roediger III, Mark A. McDaniel

“Drawing on recent discoveries in cognitive psychology and other disciplines, the authors offer concrete techniques for becoming more productive learners.“

A Mind For Numbers by Barbara Oakley

“ Whether you are a student struggling to fulfill a math or science requirement, or you are embarking on a career change that requires a higher level of math competency, A Mind for Number soffers the tools you need to get a better grasp of that intimidating but inescapable field.“

The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp

“Creativity is not a gift from the gods, says Twyla Tharp, bestowed by some divine and mystical spark. It is the product of preparation and effort, and it’s within reach of everyone who wants to achieve it.” 

Flow by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

“Remember the last time that you were so focused, so motivated that you felt at the absolute top of your form – alert, energized and free of self-consciousness? Chances are you were experiencing flow – an almost euphoric state of concentration and complete involvement.”

The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

“The key to exercising regularly, losing weight, raising exceptional children, becoming more productive, building revolutionary companies and social movements, and achieving success is understanding how habits work.”

America’s immigrant anarchist communities were intimately tied to labor and revolutionary struggles in members’ countries of origin and forged links to radical networks spanning both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. The Lower East Side’s Yiddish anarchists maintained close contact with the revolutionary movement in Russia as well as London’s Jewish anarchists, and their reach soon spread. By the first decade of the twentieth century, the geography of Yiddish anarchism extended into Canada, Argentina, France, Germany, Austria-Hungary, Egypt, South Africa, and the Ottoman Empire. Philip Josephs, a Latvian Jewish anarchist radicalized in Glasgow, even founded New Zealand’s first anarchist group in 1913.

[…]

New York’s [Jewish] anarchists also helped introduce anarchism to Eastern Europe. Beginning in the 1890s, Yiddish and Russian anarchist publications from the United States and London were regularly smuggled into the Pale of Settlement, and in the textile center of Bialystok, where [Saul] Yanovsky had attended school, his pamphlet Der olef beys fun anarkhizmus became a local favorite. When [Emma] Goldman traveled through Kiev in 1920, she even discovered copies of Mother Earth, which she “was sure … had never been sent to Russia” but had been forwarded to a local anarchist by a brother living in the United States. In the spring of 1903, Jewish revolutionaries in Bialystok broke with the General Jewish Labor Bund and the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party and formed Russia’s first self-avowed anarchist group.

Kenyon Zimmer, Immigrants Against the State

‘U.S. Get Out Of Vietnam Now!! Year of Solidarity with Vietnam / October 8-11’, Sponsored by the Black Panther Party, Young Lords Organization, and Students for a Democratic Society / Revolutionary Youth Movement, Chicago, 1969.

Info re: Musical

@pinkwarriorneedsfoodbadly asked if this was the musical I meant on the donation post, and I answered there, but I think this should also be a post of its own so people don’t have to reblog that big long thing.

So again, here’s that musical link. Pretty painful quality, no?

And this is how I answered them:

Haha, yep, that sure is the one! We can’t make promises as to the quality of whatever’s on the blu-ray, but that youtube video is a VHS copy of a copy of a copy and whatever is on the bluray release will almost definitely be better quality. Also the descriptions we’ve been given imply that there is at the very least information about the second and third musical, which none of us have ever found recordings of, just a rumor about Anthy machine gunning down zombies. We’ve even had people ask the distribution companies for copies, and they’ve been refused. So a lot of this is up in the air– we don’t know what this is and we won’t know until we have it, but at the very least it will definitely be better than what we have now.

Oh, and it’s worth mentioning that we will make sure there are softsubs with the musical. So if anyone’s worried that we’re going to have the musical but no way of understanding it, that won’t be a problem. Gio’s already transcribing what she can and we know how to make srt files.

Flamboyant Lavender Duelist is my favorite character from the musical :3 I would love to see someone cosplay her someday, and the only way that’s ever going to happen is if we get this thing. Because of the quality I can’t even tell anymore if Flamboyant Lavender Duelist is Lavender or not– she’s an extra, so she takes part in all (?) the dance numbers, but the best view of her is here, near the end:

That’s about the 56:45 minute mark. The character ended up being nicknamed “Flamboyant Lavender Duelist” way back when because she’s clearly not a character in the series, and the musical uses roses wrapped around the extras to denote that they’re not speaking parts. Not to mention Lavender’s sweet dance moves! I think she’s adorable, and that is literally the one character I’ve always wanted to see fanart of :3

So yeah, if anyone wants to find out whether Lavender really is Lavender after all, pitch in! Even five bucks is a big help <3

  • Leftists: We should support international revolutionary movements against the anticommunist military interventions of the bourgeois nations.
  • Me: I 100% agree.
  • Also Leftists: The Kurdish revolutionaries, anarchist and Leninist, are American backed reactionaries attempting to subvert the revolutionary potential of Assad's government. We should support Assad and ISIS in their glorious battle against American imperialism instead. Supporting socialist revolutionaries fighting for national self-determination is not socialist at all. Real socialists support reactionary religious movements.
  • Me again: uhh what

It might at first seem attractive to say things like “Marxism can’t explain everything and although it is useful in its particular domain it’s not enough to explain the experiences of xyz, etc.”—but there’s a few things that people forget or don’t realize when they say that.

First, people mistake Marxism for a specific set of conclusions. When we realize that certain issues like racial or national oppression cannot be strictly analyzed through the lens of some pre-existing categories within the Marxist “canon,” we may be tempted to say that Marxism has reached its limit here. I must insist in contrast that, while i certainly feel many of the conclusions typically associated with Marxism are correct, all of these conclusions could actually be wrong and Marxism would still be “true” in the sense that it is most fundamentally a revolutionary way of approaching problems and enacting social change

Second, what is particularly insidious about the idea that Marxism “doesn’t apply” to this or that is the broader implication—which is quite consistent with postmodern theory in general—that different “domains” of life require us to use different approaches, different methodologies, different systems, etc. Wittgenstein, for example, was one of the people who most rigorously argued this, and he held that different domains of life were playing different “language games” which each had their own logic. One conclusion that follows from this is that no domain of social life is really poised to evaluate the validity of the others or appeal to universal truths. This can seem like a compelling line of reasoning, especially since it aligns with the dominant ideology of late capitalism. But it begins to fall apart when one realizes that, to even be able to distinguish where different domains of social life lie and what separates them requires a “global” logic by which you make the distinctions. Proponents of the notion that there can only be “local” theoretical and political systems tailored to the specific conditions of different “domains” do not at all escape appealing to universals; they simply leave the universal principles upon which they base their conclusion completely unsaid, which i feel is extremely dangerous. At least with the liberal humanists, although they simply assert universality from on-high and base their notion on the most vague of abstractions, you know what their assumptions are.

So the question is, what do you hold to be universal? Because without universality, the notion of specificity literally has no meaning.

What do i think? Well, i think Marxism as a theoretical and political practice does have boundaries, but it is able to evaluate where its own boundaries lie utilizing certain principles which are universal. To be precise materialist dialectics contain statements about the very nature of existence which are of necessity global. The fact that materialist dialectics are the product of a concrete practice—namely, taking the standpoint of proletariat in the realm of theory—does not jeopardize their universal “reach.” In fact, i would say that the proletariat, a force which occurs at the point where the various contradictions of society fuse, is particularly poised to access the universal.

Further, the boundaries of Marxism as assessed under the framework of materialist dialectics are larger than many people assume. Remember that Marx does not simply presuppose social class and then analyze society through that lens. Marxism is ultimately interested in the social formation as a whole and in particular in the transformation of that social whole. Marx arrives at the concept of social class as a result (not as the point of departure!) of the study of the social formation in its entirety (which is also why he really only began to concretely articulate the concept of class near the end of his life). So, Marxism is immediately relevant whenever we are talking about the revolutionary transformation of social life. And i am convinced that it remains the best tool for catalyzing revolutionary change there is. After all, it is not a coincidence that the most successful revolutionary movements around the globe have either been explicitly communist or have at least tried to appropriate certain elements of Marxism to suit their purposes.

Long story short, Marxism as a whole “package” may have limits, but they are broader than most people assume, and within Marxism there are universal principles, without which it is impossible to even distinguish what is specific.