Authoritarianism shape-shifts, mutates. Leftists inside and outside the US have long opposed the false Americanist and Eurocentric binary that divides the world between so-called Western democracies and third world dictatorships or regimes. The election of an overtly racist, xenophobic, and authoritarian American president is yet another illustration of the hypocrisy of this binary. It also continues to expose the hypocrisy of those who use this false binary to stoke populist nationalism and prop up their own oppressive governments. Behind the facade of the nation-state, capital-induced authoritarianism is its own independent corporation with franchises selling militarism, austerity and surveillance across the globe.
This call seeks to respond to these profit-driven re-alignments. It aims to broaden our rage and deepen our desire for liberation by facilitating an exchange in which the revolutionary energies of transnational decolonial thought and poetics—which has a long and rich history, especially outside the US—can be further shared, placed in dialogue, and amplified. This is a global call to all writers, thinkers, readers, intellectuals, activists, artists, and resisters to send us texts, in any language, that attest to contemporary struggles against authoritarianism, as well as its intricate entanglements with heteropatriarchy, racial oppression, disaster capitalism, white supremacy, and the violence wrought by settler colonial nations occupying first and sovereign nation land. Until everyone is free, no one is.
We are specifically interested in short 1-2 page texts that:
- track the emotional and bodily impact (including generational trauma) of government-sponsored oppression, and/or
- offer alternative narratives of resistance and resilience, and/or
- decenter US and Western exceptionalist narratives, and/or
- identify oppressive forces beyond conventional symbols of authoritarianism (dictators, tyrants, etc.)
Poems, lists, personal narratives, diary entries, stories, observational reports, instructional guides—we welcome all languages in any form or genre, and selected texts will be translated across multiple languages, with English seen as one language among many. You can send or recommend texts without a translation (and translations will be commissioned), or texts accompanied by your own or other translations (and we will add languages).
Selected material will be circulated via posters, pamphlets, and a participating consortium of online internationalist translation-focused magazines. Please share, post, re-post, forward, and circulate this call. Submissions can be sent to: WeTransist@gmail.com. Please include in your submission: 1) a brief description of why submitted text or translation is relevant to this call and 2) what other languages and contexts might be most relevant to this text/submission. All submissions considered on a rolling basis. We translate for geopolitical solidarity and revolutionary love.