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Author Archives: Blithe Riley

  1. Essay: The Film and Photo League by Martin Lucas

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    The Film and Photo League
    by Martin Lucas

    Workers Film and Photo League

    Images of Social Change

    If asked to think of images of the 1930s Great Depression, we think typically of still photos: stark black and white shots of the misery associated with being jobless in a society where this meant starvation and homelessness. We see soup kitchens with long lines of desperate men, migrant workers fleeing the Dustbowl with hopelessness in their eyes. We might even have some kind of memory of the New Deal, perhaps FDR with his cigarette in its long holder. But there is a missing image: the image of millions of unemployed and unorganized Americans who were actively seeking ways out of desperation within months of the 1929 crash.

    The 1930s in the US were a period of fervent and creative social upheaval. The country that emerged from that period some ten years later was in many ways an entirely different country, a nascent modern ‘welfare’ state instead of a laissez-faire one, and a society where people were able to conceive of themselves and their society in class terms, in national terms, and even in personal terms in ways completely different from previous periods.

    One of the key new forms that helped construct an image of the American people for itself — one of what film scholar Jonathan Kahana calls ‘cultural technologies’ that arose in this period along with pollsters, government surveys, and photographic essays — was the documentary film. Although documentary has its origins in the Soviet Union and Great Britain, where government-supported non-fiction film was deployed to help define and create the modern state, in its American form the social documentary was initially conceived of as a radical tool, even revolutionary in relation to any state or government.

    The Passaic Textile Strike, the Workers International Relief, and the Birth of the Film and Photo League

    The work of the Film and Photo League (FPL), a small group whose short life extended from 1930 to 1937, was designed more to help make history than to record it.   Their work framed many of the key features of American documentary. The FPL helped define the dynamism of the American working class through its social concern, its focus on ‘the voice of the people’, and its potential militancy. Today this work is almost lost: almost never seen, and rarely discussed at any length.

    My own introduction to the FPL and its work was through one of its original members, Leo Hurwitz, whose son Tom taught at New York University in the late 1970s when I was a student in the film school. Leo showed us a series of films from both the Film and Photo League and from the Pioneer Film group that emerged from it. It was a revelation. I knew about Eisenstein, I knew about Dziga Vertov, but this was our own homegrown radical tradition, buried under the brooding legacy of the McCarthy era.

    These films show the beginnings of the industrial labor movement: a society where people on the street were ready to fight brutal repression and stand for a better world; where the modern strike came into its own in Detroit, in New York, and in San Francisco. In FPL material from the mass demonstrations of that era we watch striking workers face shotguns and automatic weapons. In the case of the Bonus Marchers, we even see mounted cavalry slashing Army veterans with sabers under the command of General McArthur and within sight of the Washington Monument.

    What are the origins of this small group that redefined documentary? One origin lies in the Cultural Front politics of the Communist Party (CP) in the period leading up to the Depression.

    The Passaic Textile Strike of 1926 involved over 15,000 woolen workers in the Passaic area, who took part in the first Communist-led strike in the United States. In order to develop support for the striking workers, the Workers International Relief (WIR), a Communist Party front organization whose job was to support labor struggles around the world, funded the creation of a film.

    The WIR had been founded in 1921 to help garner international help for Soviet famine relief; it was created by a German Communist with a flair for publicity, Willi Muenzenberg, who met with Lenin in Moscow and was given funding to set up the group. The New Economic Program of 1921 eased Soviet famine, and the WIR changed its mandate to include creating propaganda and supporting workers during strikes; it supported workers from British coal fields to Chinese factories. Significantly, the WIR also distributed Soviet films globally. In the Weimar period the German government made it illegal to show foreign films, so WIR moved the film part of its operation to Vienna. They produced Brecht’s only film, Kuhle Wampe, among other projects.

    The seven-reel silent movie funded by the WIR in support of the Passaic Textile Strike was an organizing tool used extensively at meetings around the country and was a hit. Although it had a fictional storyline, audiences found the documentary footage compelling. As Phillip Foner notes, “Audiences were deeply moved by the film, especially by the scenes showing the atrocious police brutality against the strikers, including girl pickets and even the children of the strikers.” The strike was able to continue for a year to a successful conclusion. When the US economy collapsed in 1929, the WIR supported the creation of the FPL to continue this type of media support for the labor movement.

    The 1932 rise of Hitler caused the WIR to relocate to Paris, where it mainly worked to support the Spanish revolution. By 1935 it was disbanded. Reading between the lines it seems that Stalin was uninterested in having an independent organization create Communist propaganda. Muenzenberg was found dead in a field in France, killed either by the Gestapo or the KGB. Shortly after this the FPL disbanded, its members going on to form new groups such as Nykino and Pioneer films.

    The Work and Workers of the Film and Photo League

    The FPL spent its short life showing footage of workers to other workers: workers out of work, workers on strike, workers fighting scabs. I say “footage” because these were often compilations rather than films shown as full stories, and in fact there was little focus on films as discreet products. With titles like “Unemployment Special, 1931”, “Detroit Workers News Special – Ford Massacre”, and “The National Hunger March 1931”, they were an important information source for workers who lived in a media vacuum.

    The National Hunger March 1931

    As FPL member Tom Brandon put it, “In the early 30s the media were distorting, blurring, or avoiding the problems of unemployment and hunger. Not only the media but the US government and the American Federation of Labor, until 1932, issued no statistics on unemployment, but in 1929, 1930, and early 1931, there were no official statistics given out on how many were unemployed.”

    In contradistinction to this paucity of information from the mainstream media, and in a country with 16 million unemployed in 1931, the reality was evident to all even without evidence in mass media. The Left offered an outpouring of cultural production: magazines such as Masses, New Masses, New Theater, etc. As Tom Brandon put it:

     “It was part of the big upsurge in the early Thirties when the middle-class professionals, artists, writers and other intellectuals, task forces, flying squadrons. The Theodore Dreiser Committee went to the Pennsylvania coal mines, Waldo Frank went to Kentucky with a delegation, Malcolm Cowley I think was arrested in West Virginia, Sherwood Anderson, Charles R. Wallser and many others were there, right in it. Film and Photo League people were part of these committees and were called in because there was always a possibility of sending camera crews along.”

    The end results of these efforts added up to impressive output from what never seemed to be a very large group: about 16 issues of the Workers Newsreel, one longer documentary, and about 20 short documentary reports. But for a group whose goals were as much political as filmic, the distribution stands out as much as the production. Although one or two sympathetic cinemas in New York would screen these films, “distribution” generally meant a couple of FPL members going to a strike headquarters with a projector. The films in fact were silent, which meant the equipment was relatively simple. They were also typically shown paired up with a Soviet film such as Potemkin, or else with locally shot material that was often taken back to New York and incorporated into the next film.

    FPL member Leo Seltzer emphasized the relation between subject and audience: “We showed our films in meeting halls and at strike headquarters, often to the same people we had photographed at demonstrations and on picket lines.” Steve Krinsky characterizes how the effort took FPL members nationwide.

    “Tom Brandon, who coordinated much of the League’s distribution efforts, reported that in 1934 they had established about 90 towns in the Dakotas alone where FPL newsreels were shown along with films like ‘Potemkin’ and other radical classics. ‘The farmers eat it up,’ he wrote. ‘They flock in from miles around, and see the pictures in barns, schools, town halls; once even a big funeral parlor loaned by a friendly mortician.”

     As Krinsky also notes the documentarians of the FPL were not operating in a vacuum, but rather in a rich environment of radical culture where people were deeply concerned with the relationship of culture to the struggle of workers, and also very concerned about their own roles as intellectuals.

     “These debates were an important part of the development of the medium, particularly the evolution of the social documentary. The starting point of these debates, many of which were carried on in the pages of Experimental cinema (edited by FPL members Dave Platt and Lewis Jacobs), in New Theater and Film, and later in Filmfront, the League’s own publication, was the challenge of the Hollywood film.”

    Who were the League members? They varied a lot. Some were progressive intellectuals: Sam Brody was the film critic for the Daily Worker. Leo Hurwitz was a young New York would-be filmmaker who had gone to Harvard on a scholarship. Lester Balog, who shot the Passaic film, dropped out of Cooper Union. Joseph Hudyma was an unemployed autoworker in Detroit before joining the FPL. Others were employees (or former employees) of the companies that produced the commercial newsreels shown before features in movie houses.

    The FPL members didn’t see themselves as observers, and this perhaps is what gives the material they shot such immediacy even today. They were activists, and were identified as such by the police and arrested along with demonstrators as was Leo Seltzer who appears briefly being hauled off to the paddy wagon in “Unemployment Special’. The footage is dynamic for this reason as well. The long shot is rare, but we see instead a closeup of a black striker taking the stick he’s being hit with by a scab and whacking back, or the union spokeswoman being hustled into a paddy wagon. It cannot be stressed too much how these images of workers in struggle stood out in the American media landscape of the Depression.

    Starting with the unemployed marches and Bonus Marches of the early 1930s, basic goals of unemployment insurance and a federal jobs program were achieved with the election of Roosevelt. And by the mid-thirties the American working class was effectively organizing a labor movement in the industrial sectors ignored by older craft unionism. 1934 alone saw General Strikes in Minneapolis and San Francisco, and a Textile Workers strike across most of the south involving some 400,000 workers. Those workers were brutally repressed, often by National Guard units. Strikers were shot down with machine guns in Woonsocket, RI, and put into leftover WWI POW camps in Georgia. But very often the labor organizations they fought to create survived.

    The San Francisco FPL covered the San Francisco General Strike, and the headquarters of the FPL were subsequently burned. Lester Balog, a New York FPL member who had moved to the West Coast to set up a branch there, was jailed and fined. The films were identified as subversive material and destroyed.

    The Legacy of the Film and Photo League

    Today, it is very difficult to find films created by the Film and Photo League. Tom Brandon and Leo Seltzer put one compilation together. Copies of that film can be found at a few places, including the Museum of Modern Art. The single production of the San Francisco FPL is at the Walter Reuther Library. In print, the FPL is similarly hard to find. Several articles were written in the 1970s when there was a resurgence of interest in radical documentary, and a few since. This is all that remains of the FPL.

    However, the members themselves went on to leave a legacy. Spinoffs from the FPL — Nykino and Pioneer films — continued to produce into the mid-1940s. The Works Progress Administration (WPA) era offered a new form of state-sponsored documentary, and FPL members provided the crew for Pare Lorenz’s classic “The Plow that Broke the Plains.” They also provided inspiration for others. The famous documentary photographer Dorothea Lange got her start when she abandoned portrait photography to document the SF General Strike in 1934.

    A committed cultural movement that helps create resistance by framing it is still an important notion. As Jonathan Kahana notes, “the idea of a cultural technology whose public was also its product can compare with the advent of print where the text, e.g. Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, literally constitute the people.” And that is perhaps one of the most intriguing conundrums. Philosophers of representation will ask whether it is possible to be what you are representing. For the members of the Film and Photo League, their vision of the working class was both very real and highly visionary, and it very much helped to create the movement it showed to itself.



    Russell Campbell “The Film and Photo League: Radical Cinema in the 1930s”

    Jump Cut, no. 14, 1977, pp. 23-25

    Russell Campbell “Film and Photo League Bibliography”
    Jump Cut, no. 14, 1977, pp. 32-33

    Brad Chisholm “Film and Photo League: Exhibition Strategies”
    Jump Cut, no. 37, July 1992, pp. 110-114

    Jonathan Kahana Intelligence Work: The Politics of American Documentary (New York, Columbia University Press, 2008.)

    Steve Krinsky “Camera as Weapon” unpublished Ph.D. thesis

    Carla Leshne “The Film and Photo League of San Francisco” Film History: An International Journal – Volume 18, Number 4, 2006, pp. 361–373

    Fred Sweet, Eugene Rosow, Allan Francovich and Tom Brandon “Pioneers: An Interview with Tom Brandon” Film Quarterly, Vol. 27, No. 1 (Autumn, 1973), pp. 12-24

    George Stoney, Judith Helfand and Susanne Rostock The Uprising of ’34 (1995)

    Martin Lucas is an artist, educator and media activist. His first film, Tighten Your Belts, Bite the Bullet(1980, New York Film Festival) produced with James Gaffney and Jonathan Miller, was a look at the costs and effects of the 1970s bankruptcy of New York City. As a founding member of the Paper Tiger Television Collective, Martin was one of the producers of The Gulf Crisis Television Project in 1991. His work in television news included the first TV exposé of the AIDS drug-pricing scandal for ZDF German Television.His media works looking at urban crisis and the militarization of culture including Earlier Incident, featured at the 2009 Niet Normaal Exhibition in Amsterdam and Treatment Plan featured at the 2011 Videoart.net Festival in New York. His work has been seen at locales including the Buena Vista Arts Center, San Francisco, the Eyebeam Art and Technology Center, New York, The Knitting Factory, The New York Film Festival and the Ars Electronica, Linz.

    Martin speaks regularly in the US and abroad on topics including media education, public art, video as a tool for social change, and documentary film. He has organized conferences on locative and other emerging media forms and development and has created digital media training programs in locales from Siberia to Southern Africa. Most recently Martin has worked with Story Workshop in Malawi, Southern Africa, helping to develop production around gender violence, food security, and AIDS awareness, production that included the full-length feature film Okoma Atani, a look at the impact of AIDS on the life of a Malawian village.

    Martin teaches video and new media production and theory in the Integrated Media Arts MFA Program of the Film and Media Studies Department at Hunter College, City University of New York. He has a BFA in film from New York University, and an MFA in Visual Art from the Vermont College of Fine Art.


  2. Documents from the Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp


    December 5, 2014 – March 1, 2015
    Opening: December 5, 2014

    Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp was a 19-year anti-nuclear protest and encampment at the U.S. Military Base at Greenham Common, Berkshire County, England. This exhibition and event series, organized as a mother/daughter collaboration between Susan Jahoda and Emma Jahoda-Brown, assembles accounts of the comings and goings and daily lives of a diverse group of women at Greenham primarily over a nine year period. Photographs, film, artifacts and sound are brought together to reveal a complex view of a largely invisible history.

    This project honors the visual work of Susan Kleckner and the extraordinary women of Greenham Common who transformed a space — otherwise claimed for militarism and colonialism – into a place of protest, agency, and exploration of feminist politics. Women traveled to Greenham Common from all over the world and supported the movement from their own geographic regions, marking it as the largest women’s campaign since the early twentieth century struggle for suffrage.

    Organized by Susan Jahoda and Emma Jahoda-Brown, with contributions by Rachel Mattson and Blithe Riley.

  3. Open House & Conversation about Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp

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    Saturday February 7
    Open House 2-4pm
    Conversation: 4-6PM

    Join us for an open house and conversation with women who spent time at Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp. Participants include Silvia Frederici, Nanna Gro Henningsen, Gwyn Kirk, Ann Snitow and Rae Street— who will share their experiences about how the occupation impacted their lives and politics.

    Participant Bios:

    Silvia Federici is a feminist activist, writer, and a teacher. In 1972 she was one of the co-founders of the International Feminist Collective, the organization that launched the international campaign for Wages For Housework (WFH). In the 1990s, after a period of teaching and research in Nigeria, she was active in the anti-globalization movement and the U.S. anti-death penalty movement. She is one of the co-founders of the Committee for Academic Freedom in Africa, an organization dedicated to generating support for the struggles of students and teachers in Africa against the structural adjustment of African economies and educational systems. From 1987 to 2005 she taught international studies, women studies, and political philosophy courses at Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY. All through these years she has written books and essays on philosophy and feminist theory, women’s history, education and culture, and more recently the worldwide struggle against capitalist globalization and for a feminist reconstruction of the commons.
    Nanna Gro Henningsen is a Danish visual artist and associate professor in Art- history and -theory at The Jutland Art Academy and Aarhus School of Architecture. Based in Copenhagen, she works with theater, performance, and visual arts.

    Nanna Gro Henningsen became a political activist at the age of 16, taking part in Greenpeace blockades against transports of raw uranium from Greenland to the Danish experimental nuclear plant Risoe. She also engaged in the local dockworkers strike, the squatter movements anti-gentrification battles in Copenhagen and in developing the local peace movement through reading circles, training groups in non-violent action After the Nordic Peace March to Paris in 1981, Nanna went to Greenham Common.

    Gwyn Kirk is a writer, teacher, and organizer involved in the Greenham movement in the 1980s: participating in direct actions at Greenham Common and in London, filming early actions, public speaking, fundraising, and organizing U.S. speaking tours for plaintiffs in the lawsuit, Greenham Women vs Reagan et al. She was a co-founder of the International Women’s Network Against Militarism in the 1990s with women from Japan, Okinawa, South Korea and the Philippines, as well as Women for Genuine Security, the US-based partner in this Network.

    Her co-authored work includes Greenham Women Everywhere; Women’s Lives: Multicultural Perspectives; and the independent documentary, Living Along the Fenceline. Her articles on feminism, militarism, and transnational feminist organizing have appeared in anthologies and journals including The Asia-Pacific Journal, Berkeley Women’s Law Journal, Foreign Policy in Focus, Frontiers, Peace Review, and Social Justice. She writes for popular audiences through activist publications and projects, including scripts for Fashioning Resistance to Militarism, a popular education project. www.gwynkirk.com

    Ann Snitow
    “A feminist activist and writer, I have combined these activities with being a university professor since 1969. It’s all connected: imagining and reading about change, being skeptical about the meaning of particular social changes, being part of change. What I wish for my students: action and criticism of the action taken, engagement and distance, and, finally, pleasure in this inside/outside life. My next book, The Feminism of Uncertainty, with a chapter on Greenham Common,  is forthcoming from Duke University Press, Fall, 2015.”

    Rae Street has been involved in anti-nuclear, anti-militarism and peace campaigning for more than three decades. She is a long time activist in CND UK (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, whose ‘logo’ is recognized as a peace symbol throughout the world. She was a ‘Greenham woman’ and toured the States in the late 80s to raise awareness of Cruise missiles whilst raising funds for Greenham Women Against Cruise Missiles. She worked also to bring peace and anti nuclear groups together between the UK and the USA in a People-to-People programme. While always having been keenly aware of making international links, at the same time, she has always taken an active part in peace activities in her home town of Rochdale, in the north of England, and for Greater Manchester and District CND.

    In 1999, she was a founder member of CADU (the Campaign Against Depleted Uranium Weapons) in the UK, established a national office in Manchester, UK, and has been Coordinator ever since. From its inception she and CADU have supported the International Coalition for a Ban on Uranium Weapons whose office is also in Manchester, UK.

    Over the years she has indeed been involved in all these serious weighty matters, but also had lots of fun and companionship working with her sister resisters. When she was young and rebellious her mother always thought as Rae got older she would ‘settle down’. She hasn’t.

  4. Film Screening: Along The Fenceline

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    Friday February 6, 7:30pm

    Film Synopsis (from the film website):
    Living Along the Fenceline, a ground breaking 65-minute documentary by award-winning filmmaker Lina Hoshino, tells the stories of seven women whose lives have been affected by the US military presence in their backyards. Their individual journeys of strength and courage represent the unheard stories of myriad communities across the globe that live alongside US bases and bear tragic hidden costs to their land, culture, and spirit.

    The film connects the stories of women from Texas, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, Guam, the Philippines, Korea, and Okinawa (Japan) and their efforts to create genuine security in their home communities. They take us into their homes, walk us through their neighborhoods, and introduce us to their communities. We see how military operations and bloated military budgets have affected their lives as we listen to their experiences and take in their surroundings.

    Although not considered war zones, these strategic locations are part of a global network of 1,000 US bases that allows the United States to go to war anytime, anywhere. These women are not four-star generals or White House strategists. Their expertise comes from living with the tragic hidden costs to life, health, culture, and the environment.

    Through the power of personal story this film also tells a wider story of the negative impacts of US bases on host communities. It shows the strength and creativity of women’s activism in challenging prevailing assumptions about military security. Living Along the Fenceline offers provocative insights and information for audiences to think about these contentious issues in new ways. It lifts up alternative ideas of peace and security, embedded in the work of grassroots women leaders who are acting on their visions and beliefs.

    Researcher and Screenwriter Gwyn Kirk will be present for the evening

  5. Exhibition Tour: Documents from Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp

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    Saturday January 17

    Join Documents from Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp exhibition organizers Susan Jahoda and Emma Jahoda-Brown for a tour of the show.

    About the Exhibition:

    Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp was a 19-year anti-nuclear protest and encampment at the U.S. Military Base at Greenham Common, Berkshire County, England. This exhibition and event series, organized as a mother/daughter collaboration between Susan Jahoda and Emma Jahoda-Brown, assembles accounts of the comings and goings and daily lives of a diverse group of women at Greenham primarily over a nine year period. Photographs, film, artifacts and sound are brought together to reveal a complex view of a largely invisible history.

    This project honors the visual work of Susan Kleckner and the extraordinary women of Greenham Common who transformed a space — otherwise claimed for militarism and colonialism – into a place of protest, agency, and exploration of feminist politics. Women traveled to Greenham Common from all over the world and supported the movement from their own geographic regions, marking it as the largest women’s campaign since the early twentieth century struggle for suffrage.

    On view December 5, 2014 – March 1, 2015.

    Organized by Susan Jahoda and Emma Jahoda-Brown, with contributions by Rachel Mattson and Blithe Riley.

  6. Resources on Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp

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    We’ve collected some  links to online resources about Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp.


    Welcome To Greenham

    Documentation: Greenham Common Peace Camps Songbooks, The Danish Peace Academy

    Marysial Lewandowska, Open Hearing


    Rebecca Johnson, “The Occupy Movement and the Women of Greenham Common”, Open
    Democracy, 12 December 2011, Web. <https://www.opendemocracy.net/5050/rebecca-johnson/occupy-movement-and-women-of-greenham-common>

    “The 1980’s Archived”, British Library, Social Sciences Blog, April 2013. Web. <http://britishlibrary.typepad.co.uk/socialscience/2013/04/the-1980s-archived.html>

    Gwyn Kirk, “Resource list: Greenham Common Women’s Peace Movement History”, <http://gwynkirk.com/resources/resource-list-gc>

    “Learning Sisterhood and After: An Oral History of the Women’s Liberation Movement”,  The British Library Board, Web. <http://www.bl.uk/learning/histcitizen/sisterhood/index.html>


    Part 1: The Greenham Challenge: Bringing Missiles to Trial

    Leslie McIntyre discusses how she became a Greenham Woman, and talks about how her
    experience at Greenham prepared her for another 14 years of protest.

  7. Serve the People: Gallery Tour

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    On December 10, 2013 IA was a packed with people excited to learn about the “Serve the People” show!

    Below is a video excerpt from the gallery tour with curator Ryan Wong, artist Tomie Arai, and photographer Corky Lee.

    Gallery Tour 2

    Gallery Tour 3Tomie Arai shows a photograph she used as source material for her art work.

    Gallery Tour 4Ryan Wong and Tomie Arai talk about Yellow Pearl.

    Gallery Tour 5

    Serve the People Gallery Tour

  8. Activista Happy Hour & Open House

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    Activista Happy Hour is a monthly gathering of social movement activists in NYC. We are excited to partner with Movement Space Project and CAAAV to co-host December’s gathering!

    For this happy hour, Interference Archive will be hosting a special open house from 5:30-7:30 pm, which will be followed by drinks at Halyards down the block. This is a great opportunity to check our space out, and to see IA’s latest exhibition “Serve the People: The Asian American Movement in New York.”

    Curated by Ryan Wong, “Serve the People” charts a history of Asian American activism, organizing, and cultural production in the 1970s. It is the first exhibition to focus on New York as a center of this national phenomenon. Through posters, leaflets, newspapers, film, and music, “Serve the People” shows how Asian American identity was shaped by reclaimed histories, revolutionary politics, feminist awareness, third worldism, and community organizing. The culture created by young activists and artists in the movement embodied their ideals, speaking to the excitement and urgency of the time. Read more here: 

    5:30-7:30 Interference Archive Open House.
    131 8th Street Brooklyn, NY 11215
    RSVP on Facebook!

    7pm on: Drinks at Halyards
    406 3rd Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215
    *** $4 Drink Specials on Carlsbad and Bk Brewery***

    Train: F or G to 4th Avenue and 9th Street.

    Sign Up for the Activista Happy Hour email list here.

  9. Guerrilla Girls Broadband

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    November 18, 2013

    Guerrilla Girls Broadband is a Band of Broads of all stripes who, challenge structures of power and privilege in the Digital Age. Our projects surface in Cyberspace and online interfaces as well as real-time interventions. Employing searing wit and humor our aesthetic approach is feminist and collective. Like all good super her@s we cloak our ordinary public personas and arrive on the scene as dead women artists – masked guerrilla girls – wielding the F word (feminism) to hold our public and cyber institutions accountable to women and youth across cultures and economic backgrounds who are otherwise left on the wrong side of the Digital Divide.

    Currently we concentrate our resources to MapAbortion, an online resource for tracking the legal debate and a people’s history of reproductive justice since Roe v. Wade, identifying abortion support and providers in the US, and a repository for women, providers, and activists to tell their story.

    MapAbortion was informed by an earlier public poster and bus shelter project, ‘Where to get an Abortion in the City of Buffalo’ and ‘The Advantages of No Choice at All’. In keeping with our legacy of ‘Advantages…’ posters, with dark humor ‘…No Choice at All’ calls attention to morbid impact of the contradictions between the law and public opinion, and insists upon highlighting the stark realities for women of all ages across the U.S. as we claim our reproductive freedom.

    Also of note is our ‘pick a dick’ poster, which allows you to rate male politicians by categories of misogyny, sexual abuse, and perversion of power. All of these posters are available for download on our website: guerrillagirlsbroadband.com

    For our presentation at the Interference Archive, Broads “Josephine Baker”, “Minnette De Silva” and with luck a few others such as “Pearl Primus”, and “Rokeya SakhawatHussain”, will talk about the collective process and the ongoing effort to build – and build support for – the MapAbortion website. We welcome your input!