Transformative Justice And/As Harm

front heart

Zine cover: broken heart fabric pin on red fabric

This is a zine I wrote about transformative justice in 2014 but have been shy to put it online until now.

If you are looking for a how-to or the answers to your questions, this isn’t it. How-to transformative justice guides do exist but I am very skeptical of them because there is no magic formula for this work. It also probably asks more questions that it answers. But I try to give a thoughtful critique of my own role in trying to do TJ work and my the ways that I have unintentionally caused harm while trying to create justice.

Also, this zine is really long and might be triggering to some people as it is mostly about sexual assault.

 

Click Here for Transformative Justice And/As Harm

Access: My computer died and I don’t have the original files. So, the one with the cover is a flat pdf and screen readers can’t read it. The other version doesn’t have a cover and the table of contents is obnoxious to read with a screen reader (sorry, I can’t figure out how to change it). But once you get to page 2, you are good to go.

Click here for Transformative Justice And/As Harm – screen reader version

Welcome to the New Site

This site started out as a zine (small independent publication) series which morphed into a website/blog and then spun off into a book – Disability Politics and Theory.

The website title is a riff on “if I can’t dance it ain’t my revolution” which is a common radical phrase which is commonly attributed to Emma Goldman. She never actually said this but it was similar to a really long thing that she said and it fit on a T-shirt.

Disabled people are actively excluded from radical politics. We are ignored and, on occasion, tokenized. Some people on the left consider us lumpen proletariat, some give us a seat at the table in a building with a broken elevator, but rarely are we included, valued, and respected.

You Don't Have to Stand Up to Fight Back! Standard wheelchair symbol with raised fist. Black on Pink.

You Don’t Have to Stand Up to Fight Back! Standard wheelchair symbol but the person has a raised fist. Black on Pink.

“If I can’t dance it ain’t my revolution” is as true today as it ever was. If you can’t dance, you aren’t allowed to participate equally in revolutionary struggle. If you dance cautiously because you are in pain, or “strangely” it isn’t your revolution. If you aren’t dancing because you have been forcibly restrained it isn’t your revolution. If you dance alone because you have been excluded from society because you have an intellectual disability, are psychiatrised, deaf or physically disabled it isn’t your revolution. If you don’t dance you aren’t allowed to participate equally in the struggle, it isn’t your revolution. If you don’t fight, if you don’t organize, it won’t be your revolution and changes implemented will not reflect the diverse needs and perspectives of disabled people.

We all dance in our own ways. We all fight in our own ways. We need to create the space for that to be recognized and we need to fight for change together.