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Submissions are now open for demos journal’s next issue focused on ‘precarity’. In collaboration with the Institute of Postcolonial Studies demos journals seeks to interrogate the colonial conditions that frame contemporary precarity.

IPCS members and friends interested in collaborating are invited to attend a submission workshop on Tuesday 15 September, 12:00 pm. 

Write to demos journal to register.

#11 Precarity 

“The more precarious you are, the more support you need. The more precarious you are, the less support you have. When we say something is precarious, we usually mean it is in a precarious position: if the vase on the mantelpiece were pushed, just a little bit, a little bit, it would topple right over. […] Living on the edge: a life lived as a fragile thread that keeps unraveling; when life becomes an effort to hold on to what keeps unraveling.” 

Sara AhmedLiving a Feminist Life.

“At the heart of the efforts at reframing the human is the growing realization of our precariousness as a species in the face of ecological threats and the outright possibility of human extinction opened up by climate change.” 

Achille MbembeDecolonizing Knowledge and the Question of the Archive.

Precarity describes both a universal condition of human life, and an historical condition of intensified displacement, uncertainty and exploitation. 

Precarity’s paradoxical force is to unite us in a condition of fragmentation and isolation; it is, as Lauren Berlant writes, ‘a magnetising concept’ that is both universal and specific. Precarity reveals that contingency and vulnerability are not evenly distributed. For some, precarious are the conditions of life, work and health, for many others the very ground is precarious. Does the recognition of shared precarity produce an emancipatory political project, or hollow out the possibilities of unifying people?

Submission details for demos journal.

demos journal is a volunteer-run progressive journal for emerging writers based on Ngunnawal and Ngambri land (Canberra).

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