“________ Is All We Got” NYCoRE’s 8th Annual Conference: Call for Proposals
In the unveiling and wake of the current (and past) administration, enduring political climate and ongoing state-sanctioned violence across our nation, there are individuals for whom this white supremacist nation-state was “new” news to them, while for many of us it is a reality we intimately know––have known all along. In fact, Black science fiction writer Octavia Butler imagined a
version of our current reality in her dystopian novels Parable of the Sower and Parable of the Talents.
Rather than grieve in what to some is the “newness” of the depth and strength of White Supremacy, like Chance the Rapper, people of color were reminded what we have known all along: we are literally all we got.
“This is all we got
Isn‘t this all we got?
So we might as well give it all we got.”
––Chance the Rapper, “All We Got”
So what is the ____ of all you got?
NYCoRE’s 8th Annual Conference’s Call for Proposals invites you to critically reflect, survey assess, and explore this and other questions in your current personal, political, professional and organizing work(s). Not necessarily creating new things for the sake of creation, but rather doing better
with what we already have and do. As Butler reminds us, the importance of evolving and changing for the purposes of evolving and changing:
“All that you touch
All that you Change
The only lasting truth
Is Change. God
––from Earthseed: The Books of the Living in Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower
How can surveying, assessing and investigating what we currently do lead us to (re)mapping, (re)imagining and (re)creating new futures? How can conferences, activist and organizing spaces, like NYCoRE’s Annual Conference, hold space for skills sharing, networking, and community building that leads to movement building? What would real solidarity look like––in real, practical and tangible ways on the ground?
These and other questions are offered in the spirit of what Butler’s third Parable novel, which was tentatively titled Parable of the Trickster, and was said to have focused on the community’s struggle to survive on a new planet.
We close this invitation to submit a proposal echoing the urgency found in the words of Chicana feminist Gloria Anzaldua’s seminal letter/essay/speech/call-to-action: “Speaking in Tongues: A Letter to
3rd World Women Writers”:
Write with your eyes like painters, with your ears like musicians, with your feet like dancers. You are the truthsayer with quill and torch. Write with your tongues of fire. Don’t let the pen banish you from yourself. Don’t let the ink coagulate in your pens. Don’t let the censor snuff out the spark, nor the gags muffle your voice. Put your shit on the paper.
We are not reconciled to the oppressors who whet their howl on our grief. We are not reconciled. Find the muse within you. The voice that lies buried under you, dig it up. Do not fake it, try to sell
it for a handclap or your name in print.
––New York Collective of Radical Educators (NYCoRE)
For NYCoRE’s 2018 conference, we are seeking proposals for workshops that speak to the theme of “________ is All We Got.” We invite proposals of relevance to educators in varied settings that focus on a diverse range of topics. Relevant political critiques are welcomed, as are curricular ideas, classroom strategies, presentations on community work, and other ideas for inspiring practice. Some possible workshop themes to consider are: critical race theory, gender and sexuality in the classroom, spaces for organizing and convening with similar justice-centered organizations, Participatory Action Research (PAR) youth workshops, workshops on art and identity for young people and youth, resisting the current administration, etc. We are also specifically seeking workshops that contribute to bridging the gap that often exists between educators and young people by bringing the voices of youth into workshop sessions. NYCoRE is offering the opportunity to propose an alternative workshop forum called an “Organizing Space.” An organizing space provides time for people/ groups that are organizing on shared issues (i.e. testing, social justice unionism) to come together to build solidarity and plans for actions. In order to be considered for an organizing space, a proposal must have at least two different groups or organizations as facilitators, a plan for session goals, and a description of how the time will be used.
We ask all submissions to review NYCoRE’s Points of Unity for alignment before submitting: http://www.nycore.org/nycore-info/points-of-unity/