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RCA talks

People need homes, give them keys! FocusE15 & Lola Olufemi in conversation with Thandi Loewenson and Dubravka Sekulić.

21 January 2021 | 6.30pm


Please join us for the fourth in this series, broadcast live from lockdown London.

Here in London, the pandemic continues to rage heightening already acutely felt pressures around just, equitable access to safe homes in the city. In the midst of this, we are joined by Focus E15 and writer and organiser Lola Olufemi for a timely and urgent conversation which will centre housing as a site of radical, feminist struggle.

Three members of the Focus E15 Campaign will speak on different aspects of the movement, born out of the collective response of a group of young mothers fighting eviction and funding cuts by Newham Council in London, demanding “social housing, not social cleansing!” Lola Olufemi will reflect on the campaign, situating this in relation to her groundbreaking work on grassroots feminist organising against state and structural violence and injustice. Katherine McKittrick draws our attention to the spatial dimensions of practices of subjugation and shows how the imaginative manoeuvres of people who refuse oppression offer respatialisations which confront injustice. The inventive, incisive and inspirational acts of Focus E15 and Lola Olufemi are exemplary of this struggle-work, building a world otherwise and bringing liberation into our homes.

All welcome, tell a friend to tell a friend...

British Sign Language interpretation available for this lecture. This is a public online event via Zoom webinar and will be recorded.

Co-Liberation: the RCA School of Architecture International Lecture Series 2020-21

‘As long as we are resisting we are free’ echoes the lingering battle-cry of the late Egyptian Marxist Samir Amin. For Amin, revolution was a process, a non-linear struggle forged in the long-now. This is revolution crafted in acts of resistance, in everyday opposition to an oppressive, profit-over-people logic which would seek to foreclose access, movement and imagination. This is revolution enacted through acts of freedom, through dangerous dreaming, alternative occupations and the construction of infinite, previously unthinkable possibilities in the face of enclosure. This is revolution as a home, a place of warmth, care, mutual aid, and solidarity across globally dispersed sites of interconnected struggle. This is a revolution that considers the days after the revolution as an integral part. It does not forget to think about those who will, after the revolution, as artist Mierle Laderman Ukeles reminds us, 'pick up the garbage on Monday morning.' 

This year’s series of lectures – under the theme Co-Liberation – draws these acts of resistance and freedom close and into dialogue, understanding that they operate both in time and space. We know that revolution is not a one time event and ask what unspent fuel remains from previous struggles to be reignited today? What can we learn from those who are on the front lines as we seek to imagine and build a more just, equitable world and how can we engage in constructing active forms of solidarity? We offer the International Lecture Series to all those who seek the warmth of a home of revolutionary thought today: from confronting the spatial instruments of racial capitalism, the violence of gender binaries, and the settler colonial underpinnings of the urban, to emancipatory Black re-constructions of the archive, the poetic, the performative and the sonic that reach back in time, grab hold of glowing embers of liberations gone-by and bring them to the fore, ready to be set alight with the strength of our collective breath, our desire to live and live free.

Upcoming Co-Liberation Events

February 4, 6.30pm GMT – DJ Lynée Denise & Luke de Noronha
February 18, 6.30pm GMT – Priyamvada Gopal & Sara Salem
March 11, 12.30pm GMT – Andong Lu & Biao Xiang
April 29, 6.30pm BST – Kathryn Yussoff & Ivy Monteiro
May 13, 6.30pm BST – Sónia Vaz Borges & Filipa César