We are writing to update you on the 2020 Montreal Anarchist Bookfair. As everyone is more than aware, the global pandemic has resulted in the postponement or cancellation of large gatherings, and many upcoming anarchist bookfairs worldwide (from Europe to Aotearoa and beyond) have been forced to call off their events. Our collective has yet to make a decision. It is clear to us, however, that if we organize a gathering on the weekend of May 16 and 17, it will look significantly different from what the bookfair has been for the past twenty years.
The Montreal Anarchist Bookfair, the largest on Turtle Island, has long been a moment for us to come together as anarchists to celebrate and share the multitude of ways in which we are inspired by this beautiful idea along with the practices that stem from it. Our hope, then, is to somehow still be able to mark this crucial occasion, and in a way that offers us the social and emotional connections that are threatened right now. We’d also like to see the Montreal Anarchist Bookfair, even if in a modest way, assert that anarchism and its ever-more relevant forms of freedom are still here. We see this as a moment for us to envision how to come together to educate, organize, and agitate for the world we want to see, instead of going back to “normal” after COVID-19.
That’s going to take a lot of creativity! So we’re inviting you to share imaginative ideas with us. How can we take or make, and then share, space to be together? Are there novel ways to dialogue about ideas, play, grieve, make art and music, offer care, show solidarity, dance, and so on, that remind ourselves we’re still here, we’re still strong–ways that might allow some of us to gather at a “safe” distance in person in Montreal and/or others to engage in highly participatory long-distance ways, including physically in their own locales at the same time?
PLEASE EMAIL US YOUR CREATIVE SUGGESTIONS BY OR BEFORE APRIL 10. Our deadline for making a final decision is April 15. We’re grateful for your help!
Below you’ll find two announcements related to keeping us connected. In the meantime, take good care of yourselves, and take good care of each other.