People of Flour, Salt, and Water: Resonating with Zapatismo in Italy

Still from The New Dead End #17 by Chto Delat

After visiting Chiapas, Mexico in 2016, the Russian art collective Chto Delat found a new appreciation for the Zapatista’s approach to art and activism. They returned to St. Petersburg and began infusing their own long-established art practice with some of the philosophies of the Zapatista movement, resulting in an explosion of installations, films, and community organizing. The latest series on collects writing from the book When the Roots Start Moving alongside a feature documentary to present the art and ethos of both Chto Delat and the Zapatistas.

Still from the film People of Flour, Salt, and Water

Watch People of Flour, Salt, and Water: Join farmers, migrants, refugees, and artist/activists in the South of Italy as they process their stories and struggles through the lens of Zapatismo. Can the philosophies developed in Mexico be adapted to suit struggles halfway across the globe?

Illustration by Nikolay Oleynikov from “When the Roots Start Moving”

When the Roots Start Moving: This article from Free Home University curator Alessandra Pomarico introduces the international roster of writers and artists who contributed to the series, inviting the reader to choose their way into the project. Writers include Manuel Callahan, Silvia Maglioni, and iLiana Fokianaki.

Still from The New Dead End #17 from “Making Films Zapatistically”

Making Films Zapatistically: Inspired by Godard’s invitation to make films politically, director Tsaplya Olga Egorova gives readers a primer on how to make a film “Zapatistically.” “Why does one need to learn from Zapatismo? Because the world we were used to has suddenly changed and the old ways of engaging in political struggle no longer work. We are faced with the need to search for new paths.”

Zapatista Civic Pedagogy in a Time of War: What role does education have in ending the Fourth World War (i.e. racial patriarchal capitalism)? In this text Manuel Callahan outlines a Zapatista civic pedagogy based on action informed by learning, research, and listening.

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