About

Constructing Solidarities Through Power at the Margin is an initiative among engaged scholars and activists to share with the public, as an open source, the conversations held among them on possibilities of constructing a more humane urbanism whereby there is no homelessness and no evictions for maximized profit. This website reports on two main conversations so far. The first was supported through a two-year effort of the “Insurgent Midwest: Transnational Dialogue for Humane Urbanism” project, which facilitated dialogues among activists in the US (Chicago), South Africa (Cape Town) and Mexico (Mexico City) and led to the 2017 “Constructing Solidarities for Humane Urbanism” symposium held at UIUC among academic and activists. The second was a conversation hosted by the University of Minnesota in 2018 at the “Power at the Margins: Mobilizing Across Housing Injustice” symposium involving housing activists from the West and East coasts as well as the Midwest of the US. This website hopes to continue to serve as a platform to promote the trans-local and transnational solidarities that emerge through stories of power constituted at the margins by fighting back the unjust systems of greed and accumulation institutionalized by white supremacist patriarchal capitalism that produce homelessness and evictions.
The interactive map below introduces the movements participants in these conversations.

The following are some of the events that were held as part of this initiative.
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Symposium held at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Constructing Solidarities for a Humane Urbanism: Ethics, Politics and Challenges in Crossing “Boundaries”

Saturday Sept 9th 5:00-8:00 pm
Asian American Cultural Center, 1210 West Nevada Street, Urbana, IL 61801
Sunday Sept 10th 9:00am-5:00pm
223 Temple Buell Hall, 611 Lorado Taft drive, Champaign, IL 61820

Art Exhibition held at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

FROM MIDDLE-EAST TO MIDWEST:
EVOKING SOLIDARITIES ACROSS TIME & SPACE

Nasrin Navab and Nahid Navab
Art @ the Y Initiative | UNIVERSITY YMCA
Exhibition Opening Thursday, September 7, 5pm-7pm
Artists Talk at 5:30pm

Forum held at Chicago, IL

SOCIAL JUSTICE FORUM

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 3253 W Wilson
6PM-­‐8PM
Spanish interpretation was provided.

Autonomous Tenants Union and Insurgent Midwest Project along with the participants welcomed organizers from  Housing Assembly  in Cape Town,  South Africa to Chicago. They invited  all  Chicago-­‐based  social  justice  groups  to  share  in  conversation about their specific struggles. At this forum, they shared stories of their struggles, tactics of resistance, and discussed new and existing ways to build forms of solidarity across the city and the globe.

Conference held at University of Minnesota, MN, USA

Power at the Margins: Mobilizing Across Housing Injustice

March 1-3, 2018

The margins of traditional housing, those precarious or makeshift spaces against which dominant models of property ownership and exclusion are constructed, have long been a powerful site from which to theorize, organize, and resist. Homelessness, eviction, squatters’ rights, and the right to land all find their way into fruitful interdisciplinary scholarship, much of which links these struggles to broader questions of citizenship, governance, and exclusion. Meanwhile many of the same root problems motivate housing activists around the globe. These community organizing struggles create a more grounded, pragmatic critiques and strategies, as activists deploy popular education to empower those immediately affected and often situate their movements within broader social justice movements, from labor struggles to fights for racial or caste justice.