This is hopefully going to be a place for not only me to talk to you all, both students and friends, but also a place for you to talk to me. The idea for this blog came out of discussions I had with friends about the Introduction to Anarchism class I am teaching this semester. Some of you wanted to be able to sit in on the class and can't due to scheduling conflicts, some of you just can't get to Binghamton. But as this discussion evolved it has become clear that this is not going to be just a place to listen to podcasts of the lectures I will be giving this semester, it is also a place for those that listen online to contribute to the discussion around these ideas. This is a class that in its very basic conception is meant to challenge the borders of the classroom. The idea is that the classroom will be open to students, non-student participants that want to attend, and people that want to participate over the internet. The hope is that, like anarchy itself, this discussion will not be limited by the borders of location, student status, or political participation. This will only work if all the people that listen in on this blog also contribute comments and discussion to the blog itself. Let the experiment begin!!
One quick note: Just as we all hate snitches and informants we should also be wary of recording devices in our midst. This is not a paranoid fantasy, just the realization that when recorded some people tend to shy away from speaking. I want this classroom to be as open of a space as possible, and therefore will be encouraging people to make comments freely in class under the condition that, as a class, we practice security culture. This means not reporting comments of others to cops, administrators, or other bureaucrats. This also means creating a space where we can once again begin to trust each other. This trust is based on creating a space where people are free to express and debate ideas without fear of repercussions. It also means, and this goes double for those participating on the internet, that we will not be talking about concrete actions of an illegal or subversive nature. This is a class about concepts and what you do with those concepts is your own choice. Talking about specific actions puts us all at risk.
With this in mind I will not be recording the class itself. These podcasts are being recorded after class and then posted on the internet to eliminate recording devices in the classroom. If there are any question about this please email me.