Translations, occupations, bookfairs and trailers

Posted on 07. Nov, 2011 by .

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As mentioned in our last blog entry, we moved to Cape Town at the beginning of September where we gave another very successful talk about our film. We also met more Cape Town anarchists and, together with them, helped organize the first ever anarchist bookfair (www.anarchistbookfair.co.za) on the African continent. The bookfair was a huge success and received a surprising amount of publicity. Hundreds of people attended, the talks were packed with people and we sold many, many books and pamphlets on anarchism.

Now that it’s over, we’re busy working on the documentary again. We intended to release the trailer at the bookfair but have realized that for an amazing trailer – and we’re committed to nothing less – we really need a professional editor. Fortunately, however, one of our friends has the requisite skills and has agreed to help us with it, and this will be our primary task for the rest of the year. We’ve also lined up a few interviews with three awesome black South African anarchists and poets over the next few weeks.

In response to our call for help in our last blog entry, a whole bunch of people offered to help us with translations and transcriptions. So far we have received three fully transcribed and translated interviews, all of which are awesome and all of which will find their way into the documentary. We’re very excited by these newly translated interviews, all of which underscore the global scope – and awesomeness – of contemporary anarchism!

On another note, we have, like so many of you, been sidetracked by the occupations. While Cape Town isn’t quite Wall Street or Oakland, it is nonetheless inspiring to see the same forms and principles emerging locally; we’ve also thoroughly enjoyed following the trajectory of the international movement through some of the people and places we’ve encountered on this trip, especially our friends and comrades in Oakland! In this time of global upheaval we are proud to be working on this documentary, which feels more and more relevant with each passing day.

Finally, we would like to extend our deepest appreciation to Mario Remedios, Pedro Pablo Santa Maria, Justin Windett and Leif Johnson for their help with transcriptions and translation. We don’t know what we would have done without you!

That’s it for now. Hopefully the next time you hear from us we’ll have something to show you!

Aragorn and Steffi

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Catching up on the last few months

Posted on 20. Sep, 2011 by .

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Our last blog entry was a bit pessimistic. As we noted, we ran out of money much sooner than we thought we would and were disappointed at not being able to visit important destinations like France, Spain, Greece and Italy. Heck, North Africa would have been great too!

We left Europe disappointed and – because we are anarchists – reminded once again of how much both capitalism (we had to struggle to find work to earn some survival cash) and states (Aragorn’s Schengen visa expired) screw people over. Since we’ve been back in South Africa, we’ve spent a lot of time thinking about a good narrative for the trailer, the documentary itself and what kind of (non-talking head) footage and aesthetic approach we want to use in the film. We’ve also watched and transcribed many of our interviews and received some much needed help from our friends Jonathan, Pina and Johnny, who looked at and partly translated some of the non-English-speaking interviews for us.

From what we have so far we’ve developed a talk which we first presented at Love and Revolution in Johannesburg about a month ago. We gathered 30 or so people together over coffee and wine to tell them about our travels and our experiences and, most importantly, we finally shared some of the filmed interviews with other people. The feedback was great, and gave us a much-needed morale boost. Attendees were excited and inspired by the 20 or so random short clips we showed; they can’t wait to see the film and neither can we!

Now that our optimism has returned, we hope to (finally!) be able to finish a trailer in the next few months. We know we’ve been promising one for ages, but we want to make sure that when it comes out, it’s perfect. We also hope to be able to use the trailer to raise more money so we can pay for some proper editing and post-production to make this documentary as awesome and professional as possible; if all goes well, we might even be able to raise funds for a few final interviews in Europe, and for our travel costs to check out an awesome anarchist project in Zimbabwe (which we want to do last in case our equipment gets confiscated).

We’d also like to put out another call for mutual aid: if any of you out there want to help us in any way, please contact us at us@anarchismdocumentary.net. We especially need help with non-English speaking transcriptions and translations (especially Spanish and Portuguese). We are also looking for people who want to offer designs and animations (for a few statistics we want to use, and to visually depict certain anarchist concepts).

Finally, we have just relocated to Cape Town where we plan to open our own infoshop/cafe some day soon; we hope that some of the wonderful anarchists we met during our travels will come visit us :-)

And now it’s back to work!

Love & anarchy,
Aragorn and Steffi

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