[spectre] Fwd from Gary Hall: CFP - Pirate Care (Coventry University 19/20-06)

Andreas Broeckmann ab at mikro.in-berlin.de
Wed Feb 13 22:09:56 CET 2019

-------- Weitergeleitete Nachricht --------
Betreff: 	CFP - Pirate Care (Coventry University 19/20-06)
Datum: 	Tue, 12 Feb 2019 15:46:06 +0000
Von: 	Gary Hall <mail at garyhall.info>
An: 	spectre at mikrolisten.de

Centre for Postdigital Cultures



19^th & 20^th June 2019

Square One, Coventry University

Call for Papers

Submissions for the screening programme also welcome.

(See instructions at the end of the call.)

The Centre for Postdigital Cultures (CPC), Coventry University, UK 
invites contributions to its second annual conference, which will 
explore the phenomenon of ‘Pirate Care’. Presentations and talks will be 
complemented by a film programme tackling the main theme of the conference.

The term Pirate Care condenses two processes that are particularly 
visible at present. On the one hand, basic care provisions that were 
previously considered cornerstones of social life are now being pushed 
towards illegality, as a consequence of geopolitical reordering and the 
marketisation of social services. At the same time new, 
technologically-enabled care networks are emerging in opposition to this 
drive toward illegality.

Punitive neoliberalism (Davies, 2016) has beenrepurposing, rather than 
dismantling, welfare state provisions such as healthcare, income 
support, housing and education (Cooper, 2017: 314). This mutation is 
reintroducing ‘poor laws’ of a colonial flavour, deepening the lines of 
discrimination between citizens and non-citizens (Mitropolous, 2012: 
27), and reframing the family unit as the sole bearer of responsibility 
for dependants.

However, against this background of institutionalised ‘negligence’ 
(Harney & Moten, 2013: 31), a growing wave of mobilizations around care 
can be witnessed across a number of diverse examples: the recent Docs 
Not Cops campaign in the UK, refusing to carry out documents checks on 
migrant patients; migrant-rescue boats (such as those operated by 
Sea-Watch) that defy the criminalization of NGOs active in the 
Mediterranean; and the growing resistance to homelessness via the 
reappropriation of houses left empty by speculators (like PAH in Spain); 
the defiance of legislation making  homelessness illegal (such as 
Hungary’s reform of October 2018) or municipal decrees criminalizing 
helping out in public space (e.g. Food Not Bombs’ volunteers arrested in 
2017) .

On the other hand, we can see initiatives experimenting with care as 
collective political practices have to operate in the narrow grey zones 
left open between different technologies, institutions and laws in an 
age some fear is heading towards ‘total bureaucratization’ (Graeber, 
2015: 30). For instance, in Greece, where the bureaucratic measures 
imposed by the Troika decimated public services, a growing number of 
grassroots clinics set up by the Solidarity Movement have responded by 
providing medical attention to those without a private insurance. In 
Italy, groups of parents without recourse to public childcare are 
organizing their own pirate kindergartens (Soprasotto), reviving a 
feminist tradition first experimented with in the 1970s. In Spain, the 
feminist collective GynePunk developed a biolab toolkit for emergency 
gynaecological care, to allow all those excluded from the reproductive 
medical services  —  such as trans or queer women, drug users and sex 
workers — to perform basic checks on their own bodily fluids. Elsewhere, 
the collective Women on Waves delivers abortion pills from boats 
harboured in international waters – and more recently, via drones - to 
women in countries where this option is illegal.

Thus pirate care, seen in the light of these processes - choosing 
illegality or existing in the grey areas of the law in order to organize 
solidarity - takes on a double meaning: Care as Piracy and Piracy as 
Care (Graziano, 2018).

There is a need to revisit piracy and its philosophical implications - 
such assharing, openness, decentralization, free access to knowledge and 
tools(Hall, 2016) - in the light of transformations in access to social 
goods brought about by digital networks. It is important to bring into 
focus the modes of intervention and political struggle that collectivise 
access to welfare provisions as acts of custodianship 
(Custodians.online, 2015) and commoning (Caffentzis&Federici, 2014). As 
international networks of tinkerers and hackers are re-imagining their 
terrain of intervention, it becomes vital to experiment with a changed 
conceptual framework that speaks of the importance of the digital realm 
as a battlefield for the re-appropriation of the means not only of 
production, but increasingly, of social reproduction (Gutiérrez 
Aguilar/et al./, 2016). More broadly, media representations of these 
dynamics - for example in experimental visual arts and cinema - are of 
key importance. Bringing the idea of pirate ethics into resonance with 
contemporary modes of care thus invites different ways of imagining a 
paradigm change, sometimes occupying tricky positions vis-à-vis the law 
and the status quo.

The present moment requires a non-oppositional and nuanced approach to 
the mutual implications of care and technology(Mol et al., 2010: 14), 
stretching the perimeters of both. And so, while the seminal definition 
of care distilled by Joan Tronto and Berenice Fisher sees it as 
‘everything that we do to maintain, continue, and repair “our world” so 
that we can live in it as well as possible’ (Tronto & Fisher, 1990: 40), 
contemporary feminist materialist scholars such as Maria Puig de La 
Bellacasa feel the need to modify these parameters to include ‘relations 
[that] maintain and repair a world so that humans and non-humans can 
live in it as well as possible in a complex life-sustaining web’ (Puig 
de La Bellacasa, 2017: 97). It is in this spirit that we propose to 
examine how can we learn to compose (Stengers, 2015) answers to crises 
across a range of social domains, and alongside technologies and care 

We invite proposals for 20 minute presentations on the theme of Pirate 
Care as outlined above. We welcome submissions addressing a wide range 
of topics in response to one or more of the following sub-themes:

*_Criminalisation of Care:_**__*including responses to legal attacks to 
NGO work in the Mediterranean; state-sanctioned violence against 
healthcare practitioners (Buissonniere, Woznick, and Rubenstein, 2018); 
the erosion of reproductive medicine provisions and self-determination 
rights for women; campaigns to decriminalize sexwork and regularize 
domestic workers.

*_Care Struggles:_**__*histories of grassroots and autonomous organizing 
around care / for access to care. Examples might include histories of 
workers’ mutualism; Black Panthers’ free clinics;  ACT UP and AIDS 
organizing around medical research; feminist struggles for free abortion 
rights; marginalized constituencies and underground solidarity networks.

*_Hacking Care:_**__*care practice in relation to technologies and 
tools, open softwares and oppositions to the patent regimes. Relevant 
stories might include: open source medicine; right to repair and medical 
devices; open pharma; open science; biohacking practices.

*_Piracy as Care:_**__*focused on practices of civil disobedience that 
deliberately defy intellectual property and other laws in order to care 
for practices, ecologies, or constituencies. Examples include shadow 
libraries’ use of internet to support or coordinate around specific 
social reproductive needs; tinkering and readaptation of technological 
objects; and digitally-supported systems to support better care of 
common goods.

We welcome contributions from academics, practitioners, artists, and 
activist alike. The programme of talks will be accompanied by a film 
programme addressing the conference theme. Film submissions for 
inclusion are also welcome.

Proposed contributions for papers should include:

a presentation title;

a short abstract (max 350 words);

a short biographical note ( max 150 words)

Proposed contributions from artists and filmmakers should include:

a presentation title and brief synopsis (max 250 words);

a link to the work;

a short biographical note ( max 150 words)

Please be aware that our facilities will allow for a proper theatrical 
screening; the digital format is preferred but you can reach out the 
conference organisers at the email below in case your prospect 
submission is in other formats.

Please send your submission no later than*_April 1_**_^st _**_, 
2019_*to*_piratecare at gmail.com_*

A notification of acceptance will be circulated by mid-April 2019.

Limited travel funding will be made available to conference participants 
on a needs-based basis. Details on how to apply for this will be made 
available following paper acceptance.

The conference will be a child-friendly environment.


*_About the CPC_*

The Centre for Postdigital Cultures (CPC) explores how innovations in 
postdigital cultures can help us to rethink our ways of being and doing 
in the 21st century. Our research draws on cross-disciplinary ideas 
associated with open and disruptive media, the posthumanities, and the 
Anthropocene to promote a more just and sustainable ‘post-capitalist’ 
knowledge economy. 
more detail.



Aguilar R.G., Linsalata L. and M.L.N. Trujillo, 2016. ‘Producing the 
common and reproducing life: Keys towards rethinking/the Political./’ 
In: Dinerstein A. (eds)/Social Sciences for an Other Politics/. Palgrave 

Buissonniere,M., S. Woznick, and L. Rubenstein, 2018. ‘The 
Criminalization of healthcare’, University of Essex, 

Caffentzis, G. and Federici, S., 2014. Commons against and beyond 
capitalism./Community Development Journal/,/49/(suppl_1), pp.i92-i105.

Cooper, M., 2017./Family values: Between neoliberalism and the new 
social conservatism/. MIT Press.

Custodians Online, 2015. ‘In solidarity with Library Genesis and 
Sci-Hub’, 30th November, [_http://custodians.online/_].

Davies, W., 2016. ‘The new neoliberalism’./New Left Review/(101), 121–134

de La Bellacasa, M.P., 2017./Matters of care: Speculative ethics in more 
than human worlds/(Vol. 41). University of Minnesota Press.

Fisher, B. and J. C. Tronto, 1990. ‘Toward a feminist theory of care’, 
in/Circles of Care: Work and Identity in Women’s Lives/, ed. Emily K. 
Abel and Margaret K. Nelson, Albany: SUNY Press.

Graeber, D., 2015./The utopia of rules: On technology, stupidity, and 
the secret joys of bureaucracy/. Melville House.

Graziano, V. 2018. ‘Pirate Care - How do we imagine the health care for 
the future we want?’,/Medium/, 5th October 

Hall, G., 2016./Pirate philosophy: for a digital posthumanities/. MIT Press.

Harney, S. and Moten, F., 2013./The undercommons: Fugitive planning and 
black study/, Minor Compositions.

Mitropoulos, A., 2012./Contract & contagion: From biopolitics to 
oikonomia/. Minor Compositions.

Mol, A., Moser, I. and Pols, J. eds., 2015./Care in practice: On 
tinkering in clinics, homes and farms/(Vol. 8). transcript Verlag.

Stengers, I. (2015)/In Catastrophic times: Resisting the coming 
barbarism/. Open Humanities Press.

Gary Hall, http://www.garyhall.info
Professor of Media, Coventry University
Director of Open Humanities Press: http://www.openhumanitiespress.org

‘Pirate Philosophy’, This Is Not A Pipe Podcast

Übercapitalism and What Can Be Done About It

The Inhumanist Manifesto: Extended Play.
Available for free here: 

More information about the SPECTRE mailing list