Recreation At Stake

Valeria Graziano

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    I start from Audre Lorde’s intuition around the polysemy of the term, recreation: to put forward this concept as an organizational principle. Via the framework of recreation, I want to think about some of the main political stakes of the forms used by collectivities able to act politically in the present. I transpose the double binding that Lorde ascribed to recreation, with its connotations of play, reciprocity, repetition and regeneration, from the realm of intimate, one-to-one relationships – with one’s lover, with the blank page – to bear consequence upon the organization of collective endeavours, in order to transgress some received ideas around the organization of cultural production, the locus of creativity and the politics of use of collective pleasures. The importance of recreation shall become clearer as I move from this notion to what I named, with an admittedly less poetic, yet hopefully effective, play of words: the recreative industries. By this term, I wish to call attention to a type of organization that has existed in various forms throughout modernity, dedicated to regenerating living labour and sustaining free time of the oppressed and the exploited against capitalist temporal structuring and valuation – and in opposition to the limitation of an experience of public pleasure as solely organized around work or consumption. The recreative hypothesis is moreover a political framework for reclaiming the organization of those semiotic, affective or relational productions that, under capital, stand severed from the other kinds. I will base my presentation on a number of examples, including historical references to the junk playgrounds in Danmnark and UK and people’s houses, as well as the contemporary example of the occupation of abandoned cultural facilities in Italy in the aftermath of the 2008’s financial crisis.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationA Live Gathering
    Subtitle of host publicationPerformance and Politics in Contemporary Europe
    EditorsAna Vujanović , Livia Andrea Piazza
    Place of PublicationBerlin
    Number of pages29
    EditionCreate to Connect project
    ISBN (Print)9783942214292
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019

    Bibliographical note

    The book is published under the Creative Commons License:Attribution – Non-Commercial – Share Alike.


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