Photo above taken May 30, 2020 in Minneapolis by Aren Aizura
This is an excerpt of a longer essay published July 30, 2020. You can read the full essay here.
It does not have to end like this. “Another End of the World is Possible.” In the final days of May 2020, during the uprising in Minneapolis, this was the slogan sprayed in black capital letters on a bright white wall in the midst of a deadly pandemic. Witnesses have it that the French version of the graffiti had already appeared in Paris during the anti-austerity protests of 2016. Whatever its origin, this was an iteration of the older slogan, “Another World Is Possible,” which had spread in the early 2000s as alter-globalization and then antiwar movements were sweeping the world. Clearly, the zeitgeist has changed over the past twenty years. Only in the last three months, hundreds of thousands across the world have died of a single virus. It was only last week that the police suffocated George Floyd to death in Minneapolis. By now, American cities are on fire, millions are screaming—we cannot breathe.
The beginning of a new world requires the end of this one. Perhaps, President Donald Trump knew this when, with a bible in hand, he threatened to deploy the military against protestors making black lives matter on the streets. Disaster, danger, dissent. All the way in Istanbul, it strikes one as a historic event. While millions are demonstrating in the heat, tear-gassed, clubbed, bleeding, the end of the world appears simpler to imagine than its beginning. Yet, there is a utopic element buried in the apocalyptic saying, “Another End of the World is Possible.” It too champions something. In the time that remains, it too affirms the possibility of another reality. …
You can read the full essay here.