Open Space Seminar Series, 2003, Delhi

In the run-up to the fourth World Social Forum held in Mumbai, India in January 2004, civil activists and students organized a major series of seminars in Delhi University to discuss the Forum and its politics. The 'Open Space' seminar series, as it came to be called, picked up on the idea of the Forum as a relatively free space, where all kinds of ideas could meet and be discussed.

This series was organized by Jai Sen and Madhuresh Kumar of CACIM, and Mukul Mangalik of Delhi University. A book Talking New Politics edited by Jai Sen and Mayuri Saini, and based on the ideas generated by the discussions during the series has been published by Zubaan Publishers, New Delhi. The book comprises chapters based on the transcripts of presentations made by academics and activists during the seminars, as well as discussions on questions arising from the presentations.

In addition, Taran Khan, an independent film maker, produced a movie 'Opening Space’. Part document, part reflection, it draws from the experience of the Open Space Seminar Series. Using footage filmed at and around two key sessions of the Series (Caste and Race/Gender and Sexuality) the film examines the manner in which the coming of the Forum to India influenced the vocabulary and strategy of movements connected in varying degrees to the global arena. Through interviews with various stakeholders brought together by this Series - academicians, activists, NGO representatives and students - the film attempts to provide a view of the of the WSF in the “real world” - how it is thought about, talked about and acted out in locations outside the dateline of its brief existence as ‘Event’. The focus is thus on the Forum as Process - on examining how ideas acquire a momentum of their own, how they are played out in diverse arenas and are renegotiated and reinvented by actors in their search for relevance.

In this section of the webspace, we are making available edited transcripts of the seminar series, all published articles from the book Talking New Politics and are also making available the movie 'Opening Space’.

As with the ISSJ Space, we encourage you to post your comments on the articles as you read them, post reviews of any article as you deem fit, or submit articles of your own * Berber Carpet (external link).

Contributors to this page: garydavid , sebydesiolim , Subramanya (Subbu) Sastry and System Administrator .
Page last modified on Friday 04 of February, 2011 22:52:00 IST by garydavid.

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