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The Hologram

The Hologram

Feminist, Peer-to-Peer Health for a Post-Pandemic Future

Cassie Thornton

Series: Vagabonds

A radical new approach to health and caregiving in the age of COVID-19.

In an era when capitalism leaves so many to suffer and to die, with neoliberal 'self-care' offering little more than a bandaid, how can we take health and care back into our hands? In The Hologram, Cassie Thornton puts forward a bold vision for revolutionary care: a viral, peer-to-peer feminist health network.

The premise is simple: three people - a 'triangle' - meet on a regular basis, digitally or in person, to focus on the physical, mental and social health of a fourth - the 'hologram'. The hologram, in turn, teaches their caregivers how to give and also receive care; each member of their triangle becomes a hologram for another, different triangle, and so the system expands.

Drawing on radical models developed in the Greek solidarity clinics during a decade of crisis, and directly engaging with discussions around mutual aid and the coronavirus pandemic, The Hologram develops the skills and relationships we desperately need for the anti-capitalist struggles of the present, and the post-capitalist society of the future. One part art, one part activism, one part science fiction, this book offers the reader a guide to establishing a Hologram network as well as reflections on this cooperative work in progress.

Cassie Thornton is an artist and activist from the US, currently living in Canada. She refers to herself as a feminist economist, a title that frames her work as that of a social scientist actively preparing for the economics of a future society that produces health and life without the tools that reproduce oppression— like money, police or prisons. She is currently the co-director of the Re-Imagining Value Action Lab in Thunder Bay, an art and social centre at Lakehead University in Ontario, Canada.

''The Hologram' is a powerful and beautiful tool for people and societies in movement. It helps us see how moments of crisis give rise to new forms of solidarity and connectedness. It exemplifies what we as scholars, artists, and peoples in movement can do to share these stories, learn from them, and expand them in our own locations to transform... everything! Inspired by the Greek Social Solidarity Clinics, 'The Hologram' brings the reader on a journey into what we can reimagine and remake together. Join this journey: you will be transformed.' - Marina Sitrin

'What comes after Covid? How do we address the naked, class-based and racial inequalities exposed by the plague? Is it conceivable that an aesthetic of mutual care is the singular cure for this mademic, which is anything but a strictly natural catastrophe? Artist and activist Cassie Thornton proposes just such a healing hypothesis in 'The Hologram', a work that is part diagnosis, part prescription, and an altogether politically prismatic and speculative toolbox for 'dehabituating humans from capitalism'. It could not come at a more necessary moment.' - Gregory Sholette

''The Hologram' is an imaginative intervention that proposes a collective model for health care as a process of political transformation. With the Covid-19 pandemic we have seen that the systems of care that prevail in capitalism do not work. 'The Hologram' offers an inspiring solution.' - Melanie Gilligan, artist and writer

Foreword by Max Haiven
Preface: Artist Update
The Fool by Stella Lawless, The Hologram’s Resident Witch
1. A Different Medicine is Possible: Visiting the Greek Solidarity Clinics
2. Is this the End or is this the Beginning? A Four-Part Course in Social Holography: i. Trust; ii. Wishes; iii. Time; iv. Patterns
3. The Practice
4. Wikipedia Entry from the Future
5. Feminist Economics and the People’s Apocalypse
Appendix I: Art, Debt, Health and Care: An Interview
Appendix II: Contextualizing The Hologram: Feminist Ethics, Post-Work Commons and Commons in Exile, by Magdalena Jadwiga Hartelova
The Ten of Swords, Pulled and Written by Stella Lawless, The Hologram’s Resident Witch
Published by Pluto Press in Jul 2020
Paperback ISBN: 9780745343327
eBook ISBN: 9780745343235

144 pages

110mm x 215mm