Thu, 20 Jul 2023, 7:30 - 9:30 PM (PDT)
92 Pike St # B, Seattle, WA 98101
M.E. O’Brien presents 'Family Abolition' with guest speakers Dan Berger and Shannon Perez-Darby.
For some of us, the family is a source of love and support. But for many others, the family is a place of private horror, coercion and personal domination. In capitalist society, the private family carries the impossible demands of interpersonal care and social reproductive labor. Can we imagine a different future?
In Family Abolition, author M.E. O’Brien uncovers the history of struggles to create radical alternatives to the private family. O’Brien traces the changing family politics of racial capitalism in the industrial cities of Europe and in the slave plantations and settler frontier of North America, explaining the rise and fall of the housewife-based family form. From early Marxists to Black and queer insurrectionists to today’s mass protest movements, O’Brien finds revolutionaries seeking better ways of loving, caring, and living. Family Abolition takes us through the past and present of family politics into a speculative future of the commune, imagining how care could be organized in a free society.
Dan Berger is an author and historian of activism, Black Power, prisons and the carceral state.
A founding member of the Accountable Communities Consortium, Shannon Perez-Darby is a queer, mixed Latina anti-violence advocate, author, activist, and consultant working to create the conditions to support loving, equitable relationships and communities.
M. E. O’Brien writes on gender and communist theory. She co-edits two magazines, Pinko, on gay communism, and Parapraxis, on psychoanalytic theory and politics. Her work on family abolition has been translated into Chinese, German, Greek, French, Spanish, and Turkish. She received her PhD from NYU. She is the co-author of the novel Everything for Everyone: An Oral History of the New York Commune, 2052–2072. She tweets @genderhorizon.
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M. E. O'Brien
A revolutionary rebuttal of the family under capitalism