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Photograph: Sarah Lee

I don’t think the whole protest is only about occupying physical territory, but about reigniting a new political imagination. I don’t think the state will allow people to occupy a particular space unless it feels that allowing that will end up in a kind of complacency, and the effectiveness and urgency of the protest will be lost. The fact that in New York and other places where people are being beaten and evicted suggests nervousness and confusion in the ruling establishment. I think the movement will, or at least should, become a protean movement of ideas, as well as action, where the element of surprise remains with the protesters.


Arundhati Roy: ‘The people who created the crisis will not be the ones that come up with a solution’

2 thoughts on “Arundhati Roy on Occupy

  1. It’ll be done by new ways, not old ways. The old ways of liberal democratic capitalism and state-sponsored communism are like two teams in a tug of war; at just the point when one team loses, and drops its grip on the rope, the other falls backwards in its victory, and both teams then wait on some new third party to pick up the rope and claim the game. That seems to be the simple and obvious thing a man like Slavoj Zizek says: that we have atleast to present the possibility the game is not over yet. The capitalist societies that are growing are not growing under liberal democracy but under more totalitarian versions of it, and I would argue that’s as much an ecological as philosophical phenomenon. There simply isn’t a big enough planet to sustain our freely choosing growth, and so only the elite’s artificial inflation of that growth will promote it any further, and that, only to a point. Despots cannot control the 99 percent forever; and when even Anglican Bishops on the BBC begin speaking of likely revolutions, and the American people are said to be three times more dissatisfied with their political system than their ancestors were under King George 111, we have no choice but to wonder if the point of despots’ control is already in the passing. It’s been said wars are deliberate decisions to pacify resistance, but those decisions and their wars do eventually elicit the opposite. It seems revealing we are now hearing rumours of war with Iran, at just the point when a veteran anti-war movement is gaining its ascendancy. When pacifistic Occupy movements have doubled their numbers of occupation in just one week, contenders for a Republican Presidency bid are falling over themselves to up the public ante of their violent internationalism (see your waterboarding, raise you covert, deniable, pro-Israeli assasinations!). Tensions are running very high indeed, and that only proves to me that the point of no return is either imminent or passed. Our choice is either to wake and build, or sleep and let destruction come; for whichever way we cut it, something’s coming a bit too fast for anyone’s comfort. Now is the time to distribute ideas as well as wealth, for if we fail to do so now, the despots will not just rob us of all our matter, but of that which really matters behind it, which is our hoping peacefully, and our building with loves unconditional. I no longer want comfort, for I’m not just resigned to the coming discomforts, I’m set free by them. They have set me free to explore the deeper happiness of being human, and that lies in our sharing the bounties of discourse as well as trade. We’ve enough rope to cut some slack just now, but enough to hang ourselves too; and I guess we hang ourselves best by sitting silently, and doing nothing. It is really a sickening thing to watch one’s friends and family bury their heads in reality television and holidays in the sun, when the streets might soon be burning hot themselves, and our reality’s a fascism; and it’s even worse still to hear one’s leaders whore themselves out to bankers, and then ask us to pay for it. These are our lands, people. These are our streets, our fields, our governments! But most of all, and irrevocably, these are our minds, our hearts, and they must be occupied quickly!

  2. hw can i keep myself in touch with medam arundhati roy bcoz ther’s no any option of like or add frienh there.

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