In Defense of Transgression

In the days following Donald Trump’s election, we at Red Wedge – shell-shocked and terrified as we were – ran an editorial arguing the basics of survival and resistance for artists and leftists alike. Few need reminding of the terrors that were – and still are – gripping those close to us. Non-male identifying friends and comrades were threatened for wearing their hair “too short.” Armed posses of white supremacists were announcing their intent to patrol colleges and abduct professors teaching the “queer agenda.” The need for self-defense was obvious. And it still is. 

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Red Wedge Editorial Collective Statement

Given all that has transpired, come to light, and in some cases, resurfaced, over the past forty-eight hours, it has become clear to us, the remaining members of the Red Wedge Editorial Collective (EC), that what we have before us are not simply questions of what happens next to the collective or the project, but rather, questions of serious political consequence that we, like the rest of the Left, can no longer put off for a more convenient time.

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Trump, Art, Music + Revenge

President. Donald. Trump. These are three words that never had any reality outside of a grotesque comic. Until now. The man who has bragged of sexual assault, threatened to “build a wall” and refused to denounce an endorsement from a former Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan is President of the United States.

Hate crimes and proto-fascist incidents are spreading across the country. A right-wing terrorist outfit in Texas is threatening to arrest and torture “diversity professors.”

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An Announcement From Red Wedge

Red Wedge was founded in the wake of Occupy Wall Street and the Arab Spring. Despite any number of heroic struggles, most notably (in the U.S.) Black Lives Matter (BLM), things are far grimmer today. The weakness of the workers’ movement the radical left is mirrored in the weakness of the artistic and cultural avant-garde. This two-sided problem, of course, has a major impact on Red Wedge, rooted in our belief both in the independence of art and the possibility of a revolutionary socialist project.

A defeated and marginalized left bears little fruit. A false dichotomy between theory and activism pervades the left. There are the academics who look down on concrete activism. Then there are the oddly anti-intellectual activists who have internalized diminished horizons. The latter are those who might say the “workers don’t want to read/think/look” at that...


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