Nearly everyone’s talking about the economy, saying it’s time to reevaluate priorities–yet most folks still aren’t comfortable discussing wealth and class. Which is why the dynamic conversation being kicked up by Enough is so essential.
“People feel so much shame [about these subjects],” says Dean Spade, who teaches poverty and transgender law at Seattle University. When Spade met Tyrone Boucher, an activist and author of Privilege and Solidarity, a zine about class privilege, anti-capitalism, and giving away money, at the 2007 U.S. World Social Forum, there was an immediate, lasting connection. They continued to talk throughout the event, posting a few reflections online, and in the hungry feedback that resulted recognized a need to further the conversation on a larger scale.
In February 2008 Boucher and Spade launched Enough: The Personal Politics of Resisting Capitalism. It’s an open forum for the most taboo of subjects: What’s the difference between financial security and hoarding? How do we share? What’s the best way to redistribute wealth? All can contribute, though the pair acknowledge that not every reader is ready to open up. That’s OK. Enough is “not about perfection,” Spade says. It’s about jump-starting a much-needed dialogue.
Enough is a space where intensely personal narratives can become part of a public dialogue, and some of Boucher and Spade’s most moving posts are in this vein. Check out Boucher’s “Letter to My Dad About Giving Away Money,” and Spade’s “The Dirty Details of My New Salary.” They might inspire you to contribute. If you’re not sure where to start, the co-creators offered up a few suggestions of topics about which they’re interested in hosting more dialogue:
- Artists, healers, and other people who have to set prices on their very personal work–how do you deal with those kinds of choices.
- How people are approaching and dealing with their families, especially when making non-accumulative financial decisions.
- Stories about giving away things that are usually kept.
That said, don’t feel hemmed in. “It’s wherever people want to take it,” Spade says, and there are loads of other jumping-off points in the Enough call for submissions. “The underlying thing is the rules that we’re challenging. The ways that we’re taught not to share, to hoard resources, and not to build community–across a lot of differences in access to resources and power. People have taken it in so many different directions, and I think that it’s really intentional.”
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