Tag Archives: autonomous zones

Beyond Zuccatti

An interesting analysis of foundational place the Temporary Autonomous Zone of Hakim Bey has within the the Occupy movement can be found in “BEYOND ZUCCOTTI” a recent post over at Global Guerrillas.

“Over the last couple of months, Occupy had gone beyond a reliance on a specific place like Zuccotti. It developed a recipe for how to set up a temporary autonomous zone (what’s often called a TAZ).

What is a TAZ? A location that is outside of the control of the nation-state and global marketplace. Specifically, in the context of Occupy, the TAZ is

  • the modern equivalent of a nomadic village (a mobile, temporary community)
  • community that is self-governed (typically democratically)
  • a counter cultural hot spot (from music to visual arts to deep discussion)
  • a media hub and wireless communications network
  • a source of limited amounts of shelter/power/prepared food/etc.
  • simple security and a means of defense (this will get more elaborate)
  • a launching point for protest

What does all of this mean?

Here are some conclusions. I’ll refine this list as we progress.

  • The TAZ will be attractive to younger people (from the unique atmosphere to the element of danger involved).
  • Much of the technology that is being developed for the Occupy TAZ (energy, communications, etc.) is useful for building resilient communities
  • If passive TAZ defense tech/techniques are developed and deployed, these communities will be very difficult to eradicate

There are also a number of interesting links to other posts at that blog to further explore the nature of TAZ as a part of resistance, such as GLOBAL GUERRILLAS AND TEMPORARY AUTONOMOUS ZONES and The Occupy API and Open Source Protest

In the comments to that blog post, there’s mention of the need for some kind of permanent solution, which of course reminds me of some of the other resources at the library, such as The Periodic Autonomous Zone and Permanent TAZs to name just two. You may want to check out more at Hakim Bey and Ontological Anarchy.

The Occupy Movement and Millennial Politics

Mention of the philosophical connection between the Temporary Autonomous Zone of Hakim Bey and the Occupy movement can be found in “The Real Battle of St Paul’s Cathedral: The Occupy Movement and Millennial Politics” a recent post over at Christianity & Contemporary Politics.

“But there is also a striking contrast between those who gathered at St Paul’s Cross in 1066 and those who are encamped around it today. In 1066 there was a clear enemy and a clear set of demands. Many complain that the Occupy movement lacks any such clear programme. Yet this is to misunderstand the nature of the Occupy movement for whom the process is the programme. Demands are formulated but these are secondary. What matters is the transformative experience of participation.

What is created around the Cathedral and in other Occupy sites can be characterised as ‘temporary autonomous zones’ or TAZ’s. These TAZ’s are meant to give people an experience of direct democracy, including not only the experience of autonomy, but also of the free exchange of ideas and a spontaneous social order in a space free from control by capitalist corporations or state authorities. The primary point of focus is the daily General Assembly where all matters are decided, anything can be proposed and anyone can take part.” [via]