This Thursday evening, Manchester Zapatista Collective are hosting a public documentary screening and book presentation in solidarity with the Zapatista movement in Chiapas, Mexico. The event, taking place on Thursday 19th January at Manchester’s Green Fish Resource Centre, will be an opportunity for attendees to learn more about the movement and indigenous communities’ struggle for liberation in Chiapas since the Zapatista uprising of 1994.

The Uprising of Dignity’ documentary

The Uprising of Dignity tells the story of how, on Jan 1st 1994, indigenous men and women occupied seven cities in Chiapas, dividing it between thousands of families and establishing self governing communities. These communities have since been working to resist state domination and build their own civil structures to sustain its people.

Book presentation: ‘Critical Thinking in the Face of the Capitalist Hydra’

15220232_1213280225388487_8374867915113259702_n The Manchester Zapatista Collective will also present the English translation of ‘Critical Thinking in the Face of the Capitalist Hydra’. This book is the product of a Zapatista organised seminar in Chiapas in 2015, and includes the transcriptions of a series of presentations from members of the Zapatista Army for National Liberation (EZLN).

As well as providing an insight into one of the most remarkable anti-capitalist struggles of our time, the book reaches out to readers across the world for global solidarity. However, it also maintains that the story of the EZLN and Zapatista communities is not one to be duplicated in all communities worldwide, but instead is an example of how organised groups can resist capitalism, patriarchy and racism in their own way, on their own terms.

A global solidarity movement

Despite being over 5000 miles away from Chiapas, there is a growing community in Manchester that is taking inspiration from the Zapatistas’ ongoing struggle, whilst feeding into a world-wide ‘principle-based solidarity’ movement which transgresses national borders and fixed identities.

Heike, a member of the Manchester Zapatista Collective, explained the significance of the Zapatista movement for Mancunians today:

“In all my life the autonomous governments of the Zapatistas seems to me the most livable one. Its relevant for Manchester because many Mancunians believe that devolution will bring more democracy, but I would urge them to check out the Zapatistas’ model first.”

The Manchester group welcomes those that are curious about different ways communities could organise themselves for a more just society to come to tomorrow’s event and find out more.

Alice Toomer – McAlpine

Copies of the book will be available on Thursday for £12.

All proceeds of the event go towards the costs incurred by the production of the English edition of Critical Thinking in the Face of the Capitalist Hydra.

Find out more details about the event here
Find out more about the Manchester Zapatista Collective here

Images via Manchester Zapatista Collective (with permission)

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  • Alice Toomer-McAlpine

    Co-founder and Co-editor of The Meteor, Alice is a community worker and journalist from Manchester who works across a range of roles including youth work, community organising, video production and creative documentation of non-profit projects. Alice is interested in how the stories we create and share shape the world we live in, and how communities can take ownership of their stories and build trust with local independent media to build collective power.


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