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Disturbances lecture series: Lessons from Wisconsin's uprising - reflections on the 2011 occupation of Wisconsin's capital before "Occupy" was cool.

In Helsinki 3rd of March in Kupoli of Uusi Ylioppilastalo (Mannerheimintie 5 B 7th floor) Food 3 PM, lecture 4 PM.

Several months before Occupy movement ignited a massive wave of resistance across the USA and around the world, hundreds of thousands of teachers, public sector workers, students and citizens of all walks of life rose up in a mass movement against the draconian anti-labor laws implemented by Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker in February of 2011. As Egyptian citizens took flocked to Taihrir square in defiance of the Mumbarak regime, as many as 100,000 people flooded the streets of the Wisconsin's capital for weeks on end.

The movement inspired bold not seen in the USA for decades: protestors occupied the capital building, barricaded chambers of legislation while local unions voted for the first general strike in USA in a century. The university's Teachers Aid Association, a union of graduate student workers, even received a pizza delivery called in from Tahrir square as an act of solidarity.

High-level union and Democratic party leaders decided to funnel the discontent into a year-long recall campaign, in an attempt to remove the governor "through the ballot box", an effort that tragically ended in failure. This failure contained many lessons for activists, and informed future forms of resistance, from Occupy to the recent Chicago teacher's strikes; the speaker hopes to use the example of Wisconsin as a discussion of the forces of social movements, and the strategy and tactics in social struggles.

Keegan Elmer took part in the protests and will tell about his first hand experience

(Stevphen Shukaitis, who was announced as a speaker before, has cancelled)


Disturbances is an open series of lectures and discussions at the crossroads of society, philosophy, history, economy and resistance.

We are already aware that we can not live as before, but we do not know what the future holds. Others are stuck in the past, but we only want to understand it. Even a small disturbance of an initial condition can lead a system into a completely different state.

Our speakers are Finnish and international anti-authoritarian researchers and activists. Events are organized in cooperation with A-ryhmä and AutOp, two student groups of the University of Helsinki. You may also follow lecture online (both real-time and recording) at

Our program is created by the participants themselves, if you want to join or simply get in contact, write


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