Mark Fisher: Capitalist Realism Part 2

9 June 2018

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Venue: Yurt Café, St. Katharine’s Precinct, 2 Butcher Row, London E14 8DS

Organiser: [ART&CRITIQUE]

[ART&CRITIQUE] is a London-based alternative art education network dedicated to critical engagement with contemporary art. We employ collaborative, co-operative and collective models of pedagogy and organisation and foster alternative models of art education in a series of public events and open-access courses. [ART&CRITIQUE] is an independent, self-organised, self-funded non-profit organisation. If you’d like to join the network please come along to an event. If you have an idea for an event or collaboration please get in touch. Our website provides information and resources for artists, curators, students and anyone interested in art practice, critical theory and research.

Join us for the second in the series of book clubs on Capitalist Realism by Mark Fisher. This book club will take place on Unison, a lifeboat-turned-project-space. We will meet at Yurt Café and walk to the boat moored nearby.

Capitalist Realism was published one year after the 2008 financial crisis, when it became clear that the priority was to return to business-as-usual, rather than tackle the systemic failure of the financial sector. Mark Fisher’s book was a desperate attempt to question the unshakable belief that “there is no alternative” to capitalism and thereby introduce alternative conceptions of social organisation into public discourse. In chapters 4-5 he unpicks the failures of neoliberalism in education and employment, highlighting the concomitant rising levels of anxiety and depression.

Fisher emphasises that capitalism requires our complicity in order to function, that we effectively endorse capitalism through our actions rather than our convictions, and that far from being a radical practice, anti-capitalist critique is a feature of capitalism. He argues that we have transitioned from a traditional disciplinary regime to a society of decentralised control; where control is internalised in self-assessment and self-surveillance.

What contradictions do we face in our labour and creative practices? How can we respond productively to these contradictions in our everyday life?

For more information, to download the text and book your place please visit our website.