I am spending part of my day writing a grant proposal, seeking support for an action-research project with the Ohio Student Association (OSA). The intent of Breaking consent, sustaining struggles for educational justice is to extend and reflect upon OSA’s ongoing political education programing around two key issues: 1) escalating student debt, and 2) the subjection of young people of color to the ‘school-to-prison pipeline.’
The best developed element of this programming is OSA’s Fellowship for Community Change (more can be found here). As part of this Fellowship Program, January and February activist retreats in Columbus and Dayton respectively have been venues for co-producing knowledge that breaks the ‘consent’ expressed in our various individual accommodations of neoliberalism in higher education or of racial injustice, and which therefore lends itself to collective action. OSA’s upcoming scheduled retreats are in Cleveland (April 4-6), and in Columbus (May 16-18).
Our collaborative action-research around experiences with OSA’s political education programming promises to draw from and contribute to geographies of activism and social movements. Specifically, the project team is well positioned to contribute to existing relational-ontological theorizations of social movement formation, the disruption of an apparently post-political situation around the development of young people as ‘political’ actors, and an action-research approach to political identity formation. Readers of this blog can expect to see more about the ‘Breaking Consent’ project in the months to come.