Communal Luxury: Post-capitalism and the End of Labour

Capitalism has long been characterised as a flexible, adaptive system, able to sidestep any and all global catastrophes and reinvent itself. However, the decline of the industrial economy, coupled with the rise of automation technologies and open-source information sharing, has led some to conclude that capitalism may be running out of road. This strand of Document examines the current and historical state of global (de)industrialisation, the precarity of human labour and the implications for our environment.

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Behemoth (Bei xi mo shou)

A poetic protest against the destructive social and environmental effects of industrialisation in China. Zhao Liang’s visually arresting and meditative film takes us to the heart of the Chinese mining industry, highlighting its toxic impact. Sheep farmers are driven from their pastures to make way for mines; sick miners with ruined lungs lie dying in local hospitals. A mountain paradise becomes an industrial wasteland surrounded by ghost towns of brand-new, deserted apartment blocks. In the Old Testament, the mountains are the domain of a monster named Behemoth; in modern times the vast mining industry has taken this monster’s place. Drawing on Dante’s Inferno, this lyrical yet politically-charged film offers a moving portrait of a modern-day hell.

Info

Event: Screening

Director: Zhao Liang

Year: 2015

Country: China/France

Date: Saturday 22 October

Time: 8.00pm

Running Time: 1hr 30m

Location: CCA Cinema

Glasgow Glam Rock Dialogues: 3 – Commune

The Glasgow Glam Rock Dialogues is a collaboration between David Archibald and Carl Lavery from the School of Culture and Creative Arts at the University of Glasgow. It is an attempt to “perform thinking” in front of a live audience, and mixes Brechtian techniques with a glam rock aesthetic. During the performances, our middle-aged glam rockers channel the spirits of Marc Bolan and Suzi Quatro, Karl Marx and Peter Kropotkin, to approach pressing issues facing the world today. In the Glasgow Glam Rock Dialogues, the aim is not to teach but to provoke debate, whilst sporting spandex trousers and feather boas.

Glasgow Glam Rock Dialogues: 3 – Commune is a dialogic performance which responds to the issues and themes raised in La Commune (Paris, 1871), a six-hour long film about the Paris Commune. Carl and David, two fading glam rockers trying to get their band back on the road, will explore commune as a theoretical concept, the specificities of the Paris Commune and its lessons and afterlives, the role or radical art and culture, and then think through what communism might mean in a twenty-first century context.

This event is free but ticketed.

Info

Event: Performance

Date: Saturday 22 October

Time: 6.30pm

Running Time: 1hr

Location: CCA Creative Lab

La Commune (Paris, 1871)

Document, in association with Film and Television Studies at the University of Glasgow, presents an extremely rare opportunity to watch this extraordinary six-hour long film about the Paris Commune on the big screen. Director Peter Watkins’ previous work includes War Games, a documentary about the fallout of a nuclear attack, which was banned by the BBC for thirty years. In La Commune (Paris, 1871), Watkins turns his attention to the heroic attempts of Parisian workers to build a revolutionary socialist republic. But this is no mainstream historical drama. Rather, Watkins employs experimental cinematic techniques to link the Communards’ struggles to present-day concerns, and to critique the ideological role played by the film and television industry.

Introduced by David Archibald (University of Glasgow).

There will be a 15-minute interval half-way through the film.

This screening is presented in association with Alliance Française.

 

Info

Event: Screening

Director: Peter Watkins

Year: 2000

Country: France

Date: Friday 21 October

Time: 12.00pm

Running Time: 5hr 45m (+15m interval)

Location: Andrew Stewart Cinema, University of Glasgow

Next Stop: Utopia

When the Greek factory of Vio.me. closes down, a group of workers decides to take radical action. They occupy the factory and attempt to operate it themselves, based on the principles of direct democracy. Their venture inspires activists all around the world, while the ex-owner is astonished to see the family business turn into a symbol for the up-and-coming radical left. For the workers, striving to make ends meet, self-management turns out to be an unprecedented adventure, full of conflicts. They soon realise that in order to succeed, the first thing they have to change is themselves.

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Event: Screening

Director: Apostolos Karakasis

Year: 2015

Country: Greece

Date: Friday 21 October

Time: 5.30pm

Running Time: 1hr 31m

Location: CCA Cinema

Out On The Street

Nine men gather for a workshop on a rooftop. There they perform confrontations of everyday life, with the police and at the workplace. In the process, the actors engage a space between the theatrical and the real. This is not a film about workers. The factory is a microcosm, a miniature Egypt.

Info

Event: Screening

Director: Jasmina Metwaly / Philip Rizk

Year: 2015

Country: Egypt

Date: Saturday 22 October

Time: 3.00pm

Running Time: 1hr 12m

Location: CCA Cinema