Original Article – Resistance Ecology
In 2012, a coalition of animal advocates and social justice organizers in the Pacific Northwest committed to reframing the animal liberation movement. Frustrated, stagnant, isolated, and largely neutralized, the movement for animals in the United States was–and still is–in a state of ambivalence that threatens the possibility of substantive change for animals in captivity and on the land. It seemed an overhaul was needed to shift the discourse and organizing towards a new framework, one in which the situation of animal oppression is located in the histories and logic of larger structures of power.
For us, this shift was the emergence of Resistance Ecology. Resistance Ecology started as a project to better understand the “ecology” of power and how to organize more effectively through an “ecology” of resistance. In our initial formulation, Resistance Ecology was intended to build a grassroots network of animal liberation advocates, to tour as means of establishing and sustaining this network, to organize campaigns that would flow from this network, to produce a movement publication in the tradition of No Compromise as a medium for discourse, and to organize an annual conference as a face-to-face forum to center and assess this work in a concerted way. Although we have followed through to varying extents on all of these fronts, our annual conference has come to occupy a unique place in our history, and has since become tantamount to the work of Resistance Ecology itself.
Our friends and supporters have no doubt noticed a lack of activity since our 3rd annual conference in June of 2015. We have made no mention of future plans or current organizing activity, nor have we made any announcements of a 4th annual conference for 2016. This is not due to an absence of diligence or any growing political lethargy. The stillness of the last ten months should not be mistaken for idleness – we are advancing towards different and exciting horizons.