Scattered, undistinguished, active, without absolute truths to propose and without being condescending with the injustice that weighs upon our class. With our backs hunched, we’re – like cells – invisibly replicating in every resistance our sparks can reach.
What is Quilombo Invisível?
The word “quilombo” stands for many things however, above all, it means a territory self-built by the slaves escaping from the exploitation and oppression, a place designed by black runaways, their children and other freed people. “Quilombos” were self-governed territories that were, for hundreds of years, the main experiences of radical denial of the colonial order. They also had a military and self defense role as the runaway slaves had to be always ready to resist or, when not possible to defend themselves, run from the enslavers. It was a place that gathered “mocambos” from many different families, integrating a leadership multiplicity, references and ethnicities. It sheltered black and Brazilian native enslaved people, so they could heal the wounds caused by the brutality of the exploitation and oppression, allowing them to care and be taken care of (lesson that the feminist movement has been recovering in their radical practices). A place of self appreciation, allowing the reconstitution of the desired ways of self expression that were denied by the racist exploitation.
Our goal is not to idealize the old “quilombos”, but to take the learnings from that struggle to the current confrontations related to the exploitation, oppression and resistance that build the invisible routine of the class struggle. We’re invisible because we’re the children of this oppressed afro-indigenous mix, subalternized and exploited by the capital. We’re workers and militants also invisibilized by the left-wing groups because we prioritize the conflicts that are invisible to the hegemonic eye, like the ones that involve black people, indigenous and afro-indigenous – that are until today the most exploited mass of “peripheric”, unemployed people, homeless people, maids, informal workers, incarcerated people and exterminated people, etc. We’re invisible also because our ways of resistance are hidden: the latent revolt that spreads and builds itself everyday in invisible actions, in the daily moments of work and reproductive labor that forges the class struggle. We’re invisible because we understand that our struggle can’t be mainly propagandistic and spectacular, neither aimed at building and promoting our individual image.
The Quilombo Invisível website is a space for discussing our everyday struggles. We believe that the ideas elaborated by the ones from below: workers, indigenous, women, black people, refugees, etc, are necessary to move forward with coherence, in the perspective that the liberation of the people from below will be achieved by themselves. Therefore, the elaboration of ideas can’t continue to be exclusively bounded to the bourgeoisie or petty bourgeoisie, or the State, party or union bureaucracies and professional academics.
We understand that art and literature are ways to build knowledge that are not recognized as knowledge or science but that are used by the less privileged as means to elaborate ideas both to resist and to attack. For that reason, we intend it to be a space that shows and values this kind of production as well.
The website will publish texts from many different writers, not necessarily in full alignment with our positions, but with minimal agreements that allow the exchange of ideas to happen. Besides that, we’ll publish our positions both as a group and as individuals, based on our specific militant experiences.
We understand that, in order to have a real revolutionary perspective, we need to think internationally. For that reason, we’ll do an effort to publish most of the texts in English as well. We understand that, some of our main concerns like the racial, ethnic and gender oppression, for instance, have a central role in the struggle and organization of territories that speak English like the USA, India, South Africa and others. We believe that it’s essential to connect these struggles.
We also intend to translate texts whose ideas intersect the concepts of class conflict, gender and race in order to expand and encourage the production of knowledge in this subject. We believe that we can learn a lot from the experience of the revolutions for national liberation from the African continent, with the experience of general strike of informal workers or the heroic resistance of women in India, the Kurd revolution, the experience of the black movements and the Black Panthers Party in the USA, etc.
Therefore, the website is structured in sessions:
- Invisible ideas: where we’ll publish opinion articles, interviews, analysis, translations and discussions about the many struggles and realities that we face, and other related topics.
- Invisible news: where we’ll publish news from events and conflicts that are happening.
- Invisible literature: where we’ll publish poems, short tales or bits of literature books.
- Invisible schedule: where we’ll spread our activities and activities that we support or think that are interesting.
This introduction was gently written by the invisible:
Gabriel Silva, Heloisa Yoshioka, Helena Silvestre, João Vitor Seixas and Nathália Ract
 The word “peripheric” in Brazilian portuguese means not only the group of countries that are underdeveloped and exploited by developed countries, but also the areas in the cities that are far from the city centre and their residents. These areas are usually home to poor black and indigenous people, “commuter towns” with little access to public health, education and transportation and a huge presence of police violence, like the “blocks” in USA.