This event called Dialektikon 2012 recreated key moments from a radical meeting held at The Roundhouse (Camden, London) in 1967 called the Dialetics of Liberation. “The purpose was to demystify human violence in all its forms, the social systems from which it emanates and to explore new forms of action.”
When I arrived I was disappointed (again) to be amongst a majority of middle class and middle aged people. However it is understandable that this event should attract such a crowd as it was clear that many had attended the 1967 event.
The quick pace of the schedule which included speeches, poems and songs made the event very interesting and engaging.
An actor read RD Laing’s 1967 speech which covered a range of issues that run parallel to the present; how the meeting had taken place at a moment in history which was both confusing and frightening; how the system threatens life as we know it and we have to find new ways of changing it; how western governments have become skilled practitioners at mass murder and how it may be the Vietnam War today but tomorrow it could be the Middle East. Another interesting point was how individuals are trained to obey orders and do nearly anything when commanded by authority but that people who exercise power can only succeed if other people follow orders.
Allen Ginsberg’s speech mentioned the need for proposals for a new society based on a general consciousness and implemented on a small scale, rather than waiting for a revolution. He spoke about finding a new way without leaders that expands gradually and naturally. I reckon the Occupy movement has similar aspirations.
It was inspiring to tap into the general mood of an event that took place 45 years ago but I was shocked by how the same issues resonate today. I left feeling that the generation of the ’60s tried hard to change the world for the better back then but now our job is to pick up where they left off, without the LSD!