For the past year, the W.O.W. Project has been engaging in Rootwork, a political education practice created for our team to develop shared analyses about the issues and communities that shape our cultural organizing. To share our experiences, we also created a zine that documents Rootwork’s process, learnings, and resources.
To close out and celebrate this pilot year, we are hosting a panel discussion about how political education strengthens our relationships to each other and to movement-building. W.O.W. will be joined by local organizers from CAAAV/Chinatown Tenants Union and Mexicanos Unidos to discuss different methods of conducting political education within our communities and the value of developing a consistent study practice alongside other anti-gentrification programming, campaigns, and actions.
This event is a part of W.O.W.’s 7th anniversary programming series, Trusting Our Tides, and copies of the Rootwork zine will be available by donation!
About the Panelists
CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities was founded in 1986 by working class Asian women to build power in Asian communities against rising police and hate violence. Over time, our analysis deepened and our work broadened to fighting institutional and systemic racism and violence in Asian immigrant communities. CAAAV’s purpose organize is to develop the leadership of working class Asian immigrants to make a significant intervention in the gentrification of NYC by building neighborhood power in Chinatown and Astoria. Chinatown Tenant Union (CTU) was founded in 2005 by Chinatown tenants to address apartment neglect, landlord harassment, and to develop the leadership of working class Chinatown immigrant residents.
Mexicanos Unidos is a working class led organization that works with people from all diasporas. We developed a people’s program, Plaza Tonatiuh, in response to the rise of street vending as a means of survival during and after the pandemic. Early this year, Plaza Tonatiuh experienced intense state repression through a joint operation between the NYPD and Parks Department. The necessity for plaza and other people’s programs continues. Working class families from all over NYC participated in Plaza Tonatiuh because it served as supplemental or as a main source of income; empowered and activated their political participation; and developed a critical social political consciousness through collective studies. Political education is a necessary tool for our physical and mental liberation. Raising a critical political consciousness is necessary to mobilize for our working class needs as the people are the only ones that can liberate themselves. All power to the people.
The W.O.W. Project is an arts and anti-gentrification organization that centers women, queer, non-binary, and trans Asian youth as leaders working to grow and protect Chinatown’s creative culture. Rootwork is W.O.W.’s political education practice, which aims to refine and clarify our shared knowledge and values while also strengthening our relationships with each other.