Readings in Austerity

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Date(s) - Wednesday, 06/05/2019
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Klinger Studios


The dictionary defines austerity as “sternness or severity of manner or attitude”. However, we often read about “austerity measures”, “austerity policies”, the impact of “austerity” on this or that, or read about anti austerity protests. Does this mean that Occupy was a protest against a stern attitude, or that stern mannerisms are at the root of cuts to education? The short answer is yes. More often, though, austerity is taken to refer to a specific kind of economic policy, where governments try to cut their spending, often by cuts to social programs and infrastructure.


In this course, we will explore the impact of austerity policies (and austerity attitudes) through a series of short readings paired with pieces of art and music which deal with the impact of austerity policies on people, families, communities, and institutions. Participants are encouraged to use the readings as a way of understanding their own experiences and daily lives, and encouraged to contribute their own knowledge or perspectives, even (or especially) at the expense of the readings.


Week one (Wednesday June 5th, 7-9PM Klinger Studios): What is Austerity?


Week two (Wednesday June 12th, 7-9PM Klinger Studios): Austerity at school


Week three (Wednesday June 19th, 7-9PM Klinger Studios): Austerity and the prison


Week four(Wednesday June 26th, 7-9PM Klinger Studios : Austerity and ecology