Posts tagged sara ahmed

what is solidarity?

"Solidarity does not assume that our struggles are the same struggles, or that our pain is the same pain, or that our hope is for the same future. Solidarity involves commitment, and work, as well as the recognition that even if we do not have the same feelings, or the same lives, or the same bodies, we do live on common ground." - Sara Ahmed

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I believe that we are all connected. We are made out of the same stuff (dust if you’re poetic, particles if you’re scientific) and we live on the same planet. And even the planet itself is made out of the same primeval stuff. It’s really that simple. Maybe this is a childish view in its simplicity. That does not make it less valid. I sometimes wish our governments and leaders would think a bit more like children.

I also believe that what goes around, comes around. Violence tends to foster more violence. Luckily the same can be said for acts of kindness, of love and of empathy. My goal is to inspire acts of solidarity, that in turn will inspire more.

Historically, the word solidarity comes from French solidarité

In 1840, Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, declared:

“Equality of conditions is the law of society, and universal solidarity [solidarité] is the ratification of this law.“

It came into the English language in 1848.

Dictionary.com describes it thus:

Union or fellowship arising from common responsibilities and interests, as between members of a group or between classes, peoples etc.

I personally believe it is time to look beyond groups, classes and nationalities. Don’t get me wrong, as cultures, classes and peoples are continuing to be oppressed by their governments, it is highly necessary to extend solidarity to whole groups. And it is natural to feel solidarity with those you can identify with. But solidarity ventures even further than that. It involves giving support to strangers on their own terms. 

What do you believe? What are your thoughts on solidarity? Please feel free to share in the comments below.