Editor’s Space // Seen: Article on Street Art x Violence in Madrid

andando por las calles: walking in the streets

Walking by different districts in Madrid on my way to work I run into several stencils,  graffiti, and interventions that focus on the cuts in social budgets and on the labor precarization that have been imposed on the people living in the Spanish state.  With the potency inherent to non-authorized cultural production, these pieces make visible what Slavoj Zizek calls systemic or institutionalized violence. In Violence:  Six Sideways Reflections (2008) Zizek argues that it is in the circulation of capital–in the “self-propelling metaphysical dance of capital”–where the “fundamental systemic violence of capitalism” resides  (11).  Depressingly, this is nothing new: the interests of global capital take precedence over the needs of people and of life on the planet. The icons, declaratory texts, and figures that compose these stencils and graffiti on the streets of Madrid confront the passersby with the devastating effects of systemic violence on people’s lives and interrupt…

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