Balkan Anarchist Bookfair 2023 is less then a month away! In this post we want to inform you about the organizational process so far, share with you new and relevant information and give the last encouragement to the international anarchist and anti-authoritarian movement for its participation.
The first call for participation that we published in November 2022 was translated into 18 different languages and was shared and distributed widely. We contacted and invited hundreds of comrades of different groups, organizations and networks from different geographies to consider their participation. Thanx to your help, support and response we are sure BAB2023 will meet the expectations expressed in the first call – to organize a strong international anarchist gathering – one where we can address important questions of our time in a collective manner and with a perspective of future organizing and struggle.
As so many of you responded to our call, helped us in the promo-organizational process and with the help to support participation of those who have difficulties to travel (in a financial or political sense), we are happy to inform you that we are expecting large number of comrades to come to Ljubljana and participate at the gathering: from all of the Balkan countries, from East, West, Central and South Europe, from Latin America and beyond.
List of participants: Check the list of participating groups, organizations and projects that will be present at BAB2023 here. If you want the name of your group, organization or project to be published on this list, contact us via email: bab2023(at)riseup(dot)net. The list will be regularly updated until the gathering in July.
We also want to thank all spaces that hosted us and all the comrades that helped us organize BAB2023 info-events from Warsaw to Athens, from Lyon to Bucharest. We think this events also helped us build a common process and productive moment that can be upgraded at the gathering itself. Check the full list of info-events leading up to BAB2023 and some reports from them here.
We received a lot of proposals for presentations, discussions and workshops and we proposed some of them from our side. The working group of Organizational Assembly of BAB2023 that is coordinating and creating the framework for the program of BAB2023 still has a lot of work. We try to organize the program in a way that can help fulfil the political agenda of the gathering as expressed in the first call – to form meaningful proposals for future steps that can help us tackle the challenges our movements and societies are facing. We hope that most of the discussions will be oriented towards finding common perspectives and towards building common consciousness, struggles and initiatives in a practical way.
Unfortunately we won’t be able to give space for all the proposals that we received since we are limited by time and space. We ask you to understand this and find other ways to communicate your agendas at the gathering. A lot of political work and networking will anyway take place outside of the official program. There will also be an Open space available during the gathering where spontaneous meetings, discussions or other things can take place.
We are regularly updating the Program page with announcement and details on specific events. Last added are the information on Counter-cultural evening program and announcement of cluster discussion Balkan Anarchists against War.
BAB2023 will start on the 6th of July with autonomously organized DAY0 – anarcha-queerfeminist networking and organising. The Bookfair itself and other program will continue on the 7th of July till the 9th of July.
The final program with dates, hours and locations will be published latest by 23rd of June.
The Final Program for discussions and workshop at BAB2023 is now pulished here.
For those doing the presentations and workshops: if you need any special technical equipment or support (projector, sound etc.) for your event at BAB2023, let us know at the Info-point in time so we can arrange it.
The Bookfair itself and most of the program (discussions, presentations, assemblies and workshops) will take place in Športna dvorana Tabor, historical sport, cultural and community center in Ljubljana. Most of the counter-cultural program in the evenings will take place in Autonomous cultural center Metelkova mesto that is celebrating 30 years of existence this year. Both locations are next to each other in the city center.
Language and translations
The official language of the gathering due to practical usefulness will be English but we encourage self-organization of translations at the events and help in this regard.
Local self-organized crew (with the help of volunteers) will be preparing lunch and dinner every day and breakfast in limited number on Saturday and Sunday. Due to large number of participants we ask you for help (through Volunteers meetings) and support with donations to be able to cover all the expenses. Also: bring your own cutlery (fork, knife, spoon) if possible!
Our capacities of free accommodation for participants are already full but we will try to find solutions for everybody that needs free accommodation when coming to Ljubljana. We are responding to all emails we receive but have in mind that due to a big amount of them it takes time (sometimes even weeks) to reply to all of them. If you still didn’t receive our reply, stay patient and wait, we will reply to all of you!
Your participation and anti-authoritarian self-organization
Balkan Anarchist Bookfair is a common space of the movement and is on all levels organized in accordance with anarchist principles of anti-authoritarian self-organization and solidarity. This means that your participation in all of the processes and at the space itself will determine how this space will look like.
There will be at least two Assemblies of Participants during the gathering where participants will be able to address different issues, organize according to the needs and also find common positions regarding political issues that are to be communicated publicly in a form of statements, reports and other documents after the gathering. Organizational assemblies for distributing specific tasks and Volunteers meetings where participants can join and help fulfilling tasks such as cleaning, cooking, technical support and safety will also take place. All the information about this and other things will be available at the Info-points of BAB2023 that will be organized before and during the gathering at the locations.
We ask all participants to register at the BAB2023 Info-points when they arrive in Ljubljana!
- 5th of July (14:00 – 22:00): A-Infoshop, AKC Metelkova mesto (Metelkova 10, 1000 Ljubljana)
- 6th of July (11:00 – 21:00): Športna dvorana Tabor (Tabor 13, 1000 Ljubljana)
- 7 – 9th July (10:00 – 21:00): Športna dvorana Tabor (Tabor 13, 1000 Ljubljana)
Self-organization, respect, mutual care and solidarity (as in all spaces and on all levels) is also expected at communal spaces where bigger groups of people will stay during the gathering. We are encouraging all of you to help local organizational team with the tasks of making this spaces clean, functional and safe.
Since we believe that all our practice as an anarchist movement should be coherent with our principles and ideas there will be no space and no tolerance for any kind of discrimination (based on patriarchy, sexism, racism, nationalism etc.) and sectarian or violent behaviour. To create free space is responsibility of all!
Financing of the event on all levels (as well as covering travel costs for those in need) is independent from any state or private institutions or funds – on the contrary, it is based exclusively on donations and autonomous funds of the Balkan Anarchist Network (created through solidarity and benefit events and other collections and donations of the international movements). If you have opportunity to organize a small collection of donations or organize a soli-event for BAB2023, please do it!
We ask all the participants of BAB2023 to donate for costs of the event at the spot itself (for food, accommodation etc.) according to your capabilities. We want to strengthen the common funds of Balkan Anarchist Network before BAB in 2024 not empty them!
Organizational Assembly of BAB2023 will create a Media group that will take care of communication with the public and international community and of making (video, photo and other) materials for the needs of reports and archiving. There will be a no-photo and no-video policy at the gathering which means that taking photos or videos at the venues will be strictly limited (no people on photos or clear consent of those). Media group will be open for your participation.
We are looking forward to meeting you all in Ljubljana! After a year of organizational and political work in connection with this gathering we are feeling encouraged by you and are sure that together we will make an important international gathering which has the potential to become a reference point for our upcoming struggles.
Freedom is our nation!
Organizational Assembly of Balkan Anarchist Bookfair 2023
In Ljubljana, 7th of June 2023