Manifesto

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RU

"I read a lot. Before all free time in the army was used for polishing weapons, but since our weapon is the word, and I feel constant dependence on this choice, I must be ready at call the whole time".

Subcomandante Marcos

We see that the state is not able to satisfy our need for education. The need for genuine interpretation of reality around us. The situation is pathetic and it is glaringly obvious. The system of education aims at grinding out people bereaved of imagination, unable of questioning the status quo. The knowledge factory produces a commodity to be supplied to labour market. A graduate is a cog ready to take its place in the pyramid of capitalist production. In every educational institution of Belarus one is habituated to hierarchy and competition. Moreover, students are totally deprived of clear possibility to influence the learning process. All this reproduces a consumerist attitude to life, social powerlessness and loss of personal potential. All this reproduces the society that we want to change. This is why we unite for an alternative.

More that a century ago Fransisco Ferrer expressed the idea of necessity to wrest education out of the grasp of the state. We believe it is still relevant today. Our project is a small contribution to this cause.

We are sure that education plays a vital role in human liberation of every form of oppression. Only conscious activity (at personal level, as well as at the level of social movements) can be liberatory. This is why the starting point of revolutionary activity is critical speculation on the social realm. Our library is to become a resource and a space for such a speculation. Thus we implement the idea that knowledge should be 'social', i.e. be accessible to everyone and not belong to the academic elite only; and we admit that our project is not self-sufficing, but is part of a wider liberatory movement.

We believe that no theory, even a revolutionary one, doesn't serve the liberation. That's why in our library you will find books presenting a wide spectrum of liberatory ideas.

In contemporary atomised society people have forgotten how to get together for solving problems and satisfying of their demands. Over and over again we shift responsibility for our lives on others because of the lack of skills for common action. In order to regain one's liberty, one must learn how to use it. One of the objectives of our library is to create a space where people interested would find each other for discussion and common solution of social problems.

Thus, guided by the striving to create a space where people will be able to make radical actual, we have created the project "Free Thought"*.


In accordance with our objectives and convictions we have worked out the following principles of the project work:

  • Voluntarism. The project exists owing to efforts of volunteers, none of the members of the collective gets paid for their activity, and the use of the library, participation in events, etc. is free for everyone.
  • Independence. The project is not accountable to anyone other than the collective of the library.
  • Anti-authoritarianism. The project doesn't have a leader, all decisions concerning the project are taken by consensus of the collective. Any person has a right to share an opinion on the project, and any member of the collective is entitled to decide on all issues regarding the future of the library on an equal basis with other members.
  • Mutual respect and solidarity. Within the framework of the project any form of discrimination and expression of destructive superstitions of any kind are not welcome. Members and attendants of the library take the responsibility to treat each other with respect and understanding.
  • Openness. We deliberately stay in an open space, our activity is transparent, and every person sharing our principles, aims and objectives can become a member of the project.

In general sense the aim of our project is to change the reality. If you want to change the world together with us - just write us. If you don't like what we do - no problem, just do something else yourself. And - if you can - do it better than us. Only this way we will win.

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*In the future we will publish comments to the manifesto, where we will explain our position on the topics mentioned here in more detail. We would be glad to see you questions, opinions, critical comments, etc. - write a comment or send us an e-mail.