The foprop weave
The pattern language is framed within a basic weave. Warp is four zones of ‘reach’ and proximity present for a person (¿1/2/3/4). Weft is three landscapes of literacy, with regard to the self-conscious conduct of a life in society and nature (§1/2/3).
Like the dance of the weaver at the loom, the relationships of each warp and weft thread at any location must be held in the body-mind - typically, as much in the body as in the mind, this is a kinaesthetics - (through prior practice) before weaving commences; and performed and mobilised fluently in the moment.
This is not easy . . something for an evolved human to aspire to! A skillset to leave as legacy for the grandchildren!
This section has the following pages:
Landscape §1 - Material provision and access
Landscape §2 - Culture, knowing, labour power
Landscape §3 - Heart-mind, structures of feeling, valuing
Structure & agency, bodies & dancing
Patterns - Theory & practice
Patterns are defined on the basis that any pattern helps complete coarser-grained patterns ‘above’ it - which are less directly tractable, more deeply sedimented in nature or more extended - and is itself completed by those ‘below’ it, which are more fully contextualised or open to direct, autonomous action.
Within this relationship, in addition to having parents and children, a pattern generally will have siblings, which affiliate or resonate with it, imparting additional context, dynamics, texture and traction. Affiliations and resonances constitute the patterns as an intrinsically plural (#pluriversal), systemic, ‘weave’ - a semi-lattice, a distributed network - rather than any kind of simple hierarchy or set of separable ‘solutions’ or stances. The patterns - the ‘theory’, the generalised working descriptions of chunks of FoP - are a ‘weave’ because the practice needs to be a weave. The foprop weave is a frame for holding theory-of-practice.
Affiliating and resonating
The preceding paragraph spoke of affiliating and resonating. Affiliating refers to connections between patterns in one or other of three #landscapes of material organisation:
§1 Engaging and transforming the de facto material organisation of material means of subsistence and wellbeing, and their provision and access - a landscape of material relations, of forms in the real economy.
§2 Cultivating and mobilising conscious, intentional knowing and capability (‘organising’), in the (re)production of cultural and economic formations - a landscape of cultural relations, of formations of practices; and
§3 Skilful, informed, intentional responding to preconsciously-arisen perception and intention, identification and affiliation, emotional force and aesthetic impulse, in the person and in the community - a landscape of valuing and recognising, of forces of affect and affiliation.
NOTE: Here and throughout the language, the symbol § is pronounced ‘landscape’.
Each landscape implies quite distinct modes of perception and of skilled engagement with that kind of material organisation, and each landscape comprises forces of production of quite distinct kinds - material, cultural, aesthetic/affiliative - each under their own characteristic relations of production.
The material location of an activist and their practices, within the totality of FoPs, is mapped via the threefold perspective of §landscapes.
Resonating refers to an activist’s sense of their situation: their own participation and intention, and intrinsic connection between what arises and passes in four zones of proximity. Each zone (described below) has a different kind of ‘reach’ for the participant, and a particular quality and depth of movement in time.
The four zones are a way of being specific about the life-situation(s) of the activist, and the formations and courses of action in which they may engage.
In the narrative listing of the pattern language, the ordering of patterns - from infrastructures and suprastructures to affiliations and orientations - is an ordering by zone, from the most coarse-grained and sedimented to the most fine-grained and labile.
Every actor (or non-human ‘actant’) is material - has a body; has just the one body (!) which is necessarily, continuously and plurally present in all landscapes and all zones. But awareness of one or other will naturally and continually cycle to the top of the stack of attention, and ripple across them all in time - as also will any action. The pattern language is a means of engaging with that plurality and rippling across necessarily affiliated landscapes and resonating zones, in a self-conscious way, in activist practice.
Warp & weft
The vocabulary of the language - the patterns - sit within a 3x4 ’weave’ of the landscapes (weft) and the zones (warp), as represented in Figure 1 below. The affiliating and resonating of the patterns is a way of addressing both the objective material location and the subjective sense of situation, of actors; and the rippling of connections across the weave can be seen as mimicking material connections across the practices that constitute the forces of production.
The weave as a whole potentially affords a mapping of the entire forces of production - of a community, a society, an activist formation, a prefigurative economy. And the totality of alternative relations of production - each pattern pivots on and is characterised by a number of these - potentially afford a strategic practice of root and branch transformation . . the forceful production of newly-woven forces of production in material, cultural and aesthetic landscapes, all three; and thence . . an emergent, post-capitalist, generative, post-supremacist, commoned mode of production. Making a Living Economy is a revolutionary practice of living and making.
Figure 1 : The foprop weave
There is no choice regarding participation in revolutionary practice . . revolution is historically and inescapably in process - in the ecosphere, in the global economy, in everyday sense and capability, in the global South, West and East - in an utterly postmodern, disorienting, chaotic way. The choice lies in where the revolution leaves our species - our children’s grandchildren - and the planet within whose limits the world’s people subsist and seek wellbeing.
Previous | Commoning - Living Economy
Next | Forces of production, relations of production - Rigour