Conversations on Collective Futures
Columbia University Press
In times of crisis, mutual aid becomes paramount. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, new forms of sharing had gained momentum to redress precarity and stark economic inequality. Today, a diverse array of mutualistic organizations seek to fundamentally restructure housing, care, labor, food, and more. Yet design, art, and architecture play a key role in shaping these initiatives, fulfilling their promise of solidarity, and ensuring that these values endure.
In this book, artist Marisa Morán Jahn and architect Rafi Segal converse about the transformative potential of mutualism and design with leading thinkers and practitioners: Mercedes Bidart, Arturo Escobar, Michael Hardt, Greg Lindsay, Jessica Gordon Nembhard, Ai-jen Poo, and Trebor Scholz. Together, they consider how design inspires, invigorates, and sustains contemporary forms of mutualism—including platform cooperatives, digital-first communities, emerging currencies, mutual aid, care networks, social-change movements, and more. From these dialogues emerge powerful visions of futures guided by communal self-determination and collective well-being.