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article / 17/07/2017

From steel to skin

A four-handed raw manifesto by Nanda from Vedetas, transhackfeminist brazilian server and Nadège from Kéfir, a feminist libre tech co-op.

We already are servers.

We don’t just need new hardware, things made out of steel. It’s not that they aren’t important. The material form of electronics can be a portal to learn and transgress. We embody diverse identities (femenine, black, trans, no-binary…) that fight every day and inherit Latinamerica’s historical servitude. We believe this is an opportunity to establish resistence, also social and economical equity that was never given to us. The possibility of crossing borders, creating kinship and, as servers in a more technocratic context, to be mistresses in tech and knowledge forged by ourselves and not as a mere reflex of what we observe.

We are providers, yes. But we seek interdependence. The only verticality we accept is that of a backbone, a backbone that sustains us, where there is no hierarchies. A relationship of fullness that can stagger, a vertebra can stagger, but that doesn’t disable the fullness, the ecosystem that learns how to embrace diversity and it’s hidden nature and nurture.

In a context of so much political tension, so much violence, the urgency that collectives, feminists, activists and social movements have is chronic and we offer shelters, digital shelters. But after the storm, we call for a moment to take a deep breath and imagine together what we can build together through porosity.

When we talk about needing help or giving help, we are talking about opening. All help is exchange, synergy. We invite to shift together the concept of “benefit party” and “services” towards the idea of “mutual aid”, to “communal gathering”.

Our actions don’t encompass more people, more women, more bodies connecting to digital tech because we acknowledge that some, many, will never have access to them or maybe they don’t want to. We strive and understand technologies from the guts, seeking to return to the skin, ancestry, to what makes us feel, what moves us, what connects us, through meaningful and vital actions, through actions that sustain and interconnect, to whom doesn’t contact with tech, digital tech.

Finally, we would like you all to think of this as a celebration and appreciation of what we build, create and hold together. This needs to be nurtured in it’s potential. Also as a gesture of shortening distances and disparities. Dance, have fun and celebrate as free bodies that connect in conspiracy for more tender, more affective revolutions through feminist and libre tech.