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Clusters & Spokes Councils

Cluster A cluster is a grouping of affinity groups that come together to work on a certain task or part of a larger action. Thus, a cluster might be responsible for blockading an area, organizing one day of a multi-day action, or putting together and performing a mass street theater performance. Clusters could be organized around where affinity groups are from (example: Texas cluster), an issue or identity (examples: student cluster or anti-sweatshop cluster), or action interest (examples: street theater or lockdown). Spokes Councils A spokescouncil is the larger organizing structure used in the affinity group model to coordinate a mass action. Each affinity group (or cluster) empowers a spoke (representative) to go to a spokescouncil meeting to...

posted on: Dec 2, 2012 | author: organizingforpower

Sample Affinity Group Meeting Agenda

Pick a Facilitator Intros –Name and why you think participating in this action is important Introduction to the action – Who, what, when, where, how. Any Questions? Reportback from Spokescouncil – what actions are already happening? What intersections/buildings are already taken? Tactics go round – What tactics would you like to employ, is there anything you are not comfortable with? Target – What target would you like to take on, using what tactics? Resources – People, hardware, art, music, media, training. Brainstorm. Break it into things the affinity group can provide and things you might want to ask the working groups for help with, e.i. trainings or blockade tools. Decide on some Affinity Group Roles – The starred...

posted on: Dec 2, 2012 | author: organizingforpower

History of Affinity Groups

The idea of affinity groups comes out of the anarchist and workers movement that was created in the late 19th century and fought fascism in Spain during the Spanish Civil War. The Spanish Anarchist movement provides an exhilarating example of a movement, and the actual possibility of a society based on decentralized organization, direct democracy and the principles behind them. Small circles of good friends, called “tertulias” would meet at cafes to discuss ideas and plan actions. In 1888, a period of intense class conflict in Europe and of local insurrection and struggle in Spain, the Anarchist Organization of the Spanish Region made this traditional form (tertulias) the basis of its organization. Decades later, the Iberian Anarchist Federation,...

posted on: Dec 2, 2008 | author: organizingforpower