This article isn't intended as a review of the evening, rather as a reminder that these are important discussions we should be having on a more regular basis. Although what took place was necessarily limited by a panel format and a theatre-like setting, it was empowering to be discussing issues of such vital significance to the lives of many activists in a public forum. With the demise of TVCA as an open forum of discussion, those interested in direct action on climate change have lost an entry point to a tactic that has much wider social and political implications - a tactic that radicalises through the active embodiment of resistance.
New avenues to pursue a desire to put one's body on the front line are available: anti-austerity marches and demonstrations can provide that space. But there can be limits in those spaces; imposed by the fact that such action can just be a radical enactment of demands its participants are making on existing socio-political structures - not action that directly challenges those structures in the way that action on climate change can through its desire for an entirely new alternative set of structures.
It's confusing, and these are big issues, and I want a space to discuss them - a space that I felt I had in the not too distant past. Not within the confines of a TVCA meeting, nor the academic clique of a reading group - but the social aspect of the pub that facilitated engaged conversation. I want to be having more of these exploratory conversations - and I don't think I'm alone. Whatever I thought of Just Do It as a film is irrelevant - the evening was worthwhile because it created a discursive space that the Oxford activist scene sometimes lacks; overly formal perhaps - but not invalidated by its formality.