The new issue of Upping the Anti features an interview I conducted with the brilliant Sharmeen Khan, an extraordinarily committed activist and a founding editor of UTA who has been essential to the journal’s 10 years of continued publishing. Too often we don’t hear the stories of radical publications – how they started, how they continued, what challenges they faced, where they succeeded. This interview offers part of the story of UTA with lots of lessons for others trying to build and sustain radical publications of various kinds in increasingly inhospitable circumstances. As Khan says in the interview:
So many of our radical movements don’t have the capacity for – or perhaps take for granted the importance of – archiving political processes, discussions of strategy and tactics, and histories of our movements. When I think of movement histories, I often think of the smaller struggles or the failed struggles that don’t make it into history books. And for me, being a revolutionary hasn’t always been about being part of a huge, exciting movement. Often, it has been a struggle to keep things going. And I feel being able to respond, reflect, critique, or celebrate movements in particular periods helps revolutionary work in the future. It’s not to replicate tactics or politics, but to see how activists experimented with different approaches in particular times. Especially being centered in Canada, I want UTA to be used by activists to speak to other movements in different areas.