- Editorial (further down)
of nº 5 of the periodical Weaving Alternativas
By the Editorial team:
Shrishtee Bajpai, Franco Augusto, Upamanyu Das y Anna Hedin.
Dear readers, It is our pleasure to share Global Tapestry of Alternatives’ fifth newsletter issue with you. This is our first thematic newsletter on “Power and Democracy”, with the intent to explore varied dimensions of power and democracy with focus on two broad points:
 The role of Representative democracy within the framework of the Nation-State, its crisis of legitimacy and the co-optation by the pro-capitalist perspectives and increasing fascist tendencies;  The practices of radical democracy or direct democracy taking place in social movements, grassroots organizations and community processes, along with the emerging frameworks of power for radical transformations. We intend to bring out the tensions and complementarities between local, national and global dimensions.
Our contributors, who spread across Central Asia, Africa, South Asia, Europe, and Latin America, explore challenges posed by statist-capitalist dominations but also how people are organising on the ground to subvert these. Şervîn Nûdem’s piece on building democratic autonomy in Rojava, powerfully illustrates peoples’ struggle in a war-torn region and the process of building-up self-organisation based on the pillars of radical democracy, ecological justice, and gender liberation. The question of imagination of democracy from a more-than-human perspective is beautifully argued in Simon Mitambo’s piece that describes peoples’ processes of reasserting the traditional and customary decision making process that are rooted in earth justice. Mitambo’s piece is complimented by Patricia Botero-Gómez’s piece from Latin America, where communities in the margins are weaving a politics of ‘life-place’ and regenerating their bio-territories. Both these pieces explore how the political boundaries of the current nation states are accidents of history or are results of colonialism and how communities are challenging that. Ashish Kothari’s piece further explores the perils of liberal democracy and argues for alternatives by giving several examples from India and the rest of the world that are embodying radical democracy in their everyday practices. Two of the pieces explore how the movements and networks are challenging the currently predominant notion of what power is, which is ‘power-over’, power to dominate over, or hierarchical power. Justin Kenrick and Eva Schonveld from Grassroots to Global Assemblies explain their process of creating spaces of learnings, innovation, rituals and creativity, in order to prefiguratively model a politics of wholeness from the grassroots to the global. Our final piece by Frédéric Vandenberghe of Multiconvergence Alliance describes their attempts to experiment on radical democracy by initiating a Global Citizen’s Parliament.
All the pieces weave together powerful examples of organizing from below offering visions of Pluriversal democracy: where all people, rather than being under a political occupation of globalized, capitalist, hetero-patriarchal, liberal democracy, have the right to exist as they are, with their own ways of being, doing, and thinking. They also offer interesting lessons on transnational organizing while also thinking through power and alternatives.
We invite you to engage, reflect and dialogue on these ideas. We see it as a start to a long-term process of knowing each-others’ work, engaging with ideas, facilitating collaborations and initiating co-writing, co-learning and dialogical processes.