Burn Pile Press at the Karpeles

August 14, 2015 4 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

MetroJacksonville's newest intern, Kassidy Lankford explores the world of BurnPile Press at their monthly film night presented at the Karpeles Manuscript Library in Springfield. Join us for a look at the wonderful radicals in our midst after the jump

When the majority of people hear the word ‘anarchy’, thoughts of violence, disarray, and animalistic behavior come to mind. We tend to think of riots, shootings and danger. While this definition of anarchy is accurate in places like Somalia, there are many other ways to interpret anarchist ideas.

Burnpile Press is a community-founded organization started in 2012 with the intent to distribute anarchist literature throughout Northeast Florida, without cost to its consumers. For those involved with Burnpile Press, anarchy is the highest form of democracy. They believe that the world we live in should be free of domination, hierarchy, and oppression, and they actively pursue a life without these things. They support and encourage ideas such as local ownership, worker cooperatives, practicing democracy in the workplace and squatting abandoned properties, just to name a few. Burnpile Press takes part not only in producing and distributing progressive literature, but also in organizing and participating in demonstrations and protests, planning and participating in events around the community and more. One of the many events they organize is an intimate monthly movie night, occurring at various locations around Jacksonville, where a small group of people gather to watch a documentary.

Movie night with Burnpile Press goes a little something like this: coffee, popcorn, and a wide variety of hot teas are laid out for anyone to grab, smiling faces fill the room and a welcoming atmosphere can be sensed upon the moment of arrival. A thought-provoking documentary is screened, followed by a personal discussion of the film and what it means to the viewers, opening up a new kind of understanding of both the movie and each other.

The most recent movie night took place at the Karpeles Museum on Aug. 7, at which CitizenFour, a film about former CIA employee Edward Snowden, was screened. The film focuses on Snowden infamously leaking information about the National Security Agency’s surveillance of U.S. citizens, giving the population access to the unnerving information of what is occurring right above our heads. After the showing, the group of filmgoers sat in a circle on the floor of the beautiful Karpeles Museum and talked about what they had seen, discussing how being constantly and closely monitored has affected their daily lives, interfered with their communications, and altered their relationships, before discussing what would be an ideal situation and what they could do to change the present state of surveillance.  

This is the kind of thing that Burnpile Press is in favor of abolishing. They want the citizens of the USA, and the world at large, for that matter, to have complete liberty, community and equality, in every aspect of the words. They formed their organization with the purpose of raising awareness about things such as privacy, liberty, racism, workplace inequality, and so many more important things that need to be changed in today’s society. Burnpile Press are currently working on several projects and events, all of which can be viewed on their website, www.burnpilepress.org, along with information about their belief system, the meaning of anarchy, and articles and zines about their mission.

photos and text by kassidy lankford