A Classic Showdown

This Thursday, as editors of SAGE discussed taking a weekend dive into OWS, New York’s Mayor Bloomberg announced that the city would be clearing Zucotti Park and spraying the whole place down, implying that what had up to then been an organized and functioning protest site was some kind of cesspool. Moments later, the NYPD’s Ray Kelly proclaimed the park would then be open to the public again, but that protesters would not be able to bring sleeping bags or tents, nor would they be able to lie down or sleep. Despite all efforts—by the city, by Brookfield (the company that “owns” the park), and even by the New York Times—to portray Bloomberg’s plan as a necessary act of sanitation, few people at OWS or anywhere else saw it as anything but the city’s newest strategy to break up the protest. Almost immediately, calls for signatures and bombardment of the Mayor’s phone lines shot out into the world of social media, and entreaties for reinforcements were made: show up to the park from midnight on for a rally and, as the sun began to rise over Brooklyn, to meet and peacefully resist the city’s plan. Residents of the park began to tidy up a bit, almost as if to underscore the feeling of suspense. All across the town, all across the nation, people know something’s about to happen.

Official news breaking on the OWS website


Jason Daniel Schwartz

Austin Lord

Austin Lord is a graduate student at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, focusing in Political Ecology and Environmental Anthropology with an area concentration in Himalayan Studies. His ongoing research concerns processes of social and spatial change in areas affected by hydropower development in Nepal, with a particular focus on changing livelihoods and shifting patterns of migration and mobility. Austin spent over six months conducting fieldwork within Nepal during 2012 and 2013, focusing specifically on the upper watersheds of the Trishuli and Tamakoshi rivers, and he plans to return to Nepal in 2014-2015 to continue and expand this work. Prior to attending Yale, Austin studied Hydrology at Portland State University and received an A.B. in Economics and Studio Art from Dartmouth College. A broader collection of his photographic work (from Nepal and elsewhere) can be found at www.austinlord.com.

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