Institutions of the Commons

A lecture by Judith Revel. Antonio Negri in conversation with Raúl Sánchez Cedillo

Monday, 7 January 2019 - 6pm
Free, until full capacity is reached
Sabatini Building, Auditorium
Organized by
Museo Reina Sofía and Fundación de los Comunes
Image of Auditorio 200. Museo Reina Sofía
Image of Auditorio 200. Museo Reina Sofía

This encounter sets out to rethink the notion of the archive in its different facets, reflecting on the forms in which history is presented as a disputed territory in building the present.  

The passion for archives very often swings between documentary fetishism or a nostalgia for an idealised past and the desire to find the keys to our current situation. Therefore, how can we free ourselves from the dangers of a certain aestheticism which frequently offer us our “accumulative passions” and assert that the gestures to constitute, designate and improve archives can also be the critical instruments available? Thus it involves conceiving archives which are not so much documentary impressions but rather a product of common construction. For in producing the commons we stratify our experiences and preserve them; we transform the world as we form its future memory.   

These reflections on the archive are articulated around questions related to the present: How do we understand recent historical processes which, from a period called “neoliberal globalisation”, have given rise to the curtailment of rights, greater inequality and restored forms of colonial government around the globe? Consequently, and after the antagonisms which took place across the twentieth century and are still present in the experiences of occupation and unrest occurring in different parts of the world in the twenty-first century thus far, is there a workable policy of the commons which renews democracy and is able to throw into disarray or confront new authoritarian forms of exclusion and segregation?    

To reflect upon these issues, the encounter will take place in two parts: a lecture with philosopher Judith Revel, followed by a conversation between thinker Antonio Negri and activist and translator Raúl Sánchez Cedillo.


6pm. Aesthetics, Politics, the Commons: The Issue of the Archive
Lecture by Judith Revel

7:30pm. Archive in Twentieth-century Struggles and Present-day Communism in Times of Unease.
Antonio Negri in conversation with Raúl Sánchez Cedillo


Judith Revel is a philosopher, Italianist and translator and a specialist in Michel Foucault and contemporary political philosophy. She is also director of the research project Discipliner l'Archive? (2016–2018), in collaboration with the programme LabEx: Pasts in the Present.

Antonio Negri is a philosopher, post-workerism thinker and, together with Michael Hardt, the author of Empire (2002), Multitude: War and Democracy in the Age of Empire (2006), Commonwealth (2011) and Declaration (2013).

Raúl Sánchez Cedillo is a translator and editor of works by authors such as Toni Negri and Félix Guattari. Since the 1990s he has participated in different political networks and research groups from the Post-Workerism milieu. He is also part of the Nomad University and the Commons Foundation.