Beyond Hierarchies: A Free University Day school Report

Assorted Aberdeen Anarchists and members of Aberdeen Against Austerity set off from Aberdeen in the early hours of Sunday morning, looking forward to what promised to be an interesting and productive day mixed with discussion and ideas.

Beyond Hierarchies: A Free University   Day school was an event whose purpose was to examine power relations   and the institution of hierarchy in today’s society and looking at   what models of non- hierarchical organisation could replace them   following a format of talks and workshops.

The day, called by Dundee Uncut and held at The Old Mill, kicked off   with talks from two speakers separated by a workshop session with   attendees breaking in to small groups of four to list individual examples of power and control, focusing on four main areas – industry, society, politics, and environment.

The groups split again with each group tackling one of the four main areas.

After a break for lunch, we were treated to a talk by Professor Tony Cox, author of Empire, Industry, and Class: The Imperial Nexus of Jute 1840-1940, on protest, looking in particular at local labour history and forms of organising and protest.

For more on Tony Cox – Click here:

Tony’s talk was then followed by Harry Giles’ interactive theatre presentation

“This is Not a Riot” which explores ideas and perceptions around the use of violence.

For more information visit

The final talk of the day looked at the cooperative movement and how   this business model has been put in to practice by both big and small   organisations.

The workshop groups then reconvened for a final session, this time looking at possible alternatives to the institutions of government and   control.

All in all a splendid day.

Those involved in putting it all together deserve a big thank you.

Report by DI


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