An Untimely Present in Europe. History, Democracy, Movements

by Isabell Lorey

End of February / Beginning of March 2014, a hundred activists from various parts of Europe gathered in Madrid for the conference ‘El nuevo rapto de Europa: deuda, guerra, revoluciones democráticas’, to discuss the topics of Debt, War and Democratic Revolutions. While a number of panels debated questions of organization in times of institutional crises and new forms of participation and the common, five workshops provided the ground for drafting a Charter for Europe. The conference participants developed both the foundations and a preamble for the entire paper, taking account of the themes of democracy, debt, commons, governance and borders.

In the following months, a first version of this Charter emerged and circulated via mumbles, skype-conferences, wikis and diverse other virtual communication channels and spaces. This version is planned to proliferate and get distributed over the next few months to discuss and further develop it. Rather than considering this proposition as a text for a future constitution, it is supposed to operate as an impulse for a potential constituent process in Europe — in a way, it is already a component of such a process. The session will provide the opportunity to continue these discussions in the light of migration, mobilities and borders in and beyond Europe.

The Charta can be read here: