Augusto Cuginotti is a facilitator and activist based in Brazil whose work involves designing minimalist interventions for individual and collective learning. After not seeing what he felt was a particularly promising aspect of Brazil’s recent uprisings being represented in the media’s telling of what happened, he decided to contribute his own story. What follows is a re-print of an article he wrote for www.opendemocracy.net about the ‘Dialogue of 1,000 Tables’ that was held in four major cities across the country last June.
Protest alone can’t secure a long-term vision for society, so the straight lines of demonstrations have to be re-shaped into new patterns of participatory democracy and dialogue. This is what is happening in Brazil.
How can the energy of street protests be utilized in the long-term transformation of society? How can a revolution generate concrete proposals for change without falling back into narrow political discourse? These are questions that confront every uprising once the banners and batons are put away. Answering them requires what I call a “second-order revolution.”