#BUILDINGTHECOMMUNE is a convergence organized to spread the tools and knowledge for self-defense and autonomy throughout our community in Durham, NC. We are dedicated to building a culture and space for autonomous resistance against Trump and his regime, the State, and capitalism. This convergence is happening across three different venues in Durham: Pinhook, Arcana, and the Atomic Fern.

The Welcoming Committee will be setup at Pinhook with materials/programming distributed there. Childcare will be provided with drop-off/pick-up at the Atomic Fern. A free lunch will be provided at Pinhook by Durham FoodNotBombs.

To close out the day, an Autonomous Assembly will be held at Pinhook from 4:00PM – 5:00PM.

While this event is free to the entire community, we hope that folks will donate to the NC J20 Defense Fund to raise money for the comrades in North Carolina who were mass arrested in the L12 Kettle during the inauguration. Please give what you can!

Sunday, 03.05.2017


  • 10:00 – 11:00 – A Brief History of 21st Century Resistance in the Triangle – Through words, images, publications, and video, this workshop will present a short and necessarily incomplete look at the last ~15 years of resistance in the Triangle, including: the anti-globalization movement; radical infrastructure projects; community organizing against the police; organizing against sexual assault at UNC; immigrants’ rights mobilizations; the encampments and building occupations of Occupy, direct action against fascists on campus, and more. This will be especially geared towards newer folks who are interested in the (recent) history of struggles they are stepping into.
  • 11:15 – 12:15 – Women/Trans* Self-Defense – Drawing from a variety of martial arts, this will be a brief introduction to practical self-defense skills. This workshop provides the opportunity to actively practice physical fighting techniques with some discussion of how to apply them in a variety of real-word contexts.
  • 12:30 – 1:30 – Street Tactics – From snake marches to highway blockades, effective demonstrations set their own agendas in the streets. Learn how to use tactics that have worked in recent movements, and develop your understanding of how they fit together.
  • 1:30 – 2:30 – Lunch
  • 2:45 – 3:45 – Alt-Fascism + Antifascist Self-Defense – During times of crisis, Fascism offers a simple solution to complexity, action against passivity, and purpose over apathy. The Trump Administration has tapped into the anxieties of a large portion of the American population and has offered itself as a simple solution to complexity. Whether the Trump Administration is fascist or not is an interesting conversation, Trump or no Trump, but what is more important is what or who can stand up to Fascism. Throughout history antifascists have emerged to combat Fascism and the many installments of “alternative” fascists. Whether it was Antifaschistische Aktion that was formed to combat the Nazis, Partisans who killed Mussolini, or the Squads that smashed the National Front, antifascism is a response, a defense to everything from street violence to national policy. During this time of crisis, a critical historical introduction to Fascism, “alternative fascism,” and antifascism seems worthwhile. Whether the discussion is on how to punch individuals in the face more often or build a movement to counter the rise of the right, antifascism is always self-defense.
  • 4:00 – 5:00 – Autonomous Assembly – The assembly will collectively create the agenda to be discussed, but we’d like to suggest that folks come prepared to discuss: announcements and projects to collaborate on; skills, resources, and spaces we can share with one another; direct issues/crises facing the community or concerns we’re feeling; and mutual aid networks (cop-watches, community medical programs, rapid-response call networks, etc.) we can begin building in Durham now. We will provide materials to help folks learn how to form affinity groups, so that they may begin autonomously building these networks themselves.


  • 10:00 – 11:00 – Digital Security 101: We Need to Talk… – Between corporations, the NSA, and the trolls of the internet our digital information traverses a seemingly endless gauntlet to its destination. All these actors attempt to slip through the cracks and exploit your information for power, profit, control, and the lolz. Drawing from the secrets and skills of nerds past and present, we hope to help you improve your digital security practices and make your email, phone, social media, and digital-self safer. With the threats we face today, we should all have something to hide.
  • 11:15 – 12:15 – #DurhamBeyondPolicing: Alternatives to Policing – As the longstanding brutalization, harassment, displacement and murder of Black and Brown people at the hands of the police becomes more and more obvious, we say: our community safety has never and cannot ever include police and prisons. We demand a new way. Come out and learn the history of past Black and Brown led self determination programs that did not include the police, & current movements to divest from violent, racially biased policing, and reinvest into community needs. We will talk about the Durham Beyond Policing campaign to stop the building of a new police headquarters in Durham and also practice scenarios of community conflict resolution and interdependence; brainstorming how to rely on one another without calling the police.
  • 12:30 – 1:45 – Radical Self Care + Community-Involved Herbalism – The Richmond Herbalism Guild is hosting a one-hour workshop that serves as an introduction to setting up and operating a public holistic health clinic or program, as well as an introduction to introducing herbs into first aid kits and street-protest scenarios.
  • 3:00 – 4:00 – Prison Resistance: Local + National Strategies – Organizers from the Raleigh-Durham Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee and Inside-Outside Alliance will share stories and strategies for organizing prisoner resistance in prisons and jails. IWOC is a committee of the Industrial Workers of the World that helped organize the national prison strike on September 9th of last year; IOA is a local Durham abolitionist group of people currently incarcerated in the Durham County Jail and their families and friends. Organizers will address the differences in organizing jails versus prisons, lessons learned, and what is called for in the struggle ahead.