On Time

Ailton KrenakAnticolonialism

Translated and introduced by Alex Brostoff.

On March 6, 2020, at the seventh annual São Paulo International Theater Exhibition (Mostra Internacional de Teatro de São Paulo), a panel on “Anticolonial Perspectives” convened around the question, “What can we still imagine together?” At the opening roundtable, “On Time,” Brazilian Indigenous intellectual and activist Ailton Krenak addressed the occasion and its audience directly. In the remarks that follow, transcribed by Sonia Sobral, Krenak theorizes the polysemic possibilities and ambivalent effects of the encontro, a Portuguese term for an “encounter,” “meeting,” “assembly,” or “conference.” At once imbricated in ongoing colonial practices and imbued with the potentials of a collective subject, the encontro both intensifies and deters ecological disaster. “We are an unsustainable civilization,” Krenak contends, “We are unsustainable.” And yet, the prospect of encountering each other and continuing to imagine otherwise sustains the possibility of another tomorrow.

Read More