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Manuel Castells emphasizes that Occupy Wall Street began on Internet social networks, but was also crucially about the occupation of public space as a “space of autonomy” (168). He contends that the movement built a new form of space that involved a mix of “space of places” (the body on the street) and the “space of flows” on the Internet (Ibid). These occupied spaces also created what Castells calls a “new form of time” by interrupting the routine of daily life and creating a “parenthesis” with an undefined time horizon (169)–an indeterminacy that seems to resonate with the notion of virtuality.

Terannova’s sense of the virtual as “the spectre of the improbable, the fluctuation” that is evoked by the relation between the real and probable (20) articulates this notion of a temporal parenthesis in which the undetermined thrives between the given (class inequity, capitalist green) and the “(allegedly) unlikely” (10)  future at the end of a class struggle. The indeterminacy of living at these sites on a day-to-day basis, and Occupy’s disparate, frayed dreams of “not a piece of this society, but the whole of a different society” (188) are a parenthesis much like the “swerve;” Occupy Wall Street was/is a virtual movement in a doubled sense: virtual as a digital form and virtual in its undetermined mutations.

However, following Victor’s comments, I would add that these movements are also virtual as “spectres of the improbable” because they expose haunted everyday temporalities. Terranova theorizes the virtual as a question of how informational flows displace linguistic representation and cultural identity from the centre of cultural struggle in favour of mutations and movement (10). Yet, the lack of people of colour involved in Occupy Wall Street, and the gendered forms of violence that women involved in this movement and in the Arab Spring revolutions faced demonstrate how virtuality and race/gender/class are entangled, as the “parenthesis” of an undefined time horizon is not afforded to certain gendered or racialized bodies; the “interruption” of everydayness, for some, is not an interruption of daily life but the rehearsal of determined, historical oppression.

As Victor pointed out, the creation of “public space” is coded with race, gender, sexuality, and class. (Why is a movement that “demanded everything and nothing at the same time” (185) read as a pivotal surge of outrage, while #Blacklivesmatter is criticized for being exclusive?) More broadly, how does the occupation and creation of public space –both in the material and digital form—involve forms of displacements and perhaps settlements?

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