It’s not our revolution, if we all can’t dance

For us, the start of the decade 2020 symbolizes a pivotal moment in time as we face more severe threats and challenges to our social, political, ecological and physical environments. The decade started drastically with a worldwide pandemic which challenged our relation to health, safety, political systems and each other. There’s still nine and a half years to come.

Rapid development of technology keeps affecting our thoughts, behavior and ways of socializing, and in consequence, changes the normal for us in our daily lives. A more connected world also lays more weight on the individual. The algorithms that were meant to bring us together now separate us. The international agreements that bind us together bring us closer to global problems and in turn cause new societal clashes. While we have new channels for finding identities they simultaneously feel their identity threatened. Growing political polarization is laying more emphasis on understanding the effects of socio-economic background in an individual’s life.

With these simultaneous changes taking place on many fronts of society, the significance of abilities, equality and participation are highlighted. We cannot let inequalities and neglect fester as our world is transformed, but the fluorescence of equality and inclusivity must be central to our revolution. Long histories have inflamed domestic and global imbalances. Our revolution will work to erase age-old inequities, ensuring that our world is reconstructed for all to flourish and participate in rather than a select few.

We, as graduating social and political scientists, play a crucial role in how to define, face and tackle these challenges, opportunities and outcomes we will face in years to come. We are wired to be the mediators and builders of an ecologically and socially strong world and this is what lies ahead when we leave the gates of Snellmania behind.

If I can’t dance, it’s not my revolution’ became a known symbol for anarchists and feminists movements in the 1970’s in the United States. The sentence was originally inspired by Emma Goldman who was a brave Russian writer and a feminist in the early 1900’s. She took part actively in political discussions defending equality, science and enlightenment and strongly influenced anarchist political philosophy in the United States during her time. Her views of social equality are still relevant and her legacy for many social and political movements is undeniable. This iconic sentence has been an inspiration for many social movements ever since and describes the attitude of the future we as promovendi 2021 want to build for generations to come.

We want to bring the theme of the conferment ceremony into the 21st century by challenging all social scientists to consider how would our revolution look like today. How can we act in the spirit of the theme and through our own actions, change the world so that no one is left behind? We challenge you to think what  It’s not our revolution if we all can’t  dance means for you personally! No matter whether you are alumni, researcher, emeritus professor, our partner, or the participant of the conferment ceremony, we hope that you would participate in the conversation for example by submitting text, blog, vlog or art piece.