The Peace is Over

A doumentary about the brazilian’ high school students against the state. 

In the end of 2015, high school students mobilized against the government’s proposal to reformulate the education system the state of São Paulo in Brazil. The students didn’t agree with the vertical imposition of the project, they considered the project arbitrary besides not beneficial to the student class. As a consequence, the students started street demonstration and then they occupied schools as a form of struggle, strategy influenced by Chilean secondary students who had done the same in 2006. The documentary The peace is over (Acabou a paz: isto aqui vai virar o Chile) was directed by Carlos Pronzato in 2016 and shows the process of the students’ struggle in São Paulo in parallel with the struggle of the Chilean students highlighted in the documentary The Penguin Revolution (A revolução dos pinguins). 

In October of 2015, the state secretary of education Herman Voorwald released the government’s proposal of the state of São Paulo regarding the reformulation of the public school system, based on a "reorganization" since the closure of ninety-four school units, distributed throughout the state. The schools would be divided into cycles, so that each unit would only have one cycle of education. The affected students, about 311,000, would be forced to be transferred to other school units, often overcrowded and far from home. But the "reorganization" was based on the two billion reais cut in education made by the state government. 

The documentary The peace is over shows the process of struggle of secondary students against the "reorganization" of the education system proposed by the state government of São Paulo. The demonstrations began on October 6th, 2015 with marches in the main points of the city of São Paulo, extending for a month. The students’ strategy change occurred in November with the influence of the Chilean students' fighting practices in 2006, based on school occupations. So on November 9th a group of students occupied a state school in the region of Diadema and the next morning, another group occupied the Fernão Dias State School in the city of São Paulo initiating a mobilization process that would occupy more than two hundred schools throughout the state in a short period of time. 

In the first images of the documentary The peace is over, there is an assembly of students, they are reading a letter, a manifesto, they use the jogral strategy: one student reads a document aloud, others repeat even the circular information for all. Then images of street manifestation alternate with testimonials from students, teachers, parents and journalists who accompanied and sympathized with the students' struggle. The goal of director Carlos Pronzato is to understand and demonstrate the dynamics of the movement, how it came about and, mainly, how it shapes itself in its organization and struggle strategies. 

The struggle strategy of the students of São Paulo is interesting from the point of view not only organizational but also political because they managed to mobilize a large number of high school students and have the support of a significant part of society in a short period of time. The clash against the repressive and controlling apparatus of the state occurred with the use of a dynamic with organizational practices that the "political authorities" were not prepared to deal with. There were no leaders of the movement, built autonomously and horizontally. The students used the tools of social media to communicate, organize and produce their own dissemination content. 

The greatest merit of the documentary filmmaker Carlos Pronzato is to highlight and maintain the protagonism of students in the process of occupying schools. The students organized themselves efficiently and autonomously without the direct influence of other sectors of society. Obviously, they received support from various segments and social organizations. What is interesting is that the school occupations created similar "TAZ" (Temporary Autonomous Zone) where groups of individuals come together for a common purpose from straightforward non-hierarchical relationships, with complete freedom, with new relationships and social practices being intensified. 

To paraphrase some verses by the Brazilian poet Carlos Drummond de Andrade, the high school students of São Paulo State who participated in the process of struggle against the "reorganization" of the state system of education proposed by the state government owned “several hands” and “world feeling”. They won the victory over arbitrary and non-consultative impositions of a state controlled by private and economic interests. For them, the classroom will be transformed into something small, because by transforming the school environment, the world changes. Finally, the song verses sung by the students in the documentary The peace is over still echo: “All the schools/ fight schools/ stay ready/ If any closed we occupy” (Todas as escolas/escolas de luta/fica preparado/se fechar alguma a gente ocupa).

Complete movie

MC Foice and MC Martelo "Escola de Luta"

0 comentários: