I haven't had a reply from John Jordan as yet about coming to talk - but I'm still working on it.
Just thought it might be handy for anyone who wants to invite speakers to see what I wrote to him... I'm sure you're all more capable than me of writing a decent letter and this isn't a particularly good or correct way of doing it.... But I know we're all busy and if anybody wanted to copy and paste this (with appropriate amendments) as a way of saving time and thought then thats fine. As I say, I'm not suggesting that anyone SHOULD put this - just that this can be used as a template if you are busy and want to be quick about it.
It was great to hear what you had to say at the Activist Geographies event in Leeds on the 16th and to chat briefly afterwards.
Perhaps you recall the brief conversation with myself and Andy regarding our 'Tate problem' and the current Black Dogs project in which we are testing modes of knowledge sharing (or as we tentatively put it, a 'free art school') in Leeds. As we said at the time, we would be really interested in having you come and talk with us and perhaps to present as part of our 'program' and I would like to take this opportunity to see if you might be interested and to formally invite you. The initial stage of the project is continuing for another two months - if you could find time in your busy schedule to come and see us at any point during this period it would be really great I think. As we said at the time, we cannot unfortunately offer a fee - but we can pay any travel expenses and offer you our hospitality in the form of some friendly chat, a meal and a few drinks and a place to stay if you would like to.
If you like, you can gain some insight into the kind of things that have been happening and the conversations we've been having in the 'Black Lab' at http://blacklableeds.blogspot.com/ - Hopefully you will be able to see that it is very much a discursive environment rather than a place for passive 'send and receive' learning - We have found that those who choose to 'present' or share elements of their practice find the experience both thought provoking and challenging (in the most positive sense). We hope that if you were to choose to come and visit us it would be both a pleasurable, fun and fulfilling experience.
If you are unable to make it at this time or feel that it's not for you then we quite understand. In the former case there may well be other opportunities in the future and it would be great to keep that option open. In the latter - keep up the great work and thanks again for the inspiring presentation. Your refreshing observation that the left are crap at having fun has certainly stuck with me - its been a great thing to remember when I'm up to my ears in dry academia!
Thanks again John.
I'll hope to hear from you in the near future.
Very best regards,
(on behalf of Black Dogs)