Here, Better, Now Collection - Now: New Ethics of Community

When and Where

Thursday, April 20, 2023 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Jackman Humanities Building
170 St. George Street, 1st floor


Jarrett Zigon


Keynote speaker: Jarrett Zigon

Having theorized alongside people who use drugs for over a decade, Jarrett Zigon considers the ways anti-drug war organizing enacts what he terms “nonnormative, open, and relationally inclusive alternatives to such key ethical-political concepts as community, freedom, and care.” Focusing on his 2018 book A War on People: Drug User Politics and a New Ethics of Community, Zigon will discuss the expansive possibilities he sees emerging from resistance to drug criminalization and stigma: “In their attempts to build new worlds, anti–drug war political agonists have become keen political actors who simultaneously engage in pragmatic, policy-oriented activities while also experimentally enacting alternative relationalities, values, and possibilities.”

Snacks and refreshments will be provided before the event, beginning at 5pm.

Accessibility: Jackman Humanities Building is a physically accessible venue. Accessible single-gender washrooms are available

Part of Here, Better, Now, a four-part program that details forms of solidarity, art, activism, and policy change emerging from the overdose crisis. See additional details about this event on the Blackwood website.

Quotations from Jarrett Zigon, “A Politics of Worldbuilding,” Society for Cultural Anthropology online, December 5, 2017.


Here, Better, Now

Opening: April 19, virtual panel discussion with livestream on UTM campus
Here, Better, Now: April 20, University of Toronto St. George campus

Register to attend all events on Eventbrite.

Here, Better, Now is a four-part program that details forms of solidarity, art, activism, and policy change emerging from the overdose crisis.

Over two days on University of Toronto campuses in Mississauga and Toronto, Here, Better, Now serves as a concluding chapter of WISH YOU WERE HERE, WISH HERE WAS BETTER, a mobile program held by the Blackwood in October 2022. Through a screening, keynote speaker and panel discussions, contributors to Here, Better, Now share wide-ranging perspectives on the overdose crisis, informed by its differential effects across local sites and their histories.

Here, Better, Now also serves to launch ORGANIZING OUR GRIEF: A Collaboration in Response to the Overdose Crisis. This publication, part of the Blackwood’s Working with Concepts series, circulates strategies, reflections, and organizing principles that emerged from WISH YOU WERE HERE, WISH HERE WAS BETTER.

Free copies of ORGANIZING OUR GRIEF will be available at all events.

Contributors: Erica Cardwell, Rhiannon Carruthers, Theodore (ted) Kerr, Marcus Kuiland-Nazario, Brianna Olson-Pitawanakwat, Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers, Darien Taylor, Jarrett Zigon, Carlyn Zwarenstein  

Programmed by Fraser McCallum

WISH YOU WERE HERE, WISH HERE WAS BETTER was organized by Zoë Dodd, Theodore (ted) Kerr, and Ellyn Walker

Contributing Artists: Les Harper, Dionne Brand, Cedar-Eve, Abdi Osman

Community Partners: Moyo Health & Community Services, Peel Drug Users Network, Regeneration Brampton

Contact Information


Blackwood Gallery, Jackman Humanities Institute


170 St. George Street, 1st floor