Kolektif Agora
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Kolektif Agora

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Notes to Agora

Things I’ve learned from Kolektif Agora

Us after our last event at Spasial.

If I am allowed to mention only one entity that has successfully transformed my value about knowledge through informal approaches, well, I would definitely say Kolektif Agora. Since my involvement in August 2018, I have been exposed to a variety of first-hand experiences that luckily still meets my expectation of what the young minds could contribute to the so-called collective improvement. Today, walking down the memory lane brought me back the memories of how epistemic emotion could linger even before I recognized that.

Social media brought me to Agora, vice versa. The younger version of me would not regret myself for using media a little bit wiser like what I’ve promised to my parents when I was thirteen. Prior to joining Agora in my second semester of graduate school, I was already fond of how they use Instagram as a handy platform to share ideas and evolving discourses about the city. Does this feeling change after I become an insider? Nope. Agora constantly evolves as its people do.

I owe a lot to Agora, particularly in shaping my writing skill. These days I feel weird whenever a random memory pops up from my brain, reminiscing me about my writing experience during my undergraduate career. Back then, I already loved writing, but the pieces were either too academic or rigid to deliver the puzzles inside my head. Shortly, my skill was pathetic. Looking at my piles of current drafts (which are poorly remain unfinished) and small stacks of published writings makes me think that I’ve done something right in my mid-20s to improve what writing could and should be. In this piece, I wrote some points that summarize my current point of view about communication in general (which resonates with how writing is supposed to be). I’m grateful for knowing and befriending people who practice deliberately, have a broad lexical range, edit patiently, and able to respond to current affairs wisely. I’d like to thank Naufal Rofi, Seruni Fauzia Lestari, Nayaka Angger, and Jaladri for not only editing my drafts with their magic touch but also for their time to casually talk to troubleshoot my writing problems.

I have a love and hate relationship with our discussion event which we named Diskusir. Surely a discussion is a great event to exchange knowledge, especially if it is designed to be an inclusive space where the barriers are eliminated, even though at a personal level, I mostly ended up with having uncountable yet tangled instructions dancing in my brain after the moderator closes the event. I still remember the day when Alvaryan Maulana told me, “we want people who come to Diskusir to bring home something in their mind”. Compared to many events that I’ve attended during my undergraduate days, the foundation that Agora set is truly astonishing. Other than that, Diskusir was also the reason why I attended and met inspiring people before we decided to invite them. For instance, there was a time when Dinda Primazeira and I attended a public discussion event in IFI Bandung to get some inspiration to write the terms of reference and gain insight from a potential speaker.

Until today, Agora is still a safe place to learn and unlearn. Even after we grow outside our campuses and Bandung, Agora stays as a melting pot where throwing wild ideas to sharing shitposts (oops) are legal. Behind the approved contents that we decided to post, we have learned a lot and are progressing. Recently we’ve just started our book club where we can share our recommendations and personal interpretation. Perhaps, someday we can share our reading list on our social media. Actually, there’s so much more to tell, but for now, I’ll just stop here.

Happy third anniversary, Agora!

Stay gold, stay bold.

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Ruang kolektif eksplorasi narasi urban.

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Jennie Yuwono

Jennie Yuwono

reader, writer.

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