We bring cutting edge scholars and practitioners from a wide range of fields and contexts to share what they are learning about the common good and the best means of pursuing it.

Upcoming & Recent Events

From Denial to Repair: Addressing Genocide in the 21st Century

A virtual panel discussion offering a brief general history of the Ottoman Genocide of its Armenian, Assyrian, and Greek citizens, as well as the ongoing impacts of genocide denial. The issue of reparations and its import for the pursuit of justice will be addressed and related to other cases of mass human rights violations and the use of transitional justice.

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To Hear & Be Heard: What Restorative & Transformative Justice Have to Offer Us

This interactive keynote will discuss how we can shift our punitive culture towards a culture of healing-centered accountability. We will look at the limitations imposed on us through urgency culture, and what tools restorative justice and transformative justice offer our communities.

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Desire Lines: Body, Land, Memory, and Place

The Hampshire College Dance Program, Theatre Program, and the Ethics and the Common Good Project host a series of artist talks featuring visionary choreographers, theater makers, and interdisciplinary artists from across the United States who activate the intersections between embodied performance and site-based practices.

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Decolonizing Our Relations: Healing Justice & Breaking the Cycle of Violence

Ignacio Rivera, founder and executive director of The HEAL Project, offered the kick-off lecture of the fourth annual Engage conference, “Decolonizing Our Relations: Healing Justice & Breaking the Cycle of Violence.”

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Engage! 4th Annual Conference, Second Community Day of Education

The fourth annual ENGAGE! Conference will also be Hampshire’s second Community Education Day in 2020, a day of interactive community learning activities. We will be focusing on the question, “What does it take to dismantle the violence that intersects our lives?”

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Past Events

Mutual Aid + Organizing: The Future We Need Starts Now

A conversation with activists and organizers exploring questions about mutual aid, collective care, and organizing in the time of COVID-19.

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The abbreviation "CoCo" stands in for "Community Commons" above a speech bubble with the word Conversations. This logo corresponds to the CoCo Convos dinner series.

CoCo Conversations

Every Wednesday, 6:00-7:30PM, APL
A weekly Wednesday dinner, discussion and skill share open to Hampshire students, staff and faculty. No need to register—drop in any time!

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Event flyer for CoCo Open House, 2/5/20

Community Commons Open House

Join us for food and conversation, meet Community Commons program staff and peer mentors, learn about the new CoCo weekly event series and how you can get involved.

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Living and Learning Community (LLC) Reunion

Thursday November 21st, 2019
Students,Staff, and Faculty that lived or helped manage a Living and Learning Community (LLC) were invited to a reunion to re-connect and building community with one another through food, DIV III presentations, a Q & A session with upper DIV students, and more.

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ENGAGE! 3rd Annual Community Day of Education

Thursday October 24th, 2019
The 3rd annual Engage! Community Day of Education is a day-long learning opportunity for all Hampshire community members. This year our focus is on rebuilding bridges, reconnecting with one another, and gaining skills to communicate across our differences. It’s crucial that our many voices are represented, heard, and engaged.

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NEX(US): Hampshire Voices

Week of October 21st – 24th 2019
This week-long residency with artist and activist Marty Pottenger includes story circles, interviews, workshops and will culminate with a workshop performance at Engage! Community Day of Education.

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Text of "Ethics and the Common Good Division III Showcase" on green and white background with leaf graphic on a squiggly red dotted line

2nd Annual Division III Showcase

Monday, May 6th at 4:30pm, FPH West Lecture Hall
Join us for our 2nd Annual Ethics and the Common Good Division III Showcase. We’ll be celebrating the multidisciplinary projects of some of our Division III students connected to the Ethics and the Common Good Project. Come hear about their work and learn how their research is processing, navigating, and transforming the systems they’ve interrogated, pushing us to redefine what we believe and value. All are welcome to attend.

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Close up photo of multi-colored balloons

Another Door Opens: ECG Community Celebration

Monday April 29th, 4:30-6:30pm, Prescott Tavern
Congratulations to our ECG community – we made it! Join us as we celebrate all that we’ve been through, collaborated on, and accomplished together this year. We’re especially excited to honor our Division III students. This is ECG’s fourth year on campus, so for the students who came in the same year we did, it feels like we’re graduating with you. We look forward to sharing space and stories, as well as cake!

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Image of Zapatista caracol in black line drawings with red and black triangle border

Autonomy Is in Our Hearts with Dylan Fitzwater 12F

Wednesday, April 17th from 5-6:30pm, Roos Rohde House
Join Dylan Eldredge Fitzwater 12F, author of Autonomy Is in Our Hearts: Zapatista Autonomous Government through the Lens of the Tsotsil Language, for a discussion of his book which gives a detailed account of this autonomous government system based on hundreds of testimonies from within the Zapatista base communities. Autonomy Is in Our Hearts provides a comprehensive analysis of Zapatista autonomous government that unfolds a new political language for understanding their movement. It is one of the first and most in-depth studies of the political categories of Tsotsil and an indispensable guide to the inner workings of Zapatista autonomous government.

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Burgundy flyer with yellow scribble and text describing Philip Boehm's talk

Philip Boehm on Translating Dangerously Ambiguous Narratives

Thursday, April 11th from 6-7:30pm, FPH ELH
Literature like life is full of ambiguities, and their presence in a text helps convey the complexity of human relations. For Gerard Manley Hopkins an ambiguous line may be intended to help the reader approach something ineffable–while in a poem by Osip Mandelstam it might conceal a message deemed so dangerous by the state it could cost a poet’s life.So what happens to these ambiguities when we as translators take a text out of one context and plop it into another? How do we preserve modify transform or metamorphose danger?

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Michael O'Neill and Alexis Gideon floating in space shuttle with pink/blue lighting

Princess: Out There

Wednesday, March 20th from 6:30-8:30pm, Art Barn Studio 1
Princess is a performance art duo, a collaboration between Alexis Gideon and Hampshire alum Michael O’Neill that uses music as the backbone of a multi-disciplinary practice. Princess explores queerness and the concept of masculinity. Simultaneously gay, straight, queer, masculine and feminine, Princess embodies the fluidity and coherence between the seemingly contradictory. ‘Out There’ (2019; 4K video, live performance; 55:20min) is a concept video album and live performance piece by the band Princess. It explores the role men ought to be playing during the current cultural reckoning of misogyny. The video’s science fiction narrative explores the power of the Divine Feminine through collaborations with JD Samson, visual artist Jennifer Meridian, and the band TEEN.

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Blue text with white backlight on burgundy background that says Community Potluck

Community Potluck

Friday, February 22nd from 11:30am-1pm, Hampshire College Art Gallery
Bring yourselves and – if you can (but we’ll supplement so NO pressure if you can’t!) – something to eat and share together in the Gallery this Friday. Sit and chat with colleagues and friends, take in the current exhibition, read your book in the lounge section, make a college to contribute to the community installation, or just BE … TOGETHER. All welcome – students, staff, faculty, alumni, & community members.

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Walidah Imarisha

Visionary Futures: Octavia Butler, Science Fiction and Social Change

Monday, November 12th at 5:30pm, FPH Main Lecture Hall
Walidah Imarisha is an educator, writer, public scholar and spoken word artist. She has co-edited two anthologies including Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction Stories From Social Justice Movements. Imarisha’s nonfiction book Angels with Dirty Faces: Three Stories of Crime, Prison, and Redemption won a 2017 Oregon Book Award. She is also the author of the poetry collection Scars/Stars, and is currently working on an Oregon Black history book, forthcoming from AK Press.

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Cara Page

Psalm for the Mismeasured and Unfit

Monday, October 15th from 6-7:30PM, FPH West Lecture Hall
Join us for a lecture with Cara Page, a Black Feminist Queer cultural/memory worker and organizer, who is curating community installations to shed light on historical and contemporary uses of policing and surveillance through scientific racism & the Medical Industrial Complex.

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Camille A. Brown

Moving Culture, Dancing Justice: A Conversation with Camille A. Brown

Friday, September 28th from 4:30-6pm, Robert Crown Center
Join us at the Five College Dance Annual Fall Lecture to hear Camille A Brown, dancer and choreographer, in a conversation moderated by Professor Deborah Goffe on Brown’s career and community engagement initiatives as social justice interventions.

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Jacqueline Patterson

Environmental & Climate Justice with Jacqueline Patterson

Monday, September 24th from 6-7:30pm, FPH Main Lecture Hall
Join us for a dinner and lecture by Jacqueline Patterson, Director of the NAACP Environmental and Climate Justice Program, on Monday, September 24th and continue the conversation on environmental and climate justice with a workshop and discussion on Tuesday, September 25th.

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Green background with words "Jackson Rising: Participatory Deomocracy, Solidarity Economy, and the Struggle for Racial Justice in Jackson, Mississippi

21st Annual Eqbal Ahmad Lecture & Symposium

Thursday, November 8th from 4-6pm, Robert Crown Center
Join our intergenerational panel of brilliant political strategists Rukia Lumumba, Dr. Safiya Omari, and Charles Taylor as they discuss the history of organizing for economic democracy, Black self-determination, and political transformation in Jackson, Mississippi and beyond.

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Transparent image of Written on the Body panel

TRANSparency: Speaking Our Truths

Thursday, October 18th at 5:30pm, FPH West Lecture Hall
Written by and for trans and non-binary survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence, the new anthology Written on the Body offers support, guidance, and hope for those who struggle to find safety at home, in the body, and other impossible-seeming places. This collection of letters written to body parts weaves together powerful narratives of gender, identity, and abuse, caringly collected and tenderly held.

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Div IV: Hampshire in Action poster

Telling Stories, Shifting Culture

Saturday, June 2nd from 10:45am-12pm, Kern 106
A panel discussion at this year’s Div IV: Hampshire in Action on where we can find the support we need to stay engaged in creating the change we want to see in the world, and what tools and practices enable us to cultivate critical connections, build resilient relationships and strengthen communities.

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Yellow, blue, and green threads with text Story of our Values, ECG Community Gathering

Story of our Values: ECG Community Gathering

Tuesday, May 8th from 1-2:30PM
Celebrate the end of the year with Ethics & the Common Good! We’ll be holding an intentional space to get grounded, connected, nourished, and creative. Together we’ll explore the connections we’ve made with ECG this year, enjoy food and music, and decorate quilt blocks that will come together in a collaborative community quilt.

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Ethics & the Common Good Division III Panel

Division III Panel 2018

Thursday, April 26th from 4-5:30PM, FPH ELH
Join us in celebrating the work of Division III students connected to the Ethics & the Common Good Project, as we hear back from five of these students about their exciting multidisciplinary projects.

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Pink Victorian house is home of Sexual Minorities Archive

Sexual Minorities Archive: Queering the Commons

Thursday, March 22nd from 4-6:30PM
Join us for an off-campus field trip to one of the oldest and most unique LGBTQ grassroots archives in the country. The SMA is the home of archivist Ben Power and an incredible resource for research, academic projects, and internships – come explore this queer commons of literature, rare periodicals, music, and art from every era of LGBTQ life.

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New Economics and the Commons

Tuesday, March 27th, 12-1PM, FPH Faculty Lounge
Join David Bollier, Reinventing the Commons Program Director, and Rachel Moriarty, Director of Operations, to learn more about the Schumacher Center’s efforts to envision a just and sustainable local economy.

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End of Policing book cover

The End of Policing

Wednesday, Apr 4th, 12-1PM, FPH WLH
Join alum Alex S. Vitale F84 at a lunch talk with his new book, The End of Policing, interrogating the over-reliance on police and our restorative justice alternatives.

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Five artists jumping

Boundaries Between Bodies: Incarceration, Transmission, and Performance

Friday, Feb 23rd, 4-6pm, FPH ELH
Boundaries Between Bodies brings artists Reggie Daniels and Amie Dowling to facilitate workshops and present projects that are striving to begin a collective process of political struggle where inside and outside artists are working side by side for a transformation that addresses the legacies of racism, segregation, disenfranchisement, and mass incarceration.

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Andreas Weber

Toward a Poetic Ecology

Nov 2, 2017 | 5:30pm
FPH | Main Lecture Hall
A public lecture with German biologist and eco-philosopher Andreas Weber

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Perry Zurn

Let My Questions Be a Pry Bar: Sketching a Disability Critique of Curiosity

Wednesday, October 4th from 12-1pm, ASH Lobby
A lunch talk with Perry Zurn, Assistant Professor of Philosophy American University

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Being and Becoming Professionally “Other”: Identities, Voices, and Experiences of U.S. Trans* Academics

Wednesday, October 4th at 4pm, West Lecture Hall
A talk with Erich Pitcher, Associate Director of Research and Communication with Diversity & Cultural Engagement at Oregon State University

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Linguistic Bodies and the Materiality of Microaggressions

October 12th from 12-1:30pm, ASH Auditorium
A lunch talk with Elena Cuffari, Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Worcester State University

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Sharing Cities book logo

Sharing Cities: Activating the Urban Commons

An interactive presentation and workshop with Tom Llewellyn, Strategic Partnerships Director at Shareable.net

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TESA's Rise Up: Game of People and Power

TESA Collective: Rise Up!

A game night with the Hampshire alum-led TESA Collective, featuring their newest game.

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No More Heroes: Grassroots Strategies for Accountable Organizing

A public lecture with journalist and organizer Jordan Flaherty How can we fight back in this moment? How do we build a better world? What does accountable organizing look like? What is the role for people with privilege in liberation movements? A conversation with journalist and organizer Jordan Flaherty about his new book “No More […]

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Wall of SOURCE Healing and Resilience

Unveiling of Wall of SOURCE Healing and Resilience, a collaborative Division III project by Mikaela Gonzalez. Through this process, Mikael brought students of color together to envision and create a permanent public mural as an intentional act of community building for resilience in the present and future.

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Feminism, Science, and Corporeal Politics: the Case of Affective Kinship

A lecture by Dr. Victoria Pitts-Taylor Feminist critiques of biological approaches to kinship have often condemned their determinism–their treatment of biology as fixed genetic blueprint for social organization–and their ignorance of, or dismissal of, familial structures that do not follow heteronormative reproductive imperatives. But a focus on how kinships are socially shaped is not sufficient […]

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Care/Work: Queer Disabled Femme of Color Magic

A performance with Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha In this performance presentation, poet Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha will read from new and recent work focused on queer hard femme disabled poetics of color: the intersections of working class femme smarts and survival, crip world, femme on femme of color intimacies, and the rebellions and vulnerable strengths found therein. […]

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Week of Education and Engagement: Looking Back Moving Forward

Facilitated by Kristen Luschen and Diana Fernandez with support from DS4Si and many staff and faculty on campus Looking Back, Moving Forward” is a week of reflection and education that launches a year-long process to involve the community in shaping the contours of Hampshire’s commitment to anti-racism. The goal of this week is to strengthen […]

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Theory of Brain Network Control: First-Principles Computations and Ethical Considerations

A lecture by Dr. Danielle Bassett, Skirkanich Professor of Innovation at the University of Pennsylvania The treatment of psychiatric disease and neurological disorders is a critical frontier in human health. Current treatment regimens include drugs, brain stimulation, and cognitive-behavioral therapy. In each case, these treatments can be thought of as ways of changing the activity […]

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Doing Away with Juan Crow: Two Standards for Just Immigration Reform

Lecture by Jose George Mendoza Professor of Philosophy at UMASS Lowell The aim of this talk was to look at the implications “Juan Crow” immigration policy has for an ethics of immigration. It argues that, much like its predecessor Jim Crow, Juan Crow is not merely a condemnation of federalism, but of any immigration reform […]

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Social Justice Summer Intern Reception

This dinner formally recognizes the ingenuity, passion, and achievement of our students who received summer internship grants. The grants were funded by programs like the Ethics and the Common Good Project, Civil Liberties and Public Policy, Critical Studies in Childhood, Youth, and Learning Program, and Community Partnerships for Social Change.

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Indigenous Knowledge and Climate Change

A lecture by Kyle Whyte, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Michigan State University In this talk, Dr. Whyte addresses the moral and political issues concerning climate policy and Indigenous peoples, as well as the ethics of cooperative relationships involving Indigenous peoples.

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What We Mean When We Talk about Land: Climate Change, Colonialism, and Indigenous Resistance

A lecture by Erica Violet Lee, Organizer with Idle No More; Member of Canadian Youth Delegation to COP 21 In the face of a colonial climate catastrophe, Indigenous women are at the forefront of impact and resistance. As we articulate connections between the land and our bodies, our struggle for liberation from extractive industry becomes […]

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How Does It Feel to be a Problem? Racism and the “Immigration Crisis”

A lecture by Natalie Cisneros, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Seattle University What should be done about the “problem” of immigration? What do we mean when we talk about the “national immigration crisis”? The perceived “problem” of immigration and debates about how to solve it have taken center stage in national discourse leading up to the […]

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Exploring the Guantanamo Bay Detainee Library Beyond Its Books

A talk with Muira McCammon Which books line the shelves of the Guantánamo Bay Detainee Library? Why does library access matter to people imprisoned at Guantánamo Bay, and in other carceral contexts? What rhetorical, social and political work do pop cultural representations of the Detainee Library perform? What happens when we bring values of intellectual […]

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Does Curiosity Make Us Human? & What are the Ethical Stakes?

A discussion with Perry Zurn, Visiting Assistant Professor of Applied Ethics Thomas Hobbes once said it is curiosity that distinguishes humans from animals. But does this ring true? And what are the ethical issues that arise when we make this claim? Is it possible for animals (or machines, or even plants for that matter) to […]

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“Not Even a Unicorn Prison”: Gender Segregation and the Carceral State

A talk with Perry Zurn, Visiting Assistant Professor of Applied Ethics Cece McDonald and others have said that no prison is beneficial—not a men’s prison, a women’s prison, a trans prison, “not even a unicorn prison.” This workshop investigates the history of gender segregation in prisons, the typical treatment of trans and gender non-conforming prisoners, […]

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The Futures of Abolition

A panel discussion in celebration of Active Intolerance: Michel Foucault, the Prisons Information Group, and the Future of Abolition, eds. Perry Zurn and Andrew Dilts (New York: Palgrave, 2015), with chapters by Hampshire faculty Stephen Dillon and Falguni Sheth. Panelists staged a conversation between Foucault’s legacy and the challenges of prison activism today. Speakers include: […]

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Art, Healing, and Transformative Justice

A panel with ECG Summer Interns The Ethics and the Common Good Project supported 18 summer interns this year, in collaboration with several other programs on campus. The students here today will give you a taste of some of this amazing work. Whether it’s in Amherst, Holyoke, Cuba, or Rwanda, these students have listened to […]

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Countdown to the Paris Climate Summit Panel: What’s at Stake?

The forthcoming climate summit in Paris – officially the 21st Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Climate Change (or COP-21) – will no doubt prove the most significant climate negotiations of modern times. Parties to the convention, including the US, China, the EU, India, Brazil, and most other nations, have pledged to […]

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Social Justice Summer Intern Dinner

This dinner formally recognizes the ingenuity, passion, and achievement of our students who received summer internship grants. The grants were funded by programs like the Ethics and the Common Good Project, Civil Liberties and Public Policy, Critical Studies in Childhood, Youth, and Learning Program, and Community Partnerships for Social Change.

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Inaugural Event: Interactive Public Presentation on Ethics & the Common Good with Liz Lerman and David Bollier

The interactive public presentation featuring author and Commons activist David Bollier and choreographer, performer, and educator Liz Lerman. The event is open to the public and free of charge. David Bollier is an activist, writer, policy strategist, and a leading thinker on alternative economic and social models based on the concept of the Commons. His writing, research, […]

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