In honor of the journal’s fortieth anniversary, this special issue—the first of a two-part series—considers theories and practices of collectivity. Collectives often emerge in periods of crisis in response to new social, economic, and technological conditions. Camera Obscura’s feminist editorial collective saw its start in the 1970s, when cooperative action proliferated. In this period, collectives formed around issues of gender, race, and politics, with many organizing around forms of media production. In the last ten to fifteen years, a growing constellation of collectives has positioned artists and activists in new political and cultural formations. This issue explores the potentials and challenges of collectives through full-length analyses and short-form reflections that address such topics as collaboration in photography, cinema, and video; utopias and dystopias; history and memory; modes of “singleness” and togetherness; technology, embodiment, and intimacy; and feminist and queer collective practices in media and activism.