RLS–NYC AT THE LEFT FORUM 2017
June 2-4, 2017 - John Jay College, New York
This year’s Left Forum, the largest annual leftist gathering in North America, will be taking place from June 2-4 in New York City. This year’s Left Forum comes at a particularly important political moment, as different forms of right-wing nationalism take hold not just in the US but across the world. In support of alternative political visions from across North America and Europe, we’ll be hosting the following five panels this year:
Mapping the Left in Europe and North America
Saturday, 10:00am-11:50am, Room 1.107
Recent euphoria, particularly over the rise of SYRIZA and PODEMOS in Europe and the Bernie Sanders campaign in the US, has quickly turned to despair for many on the left. How might we characterize the current state of the left in Europe and North America? How can we build our strength and position ourselves to win while simultaneously fighting ongoing neoliberal austerity and the rise of the nationalist right?
Catarina Príncipe (Bloco de Esquerda-Left Bloc, Portugal)
Cornelia Hildebrandt (RLS–Berlin)
Ethan Young (Left Labor Project, New York)
Albert Scharenberg (RLS–NYC), chair
After the Women’s March: Next Steps Toward a New Feminist Movement
Saturday, 10:00am-11:50am, Room L2.84
The women’s march that followed Trump’s victory was hugely impressive and even historic. On the heels of a presidential campaign marred by overt sexism as well as an overly narrow vision of elite feminism, what can we make of this recent upswell in feminist organizing? How we can support a new feminism that embraces all oppressed minorities while basing itself in a material notion of class politics?
Sarah Leonard (The Nation magazine)
Maria Poblet (LeftRoots, Bay Area)
Carla Murphy (Echoing Ida, New York)
Stefanie Ehmsen (RLS–NYC), chair
Sanctuary Cities for Whom? Racial Justice Movements in Montreal, Berlin & New York
Saturday, 5:20pm-7:10pm, Room L2.85
The idea of the “sanctuary city” has taken hold across North America since the election of Trump. However, it remains unclear just what a sanctuary city is, and what are its possibilities in the service of defending civil and social rights and implementing radical reform. Will the sanctuary city movement embrace empty cosmopolitan rhetoric, or can it move us toward a more radical vision of racial justice in the city?
Tahir Della (Initiative for Black People in Germany)
Will Prosper (Montréal Noir)
Shatia Strother (Families United for Racial and Economic Equality, Brooklyn)
Kazembe Balagun (RLS–NYC), chair
Karl Polanyi’s Socialist Vision
Saturday, 3:30pm-5:15pm, Room 1.121
Commonly heralded as a champion of liberal thought, many are surprised to find that Karl Polanyi, writer of The Great Transformation, actually considered himself a socialist. How should we understand his contributions to socialist thought in the current conjuncture, particularly as this relates to his notion of “freedom in a complex society”?
Michael Brie (RLS–Berlin)
Margaret Somers (University of Michigan)
Nikil Saval (N+1 magazine)
James Hare (RLS–NYC), chair
The Final Frontier: Deep-Sea Privatization and Local Resistance
Saturday, 3:30pm-5:15pm, Room 1.65
Deep-sea mining is at the cutting edge of economic exploitation of the oceans, with coastal communities in the global South being used as testing grounds. The ecological, social, economic hazards remain unknown. Facing these risks, local communities are leading the resistance and demanding a stop to such extractivism unless suitable social and ecological standards are met.
Kai Kaschinski (Fair Oceans)
Christoph Spehr (DIE LINKE, Germany)
Christina Tony (Bismarck Ramu Group, Papua New Guinea)
Natassa Romanou (NASA-Goddard Institute for Space Studies), chair
Download flyer here.
As the current crisis between the United States and North Korea demonstrates, tensions between nuclear powers are on the rise, and new global risks are posed by the possibility of cyber-attacks and terrorist groups targeting nuclear facilities. While most people would agree that they are a threat to every civilian, atomic weapons are the only weapons of mass destruction that have not yet been prohibited by law.
A majority of......
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