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Daily Archives: October 16th, 2009

Chantal Mouffe

Chantal Mouffe

The Future of Democracy: Prospects and Challenges

 

Which way forwards for the European Union?

This event has been organised by Chantal Mouffe (co-initiator of the Spaces of Democracy and the Democracy of Space network).

Friday, 13 November 2009, 10.30am to 1pm
The Pavilion, University of Westminster
115 Cavendish Street, London W1W 6UW

RSVP Charlotte Regan
Email:  charlotte.regan@my.westminster.ac.uk

Round-table discussion:
Thomas Ferenczi (Paris)
Fernand Keuleneer (Brussels)
Kalypso Nicolaidis (Oxford)
Frieder Otto Wolf (Berlin)

The Round-table will be chaired and introduced by Chantal Mouffe (London)

Now that the Irish have finally voted in favour of the ratification of the Lisbon treaty, a decisive step in the consolidation of the European Union might hopefully take place. After years of uncertainty – initiated by the rejection of the Constitutional Treatise by the French and the Dutch – concerning the future of the European institutions, the possibility now exists to envisage the future in a more optimistic way. But a successful future requires fostering among the people of Europe a real allegiance towards the European project. To be sure, with the financial crisis many people began to realize the importance of being in the EU, however its popularity remains at a very low ebb. A few decades ago things were different though, and the European project appeared as expressing the aspirations of many people and as able to awaken their enthusiasm. What has happened to bring about this change? Which mistakes have been made to explain the current disaffection with the EU? Many explanations have been offered which range for the geo-political transformations linked to the end of the Cold War, the resistances against a too rapid process of enlargement, imposed from the top without popular consultation. The criticism most often rehearsed is the lack of legitimacy of the EU due to its democratic deficit. What can be done to reverse this trend? Which model should European unification adopts? How could common forms of identification be established among the citizens of Europe, so as to mobilize their affects around a European vision that does not negates their differences? Those are some of the issues that will be discussed by a panel composed of specialists from various countries and several disciplines.

For “The Spaces of Democracy and the Democracy of Space” network website: http://www.spaceofdemocracy.org

For Radical Politics Today magazine:
http://www.spaceofdemocracy.org/resources/publications/magazine/magazine.html

For more on the book What is Radical Politics Today? published in 2009 by Palgrave Macmillan: http://www.spaceofdemocracy.org/resources/resources_bookstoread.html

Jonathan Pugh
Senior Academic Fellow
Director “The Spaces of Democracy and the Democracy of Space” network
School of Geography, Politics and Sociology
5th Floor Claremont Tower
Newcastle University
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE1 7RU
United Kingdom
Honorary Fellow, The Centre for the Study of Democracy, University of Westminster

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Wall Street

Wall Street

WALLED STATES, WANING SOVEREIGNTY

 

A special lecture by
Wendy Brown, University of California, Berkeley

Wednesday, 25 November 2009, 14:00 – 16:30
Berrill Lecture Theatre, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes

Since the fall of the Berlin Wall, dozens of walls have been erected between and within nation-states. Why? What are these walls doing–materially, performatively, symbolically? What is their relationship to the erosion of state sovereignty? What is the nature of state and popular investments in them, especially when they don’t ‘work’?

Professor Brown’s lecture will include responses from:

Professor Stuart Elden, Department of Geography, Durham University
Dr Raia Prokhovnik, Department of Politics and International Studies, Open University.

A reception will follow this event from 4.30pm onwards.

All are welcome; attendees should RSVP to Sarah Batt at a.s.c.batt@open.ac.uk

Further details, including a flyer for the event, can be seen at:
http://www.open.ac.uk/ccig/events/keynote-event-wendy-brown

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Radical Politics

Radical Politics

WHAT IS RADICAL POLITICS TODAY?

 

What is Radical Politics Today?

Debate and book launch

1.30pm, 25th November 2009, Canada House, Trafalgar Square, London, SW1Y 5BJ

Hosted by:
Catherine Fieschi (Director of Counterpoint, The Think Tank of the British Council; http://www.counterpoint-online.org/)
Jonathan Pugh (Director, the Spaces of Democracy and the Democracy of Space network; http://www.spaceofdemocracy.org)
Dan Porter (Marketing Executive, Palgrave Macmillan).

Those who are interested in attending should contact: counterpoint@britishcouncil.org

The discussion on 25th November will include … Doreen Massey, Saskia Sassen and David Chandler.

NEW BOOK:

What is Radical Politics Today?

Published November 2009, by Palgrave Macmillan

Edited by Jonathan Pugh, Senior Academic Fellow, Newcastle University

A crisis makes you re-think your life. The recent economic crisis is no exception. All of us are now thinking how the world could be run differently. Despite this, a radical alternative has hardly emerged to mobilise the masses, which begs the question: What is radical politics today? In this book, leading academics, politicians, journalists and activists attempt to pinpoint an answer, debating the issues facing radical politics in the 21st Century. Rarely united in their opinions, they collectively interrogate the character and spirit of being radical in our times.

Including original contributions from Zygmunt Bauman, Frank Furedi, Paul Kingsnorth, James Heartfield, Terrell Carver, Clare Short, Edward W. Soja, David Chandler, Hilary Wainwright, Dora Apel, Michael J. Watts, Jason Toynbee, James Martin, Jeremy Gilbert and Jo Littler, Doreen Massey, Gregor McLennan, Tariq Modood, Nick Cohen, Amir Saeed and David Bates, Alastair Bonnett, Ken Worpole, Sheila Jasanoff, Nigel Thrift, Will Hutton, Saul Newman, Chantal Mouffe, David Featherstone, Alejandro Colas and Jason Edwards, David Boyle, and Saskia Sassen.

The project is ongoing, through the Radical Politics Today magazine and events (see http://www.spaceofdemocracy.org)

To purchase the book:
Order online at http://www.palgrave.com/products/title.aspx?PID=375741
http://www.amazon.co.uk/What-Radical-Politics-Today-Jonathan/dp/023023626X
or visit your local bookseller.

Hardback 978-0-230-23625-7
Paperback 978-0-230-23626-4

Those who come to the book launch, or attend Spaces of Democracy and Democracy of Space events more generally, will get 25% off the paperback purchase price.

Keys themes of ‘What is Radical Politics Today?’

*A wide-ranging survey of the spirit and character of radical politics at this pivotal moment in history.
*Thirty influential commentators write original 3000 word essays.
*Offers thought provoking and often conflicting opinions.
*Accessibly written for the general public and student audiences.

Recommendations for ‘What is Radical Politics Today?’

‘This is a bold, brave and timely book. As we emerge, blinking into the light after three decades of neo-liberal darkness, Jonathan Pugh has put together a collection of essays that will provoke and provide clues to the question of what comes next; what indeed is radical politics today ?’ — Neal Lawson (Chair, Compass)

‘This collection is a model for the kinds of discussion we need to move forward.’ — Michael Hardt, co-author of Empire, Multitude and Commonwealth

‘ … we need this sort of sustained critical discussion of the kinds of alternative politics available to us.’ — James Tully (University of Victoria).

‘…a major contribution to the ongoing debate on the problems of our times.’ — Lord Bhikhu Parekh

‘ … what sort of Left can win hearts and minds in this moment of crisis? The answers to these important questions are the stuff of this excellent book.’ — Noel Castree (Manchester University).

‘With impeccable timing, this volume provides a stimulating range of perspectives on what radical politics can offer during this period of crisis and change. It deserves to be widely read and debated.’ — Ruth Lister (Loughborough University).

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Credit Crunch

Credit Crunch

SOUNDINGS CREDIT CRUNCH SEMINAR

 

We have just put online several of the papers from our May 2009 Soundings seminar (co-organised with the OU) on the credit crunch. Contributors are:

John Clarke, John Harris, Neal Lawson, Gavin Poynter, John Urry, Michael Rustin, Sylvia Walby

To read contributions go to http://www.lwbooks.co.uk/ReadingRoom/public/creditcrunch.html

For information on Soundings 42, The killing fields of inequality, go to http://www.lwbooks.co.uk/journals/soundings/current.html

To subscribe to Soundings for only £20 – by standing order only – download the standing order form at http://www.lwbooks.co.uk/standingorder.html

You can send the form in to the freepost address shown at the bottom of the form – no stamp is needed.

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Imperialism

Imperialism

IMPERIALISM AND THE WORLD TODAY

 

‘Uncaptive Minds’ Public Meeting hosted by The Commune

The next of our London forums will be looking at modern imperialism. The coming to power of the Obama administration in the United States has led many people to believe that there will be a change in American foreign policy: yet the western military presence in Central Asia and Latin America is set to increase; the Eastern European nuclear defence shield has been abandoned with the aim of securing Russian support against Iran; and the war in Afghanistan continues unabated.

What is the strategy of imperialist domination today? With the rise of China and India, are there one, two or many imperialisms? What forces really challenge imperialism? Join the debate with speakers:

Andy Higginbottom
Latin America solidarity activist

Marko Bojcun
Ukrainian Marxist and writer on Eastern Europe

From 7pm on Monday 19th October at the Lucas Arms, Grays Inn Road, near King’s Cross station

Details:

http://thecommune.wordpress.com/2009/09/29/imperialism-and-the-world-today-19th-october-london-forum/

Email uncaptiveminds@gmail.com  

http://www.thecommune.co.uk/

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Pink Curtain

Pink Curtain

BEYOND THE PINK CURTAIN?

 

Winter Colloquium: Beyond the Pink Curtain? Eastern European Sexualities, Homophobia and Western Eyes

22nd January 2010

Birkbeck Institute for Social Research

Sexualities, as aspects of identity and as part of the public language of nation, are a controversial feature of post-communist transition in Central and Eastern Europe. Radical political changes have led to the emergence of new social actors, such as the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) movement, the airing of new discourses about sexuality, as well as the eruption of new social conflicts and divisions.

This interdisciplinary Colloquium will  bring together scholars in the social sciences, history, Slavic and other area studies, as well as activists from LGBT communities, to examine the relationships between gender, nation and sexuality. How, for example, did the emergence of revised national identities after 1989 relate to new conceptions of non-normative gender and sexuality? What were the local dimensions of the ‘lesbian and gay question’, and why did they develop? How did queer sexualities in this region evolve historically? And what influence does that historical legacy have today? What are the specificities and particularities of Central and Eastern European sexual identities, within the region and compared with Western and other non-Western formations?

There will be a screening of the film “Beyond the Pink Curtain” (2009) and a discussion with Director Matthew Charles at 3pm on Thursday 21st January in the Birkbeck Cinema, 43 Gordon Square.

Numbers are strictly limited, so please register early.

Cost, includes vegetarian lunch:  £25 Standard, £10 Birkbeck staff and all students.
Payment is by credit/debit card – Standard Booking Form   Birkbeck Staff & all Students
Friday 22nd  January 2010, Room 541, Birkbeck College Main Building, 9.30am – 5pm (Registration 9.30 in Room 538)

Film screening – Thursday 21st  January 2010  Registration for the free film screening – email Julia Eisner j.eisner@bbk.ac.uk

Detailed program and abstracts:
http://robertkulpa.com/index.php?/projects/BISR-Colloquium.html

Info: http://www.bbk.ac.uk/bisr/news/pinkcurtain

Organiser: Robert Kulpa (roberto@kulpa.org.uk)

All the best,
Robert Kulpa
0044.785.999.5074
http://robertkulpa.com

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

Radical Pedagogy

Radical Pedagogy

CENTRE FOR THE STUDY OF EDUCATION AND WORK – UPDATE 12th OCTOBER 2009

 

OUR MANDATE: The Centre for the Study of Education and Work (CSEW) brings together educators from university, union, and community settings to understand and enrich the often-undervalued informal and formal learning of working people. We develop research and teaching programs at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (UofT) that strengthen feminist, anti-racist, labour movement, and working-class perspectives on learning and work.

Our major project is APCOL: Anti-Poverty Community Organizing and Learning. This five-year project (2009-2013), funded by SSHRC-CURA, brings academics and activists together in a collaborative effort to evaluate how organizations approach issues and campaigns and use popular education.

To change your subscription settings, visit http://listserv.oise.utoronto.ca/mailman/listinfo/csewbroadcast

For more information about CSEW, visit: http://www.csew.ca

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NOW AVAILABLE! UPDATED & EXPANDED EDITION OF “INTEGRATING EQUITY, ADDRESSING BARRIERS: INNOVATIVE LEARNING PRACTICES BY UNIONS”

The Labour Education Centre is pleased to announce the publication of the updated and expanded new edition of the report “Integrating Equity, Addressing Barriers: Innovative Learning Practices by Unions”.

Available on LEC’s website: http://www.laboureducation.org  Printed copies are available for $10 plus shipping / 25% discount for 10 or more copies.

The second edition features 11 new sketches as well as updates for most of the 35 sketches included in the first edition.

Original 2-4 page “sketches” provide a sampling of programs from different parts of Canada. The 46 sketches include programs from local, provincial and national unions, from central labour bodies at the labour council, regional building trades council, provincial and territorial federation and level of the Canadian Labour Congress. Some are joint union-management initiatives; some are community-sponsored. Each sketch outlines how the program started and evolved, impacts and what’s next, contact information and references. The 190-page report includes an introduction and additional references.

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THE POLITICS OF OLDER ADULT EDUCATION: POSSIBILITIES FOR TRANSFORMATIVE PRACTICE

Marvin Formosa, University of Malta
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
12.00-1.30 pm
Room 7-162, OISE/University of Toronto
252 Bloor St. West, Toronto

In recent decades, late-life learning has developed into a global success story. Whether holding a ‘top-down’ administrative arrangement or embodying a culture of self-help, there can be no doubt as to the triumph of programs in meeting the educational, social, and psychological needs of older persons. However, a cautionary note must be warranted. Research has reported that in many cases programs of older adult education tend to function as yet another euphemism for glorified occupational therapy that is both conservative and oppressive. Moreover, practice models seem to be running the risk of becoming obsolete as societies embark on a ‘late-modern’ (as opposed to a ‘modernist’) model of the life course in which the sequential division between learning, work and retirement is becoming increasingly blurred.

This seminar puts forward the suggestion that older adult education must go through a cultural revolution to remain relevant to current ageing lifestyles as well as become an agent of transformative change. Seven possible directions are outlined: embracing a transformational rationale, ensuring that access overcomes class, gender and ethnic biases to become more equally distributed, guaranteeing that teaching and learning strategies are suited to older persons, promoting ICT knowledge whilst making greater use of e-learning techniques, extending its activities to frail and physically dependent elders including those in residential/nursing homes, and organizing activities that promote intergenerational learning.

Marvin Formosa (European Centre of Gerontology, University of Malta) is currently writing a handbook on ‘Lifelong Learning in Later Life’ (Sense, 2010). He has published on older adult learning in the journals Education and Ageing, Ageing International, Recerca, and Malta Review of Educational Research. His most recent publications include ‘Class Dynamics in Later Life’ and ‘Supporting Family Careers of Older Persons in Europe’. This year, Marvin Formosa is a visiting scholar in the Adult Education and Community Development Program, OISE/UT.

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VINCENZO PIETROPAOLO – HARVEST PILGRIMS EXHIBIT

Launch: Sunday, October 18
1-5 pm
Workers Arts and Heritage Centre
51 Stuart Street
Hamilton, ON
905-522-3003
http://www.wahc-museum.ca

Acclaimed Canadian documentary photographer and social activist Vincenzo Pietropaolo has been photographing migrant agriculture workers and recording their stories since 1984 – in the process travelling to forty locations throughout Ontario and to their homes in Mexico, Jamaica, and Montserrat.

Pietropaolo has borne witness to these “harvest pilgrims” — tens of thousands of migrant workers who arrive in the spring, leave in the fall, are the backbone of the agricultural industry in Canada — yet continue to be denied many of the basic workplace rights that protect other workers in Canada.

Meet the artist at the book launch and photo exhibition of HARVEST PILGRIMS, Sunday October 18.

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TRANSFORMING CRITICAL PEDAGOGY: REFLECTIONS ON THE FREIRE CONFERENCE GATHERING IN SPAIN, OCTOBER 28

*Do you look at the world and feel that things need to change?
* Do you watch the news everyday in sadness and despair waiting for that one news item that would give you hope for the world you live in?
* Do you believe that another world is possible?

Then come join The Transformative Learning Centre at OISE for our 2009-2010 Dialogue Circles Series.

Upcoming events include:

*Transforming Critical Pedagogy: Reflections on the Freire Conference Gathering in Spain, Emear O’Neill, Wednesday October 28
* Buy-Nothing Day, Wednesday November 25
* Inter-faith Dialogue, Wednesday December 16

Everyone is invited!
Hosted in the 7th Floor Peace Lounge at OISE, 252 Bloor St. W (at St. George) from 4:00 to 5:30 pm, last Wednesday of every month, Sept 2009 to April 2010.

For more information, visit the TLC website at: http://tlc.oise.utoronto.ca

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ISRAEL / PALESTINE: FREEDOM OF SPEECH, FREEDOM TO TEACH

A conference on elementary, secondary, and post-secondary education – rights and repression

Friday, October 16, 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Saturday, October 17, 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Steelworkers Hall, 25 Cecil Street, Toronto

Friday, October 16 Panel:
7:00-9:00: Sharing Stories of Repression and Fightback Panelists include Javier Davila, Adnan Husain, Golta Shahidi, and Palestinian educator, Saed Abu-Hijleh

Saturday, October 17 Programme: 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

9:00 – 10:30 – Keynote addresses: Yafa Jarrar and Sherene Razack

11:00-12:30 – Sectoral Workshops
*Post-Secondary Faculty – Academic Research, Conferences, Publication and Organizing
*Post-Secondary Faculty -Teaching and the Curriculum
*Elementary and Secondary Teachers – The Classroom, the Curriculum and Finding Spaces within the Union
*Student Organizing
*Community

Lunch – 12:30 – 1:30 – vegetarian with vegan and gluten-free options (included in registration)

1:30 – 2:30 – Legal Context: Know Your Rights as Activists – Yutaka Dirks and Irina Ceric
2:45 – 4:00 – Plenary
4:00 – 4:15 – Closing Comments

Registration: $5–$30 sliding scale (incl. lunch with vegetarian, vegan,and gluten-free options)

For further information and to pre-register, contact us at freedomtoteach.registration@yahoo.ca.

*Organized by Educators for Peace and Justice, Faculty for Palestine, and Students Against Israeli Apartheid*

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INDIGENOUS SOVEREIGNTY WEEK – TORONTO

Forums, art, performances and discussions supporting and celebrating the Indigenous struggle for land and sovereignty on Turtle Island

http://www.defendersoftheland.org/toronto

October 26 – November 1, 2009

Invited speakers include:
* Arthur Manuel, Secwepemc Nation
* Algonquins of Barriere Lake
* Shawn Brant, Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory
* Pauline Shirt, Plains Cree
* Russell Diabo, Mohawk Nation, Kahnawake.
* Grafton Antone, Oneida
* Vicki Monague, Beausoleil FN

Featured events:
* Opening Ceremonies with Men’s and Women’s Drum Circle, Youth slam poetry and speaker
* Dear Harper: A Canadian Colonial History
* Justice Redone
* Struggles for Land
* Haudenosaunee Storytelling
* The Great Indian Bus Tour. Exploring the indigenous history of Toronto
* Building the Circle Stronger: Traditional feast, Sharing Circle and Next Steps meeting
* and more …

Full schedule will be updated shortly. Please visit our website often.

Email iswtoronto@gmail.com for more.

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VIDEO: SOLIDARITY! RESISTANCE! CHANGE! ORGANIZING WORKING CLASS COMMUNITIES

Steve Williams in Toronto, October 2 2009

Steve Williams is co-director of the California based group POWER: People Organized to win Employment Rights, which since the late 1990’s has been one of the most important Worker’s Action Centres in the U.S., and co-authour of the book Towards Land, Work and Power: Charting a Path of Resistance to U.S.-led Imperialism.

* Moderated by Stephanie Ross – Prof. Labour Studies, York University.
* Sam Gindin – Visiting Packer Chair in Social Justice at York University.

A Left Streamed Video: http://www.socialistproject.ca/leftstreamed/

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PLANNING MEETING FOR DAY OF ACTION, CAMPAIGN FOR A POVERTY-FREE ONTARIO 

On behalf of the over 300,000 members of the Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario, we would like to invite your organisation to participate in and help shape the campaign for a Poverty-Free Ontario, bringing students, community and labour organisations together in a united call for the government to invest in people by supporting basic social services and standards. Your organisation has been contacted to participate because you have endorsed the campaign for a Poverty-Free Ontario or have expressed interest in doing so.

On October 15, we will be holding a planning meeting to discuss how we can coordinate our organising and build for the day of action. The planning meeting will be held on:

Thursday, October 15
12 pm
Ryerson Student Center
55 Gould Street, Toronto

We are pleased to invite a representative of your organisation to join us for a catered lunch and a discussion of how to effectively mobilise to challenge our government’s spending priorities and call for investment in people.

Please RSVP soon, and notify us of who is able to attend. We will be following up in the next few days to confirm participation. Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any further questions or concerns.

In solidarity,
Shelley Melanson
Chairperson Canadian Federation of Students – Ontario
office – 416.925.3825 x 29
cell – 416.882.9927
http://www.cfsontario.ca

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ONTARIO FEDERATION OF LABOUR EMPLOYMENT EQUITY SEMINAR

November 9 & 10
Doubletree International Plaza Hotel
655 Dixon Road, Toronto

Mobilizing for equality rights makes our unions, the trades labour movement and communities stronger and better for everyone. To increase our actions the OFL is holding a seminar on Employment Equity.

Although the Employment Equity legislation was dismantled in 1995 by the Conservative Harris government, the labour movement has continued to push for employment equity gains through collective bargaining over the past decade.

The seminar will assist advocates through political action and collective bargaining, dispel myths and focus on the positive realities of employment equity and help overcome the challenges of implementing employment equity.

The registration fee is $150. The deadline for registration is October 26, 2007.

For more information or to register, contact Catherine Corcoran, Secretary
p: 416-443-7656, f: 416.441.0722, email: ccorcoran@ofl.ca

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FORUM – FROM CRISIS TO JUSTICE: LABOUR AND COMMUNITY WORKING TOGETHER FOR AN EQUITABLE AND INCLUSIVE ECONOMIC FUTURE

Saturday, November 21, 2009
Sheraton Centre Hotel
Toronto, Ontario

The population of Ontario is becoming more diverse. By 2011 most new entrants to the labour force will be peoples of colour. Yet in percentage terms, fewer and fewer peoples of colour are joining unions.

To bring about a deeper familiarity between unions and communities, unions must work in solidarity with peoples of colour on issues that are important to these communities, in order to build long lasting relationships of trust, respect and sustainability.
Why? The survival of the labour movement is at stake.

The Forum will:

* Link activists from unions and community organizations to advance a shared vision for social, economic and environmental justice in our workplaces and in our communities;

* Develop best practices and policies that can be implemented locally, provincially and nationally through collective bargaining and form the framework to lobby for effective provincial and national employment equity and for organizing legislation.

* Increase public awareness of the potential for “green-collar” jobs to provide equitable pathways out of poverty, curb global warming, and transform the economy.

The registration fee is $130 per delegate and cheques are payable to “OFL From Crisis to Justice Forum”. Delegates can register on-line at http://www.ofl.ca
Registration and payment must be received by November 1, 2009.

Additional information and forms can be found on the OFL website: http://www.ofl.ca or contact us directly by calling Paulette Hazel at 416.443.7667 – toll free 1.(800).668.9138 or e-mail phazel@ofl.ca

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HERE’S THE SKINNY ON WHY WAL-MART IS SO EVIL (AND HAS MADE SUCH A KILLING)

By David Moberg, In These Times.

Wal-Mart’s origins in the Ozarks created a patriarchal and religiously-tinged corporate culture that dominated the American marketplace.

http://www.alternet.org/story/143009/here%27s_the_skinny_on_why_wal-mart_is_so_evil_(and_has_made_such_a_killing)

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ORGANIZED AGAINST LABOR: ATTACKS ON UNIVERSITY UNION CENTERS

Source: Inside Higher Education

Conservative group has been filing information requests and complaints against university centers that work with unions; AAUP charges violation of academic freedom.

To read more: http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2009/10/12/labor

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NEW REPORT! ALLIANCES FOR CHANGE: ORGANIZING FOR THE 21ST CENTURY

Workers’ centers, youth-based action groups, and urban justice organizations are among those changing the face of traditional community organizing. Many of these groups engage a range of approaches beyond targeted campaign work from service delivery to media ownership to voter engagement. This report looks at nearly a dozen examples of organizing efforts rising to scale and adapting to the urgent challenges and political opportunities at the beginning of the 21st century.

http://www.buildingmovement.org/news/entry/93

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MICHAEL MOORE WAS RIGHT: PROGRESSIVES DON’T WATCH ENOUGH TV

By Vanessa Richmond, AlterNet.

Why TV is ground zero for understanding American culture — the 9 best shows on air that you should be watching.

http://www.alternet.org/story/143178/michael_moore_was_right%3A_progressives_don%27t_watch_enough_tv

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REPORT – CANADA IS FALLING BEHIND OTHER COUNTRIES ON SOCIAL INNOVATION

Cross-sector collaboration needed to advance social innovation in Canada

October 8, 2009 – Canada is falling behind other countries, such as Australia, the UK and the US in recognizing the value of social innovation (SI) for addressing complex public policy issues.

A new report from Canadian Policy Research Networks (CPRN), Social Innovation in Canada: An Update by Mark Goldenberg, Wathira Kamoji, Larry Orton and Michael Williamson highlights the urgency of the social challenges before us, such as climate change, sustainability, poverty and globalization, particularly in the midst of a global economic downturn, and points to the importance of fostering SI as a solution.

The report notes that while governments in Canada have acknowledged the importance of social capital and the social economy, and have been relatively active in these areas in recent years, Canada has missed opportunities to encourage SI by failing to develop adequate models for public support, engagement and funding. The report calls on Canadian leaders to establish a cross-sectoral national strategy to advance SI in this country.

To read more: http://www.cprn.org/doc.cfm?doc=2057&l=en&utm_source=20091008&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Newsletter

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MURRAY DOBBIN’S BLOG – THE VALUE OF TILTING AT WINDMILLS

It’s easy to get demoralized these days with so much going wrong around the world. So it is incredibly encouraging to see a campaign for justice and workers’ health and safety prevail against supposedly insurmountable odds.

That is how the “odds” would have been described a year and a half ago for anyone musing about taking on the asbestos industry in Quebec.

To read more: http://murraydobbin.ca/2009/10/08/the-value-of-tilting-at-windmills/

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REQUEST FOR PAPERS – COSMOPOLITANISM AND COLLECTIVITY: CULTURAL REPRESENTATIONS VS. THEORIES OF COMMUNITY IN THE 20TH AND 21ST CENTURY

We are inviting paper proposals for an accepted seminar at the 2010 Annual Meeting of the American Comparative Literature Association (New Orleans, April 1-4). Please do not submit proposals directly to the organizers–see specific instructions for online submission below. Papers must be submitted before November 13. Note: seminars at the ACLA are typically held over the course of three days–participants are expected to attend all meetings.

Session description: “Cosmopolitanism and Collectivity: Cultural Representations vs. Theories of Community in the 20th and 21st Century”

This panel intends to interrogate the relationship between collectivity and cosmopolitanism by studying the disjoints between the accounts of both concepts produced by culture on the one hand and theory on the other. The ultimate goal of this panel will be to complicate our understanding of the possibilities and limitations of contemporary forms of collectivity in relation to a renewed interest in the category of the universal in general and concepts such as cosmopolitanism in particular. Furthermore, this panel seeks to trace the historically and materially concrete determinations that link current conceptions of collectivity and cosmopolitanism. However, it strives to do so not by focusing on the harmonic parallels but rather on the contestations and differences between theoretical and cultural versions of thinking/representing the collective.

Proposals should not be submitted directly to the organizers but via the ACLA website prior to November 13, 2009: http://www.acla.org/submit/index.php.

When submitting a proposal, be sure to select the correct title of the seminar to which you are applying in the dropdown menu immediately following the field for the proposal text.

General information about the conference topic and logistics can be found on the ACLA 2010 website: http://www.acla.org/acla2010/

Please feel free to contact us any time with questions or concerns–all best,

Emilio Sauri (University of Illinois at Chicago), esauri1@uic.edu
Mathias Nilges (St. Francis Xavier University, Canada), mnilges@stfx.ca

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CO-OP WEEK: A TIME TO CELEBRATE!    

Co-op Week– October 11-17 — is here, and co-operators across Canada are preparing for next week’s celebrations.

Co-op Week is a time for co-op and credit union members across Canada to reflect on the achievements of the co-operative sector and the contribution our sector has made to the lives of Canadians and their communities.

This year Co-op Week themes focus on the advantages of co-operatives and credit unions in an uncertain economy. Co-op Week 2009 is highlighting three of these advantages:

Co-operatives are…putting people first
Co-operatives are…creating sustainable jobs
Co-operatives are…investing in communities

In addition, International Credit Union Day — which will be celebrated this year on Thursday, October 15 — will have its own theme “Your Money, Your Choice, Your Credit Union”.

A calendar of Co-op Week events activities can be found at http://www.coopscanada.coop/en/orphan/CoopWeekEvents

If your event isn’t listed, please contact Donna Balkan at communications@coopscanada.coop and it will be posted as soon as possible.

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CALL FOR ADVISORS – BEST START RESOURCE CENTRE

Over the past few years, the Best Start Resource Centre (http://www.beststart.org), a program of Health Nexus, has produced a number of brochures and booklets on topics related to preconception, pregnancy and child development. These documents have generally been produced in French and English and have mainly been distributed in Ontario.

Health Nexus (http://www.healthnexus.ca) has recently received funding from Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Ontario Region, to translate eight of their existing resources for the general public into other languages. Our standard resource adaptation process includes input from advisors as well as testing with end users, to ensure that adaptations meet the needs of the various linguistic and cultural groups. To this end, Health Nexus is seeking two Advisors for each of the following languages:

1. Arabic
2. Tagalog (Filipino)
3. Spanish
4. Punjabi
5. Urdu
6. Hindi
7. Tamil
8. Simplified Chinese

At least one Advisor per language will be a service provider working in reproductive health or child development. Advisors will review the identified resources, provide insights on adaptations needed to make the resources linguistically and culturally appropriate, and help ensure proper wording. Advisors will review the completed translations. An honorarium will be provided to each Advisor.

This project begins immediately, and is to be completed by March 31st, 2010.

If you are interested in being an Advisor, please send a brief (300 words or less) letter of interest outlining your background and experience by October 14, 2009 to:

Subha Sankaran
Health Promotion Consultant
Health Nexus
s.sankaran@healthnexus.ca
http://www.healthnexus.ca
http://www.beststart.org

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JOB POSTING: PROJECT COORDINATOR – COLOUR OF POVERTY CAMPAIGN

The Colour of Poverty Campaign seeks to hire an individual committed to racial justice to help coordinate a province wide project to increase awareness of and efforts to mitigate the impact of racialized poverty and racial inequities.  The project aims at building community capacity through various activities in six communities across Ontario, namely, Hamilton, London, Peel, Ottawa, Toronto, and Windsor.

Responsibilities:

* Overall coordination of the project, meeting timelines and deliverables
* Liaison with and support of the six lead partners at the 6 project sites
* Research, writing and development of new tools
* Assist in organizing the web content, working with the webmaster to make the site the go-to site in the province for racial equity work and analysis as it relates to racialized communities, particularly with respect to poverty reduction and eradication
* Help organize training for community animators for the 6 communities
* Help organize the first community meeting in each of the 6 communities

Qualifications:

* Post-secondary degree from a recognized university related to education, social work, political science, community development or interdisciplinary studies.
* Knowledge and experience conducting public education, outreach, community development, and policy analysis
* Experience working with community groups, non-profit agencies, advocacy or activist groups
* Experience with campaign strategy and grassroots mobilization
* Experience in event planning, conducting workshops, training and facilitation
* Ability to take initiative and problem solve with minimal supervision
* Excellent facilitation, organization, writing and communication skills
* Knowledge and understanding of anti-oppression and anti-racism frameworks
* Valid driver’s license and access to a vehicle is an asset
* Must be able to attend meetings on evenings and weekends

Duration: 1 year contract – Full Time 35 hours per week
Salary: $45,000 pa (including statutory benefits)
Deadline for application: November 20, 2009
Anticipated start date: January 2, 2010

Please send cover letter, resume and writing sample in confidence to the Colour of Poverty Campaign Steering Committee c/o the Metro Toronto Chinese and Southeast Asian Legal Clinic at 180 Dundas Street West, Suite 1701, Toronto, Ontario. Fax: (416) 971-9674 or email: goa@lao.on.ca

The Colour of Poverty Campaign is an equal opportunity employer. We encourage applications from members of racialized communities, First Nations People, women, and people with disabilities. We thank all applicants but only those chosen for an interview will be contacted.

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JOB POSTING: KAIROS PARTNERS AND NETWORKS ASSOCIATE

KAIROS, the national social justice of eleven national churches and church related organizations, is seeking a Partners and Networks Associate to join our outreach team.

The Partners and Network Associate works to strengthen KAIROS’ relationships with partners from the Global South, Canadian ecumenical activist networks and the general public. S/he collaborates with partnership staff in coordinating the visits of Southern partners to Canada, and plans special events with partners to engage donors, foundations, government and networks. S/he also facilitates general promotion of KAIROS and promotion and distribution of KAIROS print resources The Partners and Networks Associate is on the front line for information and support to KAIROS activists, and shares reception responsibilities.

If you are a creative, energetic individual with a passion for engaging people in social justice, please apply.

To read the complete posting, click here: http://www.kairoscanada.org/en/who-we-are/job-opportunities/

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ONLINE JOURNAL ARTICLES

* Addressing the underemployment of persons with disabilities: Recommendations for expanding organizational social responsibility
Karen S. Markel, Lizabeth A. Barclay
Employee Responsibilities and Rights Journal
http://www.springerlink.com/content/t0087r34h1000720/

* First approaches toward understanding Mexico City’s culture of consumption
Steven B. Bunker
Journal of Urban History published 8 October 2009, 10.1177/0096144209349894
http://juh.sagepub.com/cgi/rapidpdf/0096144209349894v1

*All the world’s New York, all New York’s a stage: Drama, draft riots, and democracy in the mid-nineteenth century
Hilary Moss
Journal of Urban History published 22 September 2009, 10.1177/0096144209347095
http://juh.sagepub.com/cgi/rapidpdf/0096144209347095v1

* Private equity and American labor: Multiple, pragmatic responses mirroring labor’s strengths and weaknesses
Larry W. Beeferman
JIR 2009;51 543-556
http://jir.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/51/4/543

* Sin city or suburban crucible? Searching for meanings in the new Las Vegas
Lawrence Culver
Journal of Urban History published 15 September 2009, 10.1177/0096144209347100
http://juh.sagepub.com/cgi/rapidpdf/0096144209347100v1

*Book Review: DeRienzo, H. (2008). The Concept of Community: Lessons From the Bronx. Milan, Italy: IPOC di Pietro Condemi
Angela M. Eikenberry
Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly 2009;38 905-907
http://nvs.sagepub.com/cgi/reprint/38/5/905

***END***

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Bertolt Brecht

Bertolt Brecht

Walter Benjamin and Bertolt Brecht: Story of a Friendship?

A one-day conference

10am–8pm,
6 November 2009
Birkbeck,
Malet Street, Bloomsbury
London wc1e 7hx
Rooms b36/b02 & b03

The English translation of Erdmut Wizisla’s formidable study Walter Benjamin and Bertolt Brecht: The Story of a Friendship was published this Autumn by Libris. No one has a better view of the much disputed relationship between these two figures than Erdmut Wizisla, director of Berlin’s Benjamin and Brecht Archives. Greeting the German edition, Momme Brodersen, Benjamin’s biographer, spoke for many when he wrote: ‘If this book had appeared decades ago, it would have terminated an unproductive debate in one fell swoop: that of the influence – be it fruitful, be it disastrous – of probably the most significant German playwright and poet of the 20th century, Bertolt Brecht, on probably the most significant critic of his day, Walter Benjamin’. Our conference celebrates the book’s publication and explores the ways in which Wizisla’s study augments, challenges or re-constellates previous analyses (most notably the one emanating from that other Story of a Friendship, published in English in 1982, by Gershom Scholem).

The conference is free, but please register beforehand by email to Julia Eisner, j.eisner@bbk.ac.uk

Any queries may be directed to Esther Leslie, e.leslie@bbk.ac.uk

Conference Programme
10am–5pm
Room b36, basement, Birkbeck, main building
Papers are c. 20 minutes long and are followed by discussion

10.00am Registration
10.20 Opening words

10.30 Peter Thompson (Sheffeld)
Brecht, Benjamin and the Crisis of Modernity

11.10 Chryssoula Kambas (Osnabrck)
From West to East: An External Examiner Remembers

11.50 Break

12.10pm Barbara Engh (Leeds)
Friendship and Clang Figures

1.00 Lunch break

2.30 Erdmut Wizisla (Berlin) – The Benjamin Archive and the New German Benjamin Edition

3.10 Tony Phelan (Oxford) Brecht on Benjamin – ‘On the Philosophy of History’

3.50 Break

4.10 Summing up – Esther Leslie
Constellations and Comradeship

5.00 Conference closes

Launch
5.30–c. 8pm
Rooms B02 & B03
Erdmut Wizisla, Walter Benjamin
and Bertolt Brecht – the Story of a Friendship, Libris, London 2009

‘Wizisla’s brilliant study of the complex and controversial intellectual relationship between Walter Benjamin and Bertolt Brecht will be the standard work on this subject for years to come. It blows away the dusty cliches that
have so far passed for scholarship in this area, thanks to Wizisla’s unsurpassed knowledge of previously unpublished documents and archive materials, which enables him to reconstruct and reconsider every dimension of Brecht and
Benjamin’s relationship from 1929 to 1940. Lucidly and accessibly written, this book is essential reading not only for Brecht and Benjamin specialists, but for all those interested in this crucial phase of twentieth century cultural history.’
– Steve Giles, Emeritus Professor of German Studies and Critical Theory, University of Nottingham.

5.30pm Welcome and wine
5.40 Words of memory and thanks – Nick Jacobs
5.45 Introduction – Tom Kuhn
6.00 Erdmut Wizisla – ‘My First Acquaintance with Brecht and Benjamin’
Thereafter wine and snacks

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ides: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

The Pursuit of Happiness

The Pursuit of Happiness

DOUGLAS KENNEDY

 

Ruth Rikowski has written a subtantial article on the work of the American novelist Douglas Kennedy. You can view Ruth’s article at her Serendipitous Moments blog: http://ruthrikowskiim.blogspot.com/2009/10/douglas-kennedy.html

Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk