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Monthly Archives: February 2010

Karl Marx

MARX AND PHILOSOPHY SOCIETY SEVENTH ANNUAL CONFERENCE – CALL FOR GRADUATE PANEL PAPERS

Call for Graduate Panel Papers

Marx and Philosophy Society Seventh Annual Conference Saturday 5 June 2010, Institute of Education, University of London

‘Abstraction, Universality and Money’

Main speakers:
Chris Arthur
Richard Seaford (Exeter)
Alberto Toscano (Goldsmiths)

The Marx and Philosophy Society aims to encourage scholarly engagement with, and creative development of, the philosophical and foundational aspects of Marx’s work. The society welcomes contributions from any philosophical or political position.

Papers on any topic consonant with the general aims of the Society (not necessarily on the specific conference theme) are invited from postgraduate students for a panel at the conference. Papers should be planned to last for approximately 20 minutes. Please submit abstracts of up to 300 words by 5th March 2010 to David Marjoribanks at: dm275@kent.ac.uk

http://www.marxandphilosophy.org.uk/society

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Sean Sayers, Professor of Philosophy,
School of European Culture and Languages
University of Kent, Canterbury CT2 7NF, UK
Tel +44 1227-827513; Fax +44 1227-823641
http://www.kent.ac.uk/secl/philosophy/staff/sayers.html

Editor, Marx and Philosophy Review of Books
http://www.marxandphilosophy.org.uk/reviewofbooks/

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

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

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Victor

COLD HANDS & QUARTER MOON – UPDATE 28th FEBRUARY 2010

Here are some links to recent performances by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon:

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon play ‘Stagnant’ (composed by Victor Rikowski), live at the Belle View, Bangor, Wales: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLjxeHvvhJQ  

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon play ‘Simon Says Get Out’ (compsed by Victor Rikowski), live at the Belle View, Bangor, Wales: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LRtuqV_WpGY 

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon play ‘Human Herbs’ (composed by Victor Rikowski), live at the Bangor University Cabaret: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IlCPRekckVw 

For more info on the band, see: https://rikowski.wordpress.com/cold-hands-quarter-moon/

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

Edward Said

6th ANNUAL EDWARD SAID MEMORIAL LECTURE

The University of Warwick
Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies, presents:

The 6th Annual Edward Said Memorial Lecture

By:

Professor EYAL WEIZMAN (Director, Centre for Research in Architecture, Goldsmiths College, London. Author of Hollow Land: Israel’s Architecture of Occupation (2007)

“Political Plastic: Spatial Politics in Israel and Palestine”

On Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010, 6 pm, in the Ramphal Building, Room RO.21

For more info: contact Professor Neil Lazarus (n.lazarus@warwick.ac.uk), or the English Department on 02476 524928

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon at: https://rikowski.wordpress.com/cold-hands-quarter-moon/

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

Work, work, work

CENTRE FOR THE STUDY OF EDUCATION AND WORK – UPDATE 27th FEBRUARY 2010

EVENTS

HEALTH FOR ALL: FIXING A BROKEN HEALTHCARE SYSTEM FOR IMMIGRANTS AND REFUGEES, TORONTO

March 4th, 2010
6:30 PM
Bahen Centre, Room 1180
40 St. George Street

Speakers:
– Dr. Meb Rashid, Family Physician
– Jackie Esmonde, Immigration Lawyer
– Manavi Handa, Registered Midwife, WestEnd Midwifery Collective

The cost of healthcare has been established as a barrier for under and uninsured migrant communities in accessing healthcare for decades. Despite the talk, few affordable healthcare options have been made available to these communities.

In recent years, the midwifery model of care in Ontario has proved to be a cost effective, accessible option for uninsured populations in Ontario to access maternity care. Community Health Centres are another point of access to primary healthcare for underinsured populations in Ontario. Interdisciplinary staffing and coordination of care, with alternative payment structure arrangements from the Ministry of Health, seek to ensure that uninsured populations have access to primary care.  

This evening will look at the opportunities and barriers to ensuring health for all! The panelists will discuss the successes of these two models of care, and the victories won by various professionals and communities in providing healthcare for the uninsured.

For more information, please email healthforalltoronto@gmail.com

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SOCIAL PLANNING TORONTO RESEARCH & POLICY FORUM

March 1st, 2010
9:00am-12:00pm
Social Planning Toronto
2 Carlton Suite, # 1001 (Carlton & Yonge)

Social Planning Toronto invites you to attend our March Research & Policy Forum. This month we will be looking at issues around immigrant homelessness and health & labour market outcomes for immigrants.

Presenters include:
– Dr. Stephen Hwang, St. Michael’s Hospital/ University of Toronto
– Dr. John Shields, Ryerson University/ Toronto Immigrant Employment Data Initiative (TIEDI)

A light breakfast will be provided

To register for this event, click here: http://socialplanningtoronto.org/social-planning-toronto-research-policy-forum-registration/

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RESOURCES FOR FEMINIST RESEARCH (RFR) BOOK SALE

March 8, 2010
Centre for Women’s Studies in Education
Rm. 2-227, OISE
252 Bloor St West, St. George Subway
Toronto,

Proceeds to RFR’s Legal Defense Fund (details at the sale)

For more info: Zoe Newman, email: znewman@yorku.ca

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THE CITY IS A SWEATSHOP

March 19-21
Toronto

No One Is Illegal-Toronto is organizing days of education, community building and idea sharing.

Look out for more details on the events coming soon: http://www.toronto.nooneisillegal.org/node/422

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THE POWER OF US: A CELEBRATION OF WOMEN

Monday, March 8, 2010
7 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Metro-Central YMCA
20 Grosvenor Street, Toronto
(East of Bay Street, north of College Street)

This year, on International Women’s Day, we’re celebrating: Women’s resilience and resistance. Women’s achievements and progress. Women’s voices and women’s spirit.

Join renowned youth activist Jessica Yee and celebrated Canadian artist and performer d’bi young for a special evening to celebrate International Women’s Day 2010.

Jessica Yee – youth activist indigenous hip-hop feminist, author of two books, founder and executive director of the Native Youth Sexual Network, recipient of the 2009 YWCA Young Woman of Distinction Award – and 24 years old.

d’bi young – musician, dub poet, actor, teacher and storyteller – and one of Canada’s most celebrated artists. She is currently playwright-in-residence at CanStage Theatre, author of two dub poetry collections and two plays, producer of five albums, and recipient of countless arts awards.

Tickets are $17.50 through UofTtix
416-978-8849
http://www.uofttix.ca/view.php?id=612

Tickets are also available at
Women’s College Hospital, Ankh Gift Shop for $15 (cash and pickup only).

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NEWS & VIEWS

NEW BOOK FROM THE CENTRE FOR THE STUDY OF EDUCATION AND WORK (CSEW)

“Challenging Transitions in Learning and Work: Reflections on Policy and Practice”

Edited by: Peter Sawchuk, University of Toronto, Canada and Alison Taylor, University of Alberta, Canada

In the past two decades, advanced capitalist countries have seen sustained growth in labour market participation along with a growth in the number of jobs workers tend to have in their working lives. Over a slightly longer period we also see that participation in both formal educational attainment and a range of non-compulsory learning/training has grown. However, labour market discrimination based on gender, age, disability and race/ethnicity remains a serious issue in virtually all OECD countries.

“Challenging Transitions in Learning and Work” presents a critical and expansive exploration of learning and work transitions within this context. These transitions are challenging for those enmeshed in them and need to be actively challenged through the critical research reported. The impetus for this volume, its conceptual framing, and much of the research emerges from the team of Canadian researchers who together completed case study and survey projects within the ‘Work and Lifelong Learning’ (WALL) network. The authors include leading scholars with established international reputations as well as emerging researchers with fresh perspectives. This volume will appeal to researchers and policy-makers internationally with an interest in educational studies and industrial sociology.

The Knowledge Economy and Education volume 2
ISBN 978-90-8790-887-4 paperback US$49 / €45
ISBN 978-90-8790-888-1 hardback US$99 / €90
February 2010, 340 pages
SensePublishers (http://www.sensepublishers.com)

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VIDEO: CRASH! OCAP VISITS LIBERAL PARTY FUNDRAISER

2010 Heritage Dinner
with special guest the Hon. Dalton McGuinty, MPP

The Liberals talk about ‘poverty reduction’ but the reality is that, well into their second term of office, people on social assistance live on incomes that have lost 55% of their spending power since 1995. We are even poorer today than we were under Mike Harris.

The one handhold that poor people have been able to use to limit their poverty, is a program known as the Special Diet. This provides up to $250 a month if a medical provider considers it necessary. In the last number of years, more and more poor people have become aware of the Special Diet. The misery and suffering that is being inflicted on those losing the Special Diet is enormous and OCAP is here to challenge it.

Watch the video: http://www.socialistproject.ca/leftstreamed/ls40.php

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CANADIAN WOMEN’S RIGHTS IN DECLINE, REPORT SAYS

Canada won’t be winning many medals next month when the United Nations takes stock of women’s equality around the world, according to a new report that charts “systematic erosion” in the status of Canadian women since 2004.

You can view this story at: http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/769954–canadian-women-s-rights-in-decline-report-says

You can download the whole Canadian Labour Congress report here: http://www.canadianlabour.ca/sites/default/files/2010-02-22-Canada-Beijing15-NGO-Report-EN.pdf

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CANADA’S MIGRATION POLICIES: FOR CHEAP LABOUR, AGAINST HUMAN FREEDOM

York University professor disputes the positive assessment of Canada’s migration policies in the UN Human Development Report 2009.

To read more: http://www.nupge.ca/node/2959

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HARPER’S ‘BUY AMERICAN’ PLAN BAD DEAL FOR CANADIANS

Last week the Council of Canadians, along with the Canadian Union of Public Employees, leaked a copy of the Canada-U.S. Agreement on government procurement (the “Buy American” deal) to the media. It was the first time the wide-sweeping deal, which will permanently constrain provincial spending options in many areas, had been put forward for public scrutiny.

To read more: http://www.canadians.org/trade/issues/NAFTA/buy_American.html

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POST-STRIKE MUSINGS: ASSESSING THE OUTCOME OF THE MUSEUM WORKERS’ STRUGGLE

by Priscillia Lefebvre, The Bullet

On December 15th, after a strike lasting 86-days, PSAC workers voted to accept the tentative agreement reached between Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) Local 70396’s bargaining unit and the Canadian Museum of Civilization Corporation (CMCC). The strike occurred after weeks of stalled negotiations resulted in an offer deemed unacceptable by 92% of the voting membership. According to a communiqué released by the CMCC’s chief communications office, the agreement reached by them and the PSAC workers reflect its “commitment to face-to-face discussions, compromise and mutual understanding.” Looking back at their enduring struggle for job security and fair wages throughout negotiations, employees may greet this statement with a difference of opinion. The strike ended in what many consider as a relative victory with gains in the protection of employees against the contracting out of positions; however, the road to success was a long and arduous
one.

To read more: http://www.socialistproject.ca/bullet/317.php

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JOB POSTINGS

* Executive Director

Organization: The Deepwater Experiential Education Project (DEEP)

Position Type: Part-time time contract (20 hours a week) with potential for full-time based on performance.

Job Region: Based in Toronto with potential need for fundraising- associated travel

Responsibilities:

We are a non-profit that provides scholarships based on need and merit for youth to attend experiential education wilderness programs. We are seeking a self-directed individual with an accomplished background in administration and fundraising for the position of Executive Director. This is an opportunity to take a leadership role in a small organization and operate with considerable discretion and flexibility.

To read more: http://www.deepwaterproject.org

(from Canada’s Green Job Site, http://www.GoodWorkCanada.ca)

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* Intake Support Worker, Working Skills Centre, Toronto

Key Responsibilities:

-Provide career assessment support to applicants for certificate and diploma skills training programs at Working Skills Centre, a non-profit community agency serving immigrants, primarily women.
-Conduct weekly information sessions (training will be provided)
-Provide support for students once enrolled, responding to inquires and helping to find solutions to settlement, family, housing, and workload concerns
-Work with the Graduate Services Coordinator to monitor internal volunteer placement opportunities and match candidates to these opportunities
-Mark assessment tests, provide information on results to clients, help clients to determine career paths based on competencies
-Assist WSC staff to monitor Essential Skills Portfolios with students enrolled in training programs

Qualifications:
-A keen interest in providing assistance to immigrants and helping them understand the Canadian labour market
-University or college degree or equivalent community work experience helping individuals in some HR capacity
-Strong computer skills (MS Office and Internet Search)
-Past experience using an Access Database an asset
-Ability to problem solve and work independently if needed

Position Details:
-Wage rate: $14.10/hr, 30/hr/wk (FTE $27,500/year)
-Start date: immediately
-Contact position for 11 months (46 weeks)
-Individual must meet Investing in Neighbourhoods criteria:
-Unemployed, client, spouse, dependent adult on Ontario Works
-Family in receipt of NCBS or OCB

How to Apply:
Send a resume to: Honey Crossley by email: mailto: hcrossley@workingskillscentre.com

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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.

This is a moderated list. To send postings to the list, please email them to rhonda_sussman@yahoo.ca  To change your subscription settings, visit http://listserv.oise.utoronto.ca/mailman/listinfo/csewbroadcast

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

***END***

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

HAL

SOCIAL LEARNING SPACES: KNOWLEDGE SPACES

The 5th Space Symposium will be taking place at Warwick University on 29th March 2010. 

Registration is open and details of the event are below.

The Fifth Symposium on Social Learning Space: Knowledge Spaces

The Reinvention Centre for Undergraduate Research, Westwood Campus, University of Warwick, Monday 29 March, 2010  

‘Knowledge spaces are the thick social spaces through which truth, knowledge and power are created’ (Sarah Wright, 2005: 908)

Following the success of the previous four Space Symposia, Knowledge Spaces addresses the role of architecture, spatial planning and the use of different spaces in the construction and experience of curricula and pedagogy in Higher Education.

The symposium will address the question of how the spaces we create, occupy and challenge, both within the university and beyond it, affect what and how we know, as well as considering who plays what roles in the process of knowledge creation and communication. In particular, the symposium will explore:

* The landscapes of learning in Higher Education

* The use of ‘real life’ spaces such as urban, public, employment and community settings for the development and enactment of curricula and assessment

* The relationship between physical classroom spaces and different pedagogical approaches 

* The role of university buildings and curricula in shaping pedagogical and political relations between students and staff

The event offers an exciting and diverse programme of keynote lecture(s), participatory workshop(s) and an interactive research exhibition.

Confirmed speakers and workshop leaders:

Professor Mike Neary, University of Lincoln: (Learning Landscapes and the struggle for the idea of the University)

Professor Jonothan Neelands: Institute of Education, University of Warwick (tba)

Oscar van den Wijngaard and Wilfred van Dellen, University College Maastricht: (Colleagues and Peers at University College Maastricht: Collaboration and reciprocity as educational strategy)

Dr Sarah Czerny and Students, University of Rijeka, Croatia:  (Blocked Spaces: (Re)considering the staff-student relation form the perspective of the blokada in Rijeka)

Registration

The cost of the conference is £75 for waged delegates and £10 for students.

Online registration is now available via this web page: www.warwick.ac.uk/go/reinvention/spaces/symposia/fifth/

If you have any queries please send an email to: conference.reinvention@warwick.ac.uk  or telephone Sumila Bhandari on 024 76575125.

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

Wavering on Ether: http://blog.myspace.com/glennrikowski

Global Power

10th ESSEX CONFERENCE IN CRITICAL POLITICAL THEORY

THEORY IN THE FACE OF GLOBAL CHALLENGES: CAPITALISM & ECOLOGY, COMMUNITY & CITIZENSHIP

Call for Papers
Dates: 16-18 June 2010
Location: University of Essex, Colchester, UK
Call for Papers Deadline: 30 April 2010
Website: http://www.essex.ac.uk/idaworld/10th_Essex_Conference_in_Critical_Political_Theory.html
All Inquiries to: polcon@essex.ac.uk

Keynote Speakers
ROMAND Coles is Professor of Community, Culture & Environment at Northern Arizona University.
DIANA Coole is Professor of Political & Social Theory at Birkbeck, University of London.
STEPHEN K. White is James Hart Professor of Politics at the University of Virginia.

Other Confirmed Speakers Include:

JANE Bennett, The Johns Hopkins University (USA)
WILLIAM E. Connolly, The Johns Hopkins University (USA)
ERNESTO Laclau is Emeritus Professor of Political Theory at the University of Essex.
FRANCISO Panizza, London School of Economics and Political Science (UK)

Organizing Committee at the University of Essex
JASON Glynos, Department of Government, University of Essex
DAVID Howarth, Centre for Theoretical Studies, University of Essex
ALETTA J. Norval, Centre for Theoretical Studies, University of Essex
JONATHAN Dean, Department of Government, University of Essex
KHAIRIL Ahmad, PhD Candidate, Department of Government, University of Essex
GRAHAM Walker, PhD Candidate, Department of Government, University of Essex

Methodology Workshops Organizing Committee
GRAHAM Walker, PhD Candidate, Department of Government, University of Essex

The Conference Theme: Theory in the Face of Global Challenges: Capitalism & Ecology, Community & Citizenship

FEW doubt, today, that we face a series of connected global challenges: the dangers of climate change and environmental degradation; a crisis of international finance and global capitalism; an ever-increasing logic of minoritization, which threatens to fragment communities and societies; greater social and economic inequalities, both nationally and globally; the intensification of various forms of religious belief, including fundamentalism, alongside a growing secularization of communities and societies; and a palpable disillusionment with politics and politicians.

THEORISTS and scholars in the humanities, social sciences, and the natural sciences also face new challenges: insistent demands to show the ‘relevance’ of their research for the ‘real world’; diminishing resources and institutional support; a growing marginalization from mainstream and corporately subsidized research. Universities and colleges are being compelled to show that their research has a ‘direct impact’ on the economy, public policy, or society in order to secure funding and research grants.

‘THEORY in the Face of Global Challenges: Capitalism & Ecology, Community & Citizenship’ takes up the challenge of rethinking different aspects of global capitalism, religion, the place of minorities, and the environment. It will also problematize and explore the role of theory in the academy and in relation to the pressing issues we confront.

HOW do we problematize and critically explain these new phenomena? What are the limits and potentials of contemporary political and ethical theory in addressing these new issues? What is the relationship between community, citizenship, and democracy? What kind of ethos needs to be cultivated in the face of these new challenges, and how can it be brought about? Must ecology be sacrificed on the altar of rebuilding the global capitalist system, or is an eco-egalitarian alternative possible? In what ways can various fundamentalisms be challenged and engaged with in the name of a democratic politics that is not itself fundamentalist in character? What is the relationship between cultural theory, radical materialism and various sorts of naturalism? What are the prospects and limits of pluralizing pluralism? Ought we to restrict agency to humans, or does it extend to the material and non-human world more generally? What is the relationship between nature and culture? How can cultural theory respond to recent developments in science? How do these broad sets of issues and questions get addressed in specific contexts and policy arenas? And what theoretical languages and methods are best able to respond to these changes and trends?

THESE are just some of the tasks of critical political theory today. Our invited speakers shall deliver keynote addresses to the conference that will shape the discussions with their distinctive voices and perspectives. Each of the speakers will address one or more of the themes announced in the title.

ROMAND Coles is Professor and Director of the Programme in Community, Culture & Environment at Northern Arizona University. He works at the intersections between radical democratic theory, continental philosophy, and grassroots democratic activism. During his two decades at Duke University he co-founded and co-directed an interdisciplinary project called Dialogical Ethics and Critical Cosmopolitanism, as well as The Third Reconstruction Institute, which cultivated collaborations between scholars and grassroots organizers across the South-Eastern United States. He currently directs the Programme for Community, Culture, and Environment at Northern Arizona University where he writes, teaches and organizes politically on issues pertaining to building grassroots democracy in schools, developing a green economy, crafting public spaces, immigration rights, urban agriculture, and the engaged pedagogy movement in higher education. His writings include: Self/Power/Other: Political Theory and Dialogical Ethics; Rethinking Generosity: Critical Theory and the Politics of Caritas; Beyond Gated Politics: Reflections Toward the Possibility of Democracy; and (with Stanley Hauerwas) Christianity, Democracy, and the Radical Ordinary: Conversations Between a Radical Democrat and a Christian. Romand’s address will explore possibilities for radical democratic transformation toward a green political economy, focusing on vital micro-relational dynamics among humans and the nonhuman that nurture revolutionary enthusiasms, hopeful visions of possibility, and networks of political power necessary for constructing alternatives to ecocidal global capitalism. His discussion will make connections between grassroots community organizing initiatives in which he is involved, theories of mimesis and mirror neurons, and broadening experiments in alternative political economy.

DIANA Coole is Professor of Political and Social Theory at Birkbeck, University of London. Her many books and articles include Women in Political Theory: From Ancient Misogyny to Contemporary Feminism, 2nd Edition (Hemel Hempstead, Harvester-Wheatsheaf & Colorado, Lynne Rienner, 1993); Negativity and Politics: Dionysus and Dialectics from Kant to Poststructuralism (London & New York, Routledge, 2000); Merleau-Ponty and Modern Politics after Anti-Humanism (Rowman and Littlefield, 2007); Materialism and Subjectivity (Duke University Press, 2007). Her address will focus on the discursive and ethical framing of question the population question for developed countries. Her concerns thus engage the intersection between capitalism and the environment, whilst raising significant controversies about immigration, community and new forms of citizenship. Drawing on her extensive knowledge of modern political and social theory, and contemporary continental political philosophy, she will also explore the role of theory and theorists in addressing these issues and their policy implications.

STEPHEN K. White is James Hart Professor of Politics at the University of Virginia. His books include The Recent Work of Jurgen Habermas (Cambridge University Press, 1988) and Political Theory and Postmodernism (Cambridge University Press, 1991); Edmund Burke: Modernity, Politics and Aesthetics (Sage, 1994). He has also edited volumes entitled Lifeworld and Politics: Between Modernity and Postmodernity (University of Notre Dame Press, 1989) and the Cambridge Companion to Habermas (Cambridge University Press, 1995). His contribution to the forthcoming conference arises from his most recent book – The Ethos of a Late-Modern Citizen – where he contends that the global challenges facing Western democracies require a systematic re-examination and re-articulation of the role of citizens and citizenship. His approach does not deny, in the name of tradition, the force of what is new, nor does he imagine that we can adequately confront change by simply rejecting the traditions of modern Western political thought. Instead, he offers an incisive interpretation of our late-modern ethical-political condition and explains how a distinctive “ethos” or spirit of citizenship might constitute part of an exemplary response. This ethos requires reworking basic figures of the modern political imagination, including our conception of the self, citizenship, and democratic politics.

***

THE TENTH CONFERENCE IN CRITICAL POLITICAL THEORY at the University of Essex provides a space to address and engage with these issues. The conference has achieved a renowned reputation for the quality of the papers presented and the large number of international participants. Previous guest speakers have included Bill Connolly, Michael Hardt, Wendy Brown, Judith Squires, Quentin Skinner, Joan Copjec, James Tully, Jane Bennett, Fred Dallmayr, Bonnie Honig, David Owen, David Campbell, Simon Critchley, Ernesto Laclau, and Chantal Mouffe, amongst others. This year the conference will be hosted by the IDAWorld, Centre for Theoretical Studies, and the Department of Government at the University of Essex.

THE conference provides an important opportunity to engage with the contemporary challenges and possibilities of social and political theory and to exchange views on ongoing research. We welcome papers from all scholars, including postdoctoral researchers, postgraduates and early career scholars from a wide variety of backgrounds in the field of social and political theory. But as is customary with the Essex conference, the themes are in part shaped by the thought and writings of our invited guests, and this year is no exception. We are delighted to host Professors Romand Coles, Diana Coole, Ernesto Laclau & Stephen White.

Broad Themes Include
* Rethinking Community and Citizenship
* Critical Political Economy
* Discourse & the Media
* Politics of Immanence and Transcendence
* Ecology and Capitalism
* Politics and Technology
* Latin American Politics
* Universalism and Particularism
* Democracy and Representation
* Capitalism, Multiculturalism, Globalization
* Identity Politics and Mobilization
* Subjectivity and Psychoanalysis
* Religion, Faith and Pluralism
* Discourse and Affect
* Fundamentalisms
* New Ecologies
* Philosophies of Nature
* Discourse, Governance & Public Policy
* Culture and Political Economy
* The Politics of Space, Time and Territoriality
* Reworking Identity/Difference

Proposals for Papers, Panels and Roundtables
The conference organizers welcome proposals for individual papers; full panels (with papers); and roundtables (focused on discussion of a common theme rather than the formal presentation of papers). Paper, panel, and roundtable proposals (short abstracts) should be sent to polcon@essex.ac.uk no later than 30th April, 2010. Inquiries may also be sent to that address. Decisions on proposals will be made on a rolling basis. Inquiries may also be sent to that address. Final papers will be posted on the conference website.
Methodology Workshops

Some of the sessions will be devoted to methodological workshops. The 90-minute workshop sessions feature specialists in different aspects of critical and poststructuralist political analysis. The workshop sessions take the form of a “master-class”, with senior researchers meeting a small number of early career researchers using a particular methodological strategy or technique. The focus will be on questions raised by researchers, and their research will be treated as case studies to generate and engage a set of methodological questions.
The workshops aim at creating a setting where early career researchers can benefit from interaction with experts in their field. The sessions will be facilitated by fellow early career researchers, and the discussants will be established and renowned names in the field of interpretative political analysis, such as Jason Glynos, David Howarth and Aletta Norval. The sessions are fully incorporated into the regular conference program, and the sessions are open to all conference participants.

In order to take part in a workshop session, early career researchers invited to present their work in one of these will be asked to introduce their research project in a 2-3 page summary, pointing to the particular difficulties or methodological questions that arise from their research that they would like to explore in the workshop. Please note it clearly in your inquiry if you wish to be considered for inclusion in a Methodology Workshop. The deadline for inquiries is 30 April 2010. For additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact the chair of the Methodology Workshop Advisory Board (polcon@essex.ac.uk) marking your inquiry clearly for attention: Graham Walker.

Conference Fees*
Conference fees for Staff: £140
Conference fees for Early Career Researchers: £80
*Conference fees include coffee/tea, 3 lunch vouchers and the conference dinner (excluding wine) on Thursday night.
Note: Those not wishing to attend the conference dinner may subtract £30 from the conference fee.

Conference Site
The University of Essex is located in the ancient market town of Colchester and near the picturesque village of Wivenhoe in Northeast Essex. It is about 45 minutes from London by rail, 30 minutes from London’s Stansted Airport by cab or about an hour by bus. The conference programme will offer opportunities to enjoy the traditional villages and countryside in this scenic part of England. More information about accommodation, costs, and venue is available on the website.

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

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

Wavering on Ether: http://blog.myspace.com/glennrikowski

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

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: https://rikowski.wordpress.com/cold-hands-quarter-moon/

London

LONDON MEETINGS: CRITIQUE, HOUSMANS, COMMUNE, RADICAL ANTHROPOLOGY GROUP

Critique Seminar

Saturday 27 February, 12-5pm. London School of Economics, Columbia House, 2nd Floor/B212. Corner of Aldwych and Houghton Street, Holborn tube.

Mick Cox on The Decline of US Political Economic Dominance

Hillel Ticktin on The Nature of the Global Crisis- Cyclical, Strategic and Systemic

Some articles from Critique, a Journal of Socialist Theory are available at libcom.org:
Political Consciousness and its Conditions at the Present Time by Hillel Ticktin
Capitalist Instability and the Current Crisis by Hillel Ticktin
Decline as a Concept by Hillel Ticktin
Disintegrating Stalinism by Hillel Ticktin
Marx’s Theory of Crisis by David Kennedy
The Abolition of Labour in Marx’s Teaching by Uri Zilbersheid

Other relevant articles at libcom.org include:
A review of Origins of the crisis in the USSR by Hillel Ticktin
The Leopard in the 20th Century by William Dixon

A video of the debate between Hillel Ticktin, William Dixon and Chris Knight on ‘The (Im)possibility of Revolution’ is available on youtube

There will be a further Critique Conference in London later in the year. See  http://www.critiquejournal.net in a few weeks for more details.

THE COMMUNE hold regular interesting discussions London. See http://thecommune.wordpress.com/ for further events.

HOUSMANS BOOKSHOP holds regular meetings and book launches on a wide range of political issues at 5 Caledonian Road, Kings Cross, London, N1  e.g:

Thurs 25th Feb – 7pm No Sweat Forum – Haiti Earthquake

Sat. 6th March – 5pm ‘Feminism Today’ with Nina Power and Lindsey German

Weds 24th March – 7pm ‘Women and Activism’ with Maya Evans and Tamsin Omond

See http://www.housmans.com/events.php for future events.

 

EVENING CLASS INTRODUCTION TO ANTHROPOLOGY

Tuesdays, 6.45-9pm St. Martin’s Community Centre, 43 Carol St., NW1 (2 mins from Camden tube).

It is now known that symbolic culture began emerging in Africa some 100,000 years ago, in a social revolution whose echoes can still be heard in mythic narratives and ritual traditions from around the world. This course is a general introduction to anthropology including the latest findings from palaeogenetics, evolutionary biology, primatology, rock art research and archaeology.

The course should also be enjoyable: there are good local pubs, and there is always time for discussion and socialising.

Feb 23 When two sisters got swallowed by the Rainbow Snake, Chris Knight
Mar 02 Native American mythology, Chris Knight
Mar 09 The Hunter Monmaneki and his Wives, Chris Knight
Mar 16 The Moon Inside You (film showing and discussion), Diana Fabionova
Mar 23 First gender, wrong sex, Camilla Power

These articles summarize some of the ideas explored at these meetings (they are available at cpgb.org.uk):

Solidarity and Sex: the first human revolution was led by women – Chris Knight

Stonehenge and the Neolithic counter-revolution – Lionel Sims

Sex and the human revolution – Chris Knight
 

For many more articles and future meetings see: www.radicalanthropologygroup.org

Many other events in London can be found at http://london.indymedia.org.uk/

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Paul Kingsnorth

Environment

‘IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT (AN I FEEL FINE)’: WHY ENVIRONMENTALISM HAS FAILED AND WHAT COMES NEXT

Paul Kingsnorth

22nd February 2010, 5.30pm, Beehive, Room 2.21, at Newcastle University

Paul Kingsnorth has worked in an orang utan rehabilitation centre in Borneo, as a peace observer in the rebel Zapatista villages of Mexico, as a floor-sweeper in McDonalds and as an assistant lock-keeper on the river Thames. He studied history at Oxford University between 1991 and 1994, was arrested during the Twyford Down road protests of 1993 and was named one of Britain’s ‘top ten troublemakers’ by the New Statesman magazine in 2001.

Paul has worked on the comment desk of The Independent, as commissioning editor for opendemocracy.net; http://www.opendemocracy.net/ and as deputy editor of The Ecologist http://www.theecologist.org/. He is also an award-winning poet http://www.paulkingsnorth.net/poetry.html, and an honorary member of the Lani tribe of New Guinea. He has written for most UK newspapers and many other publications at home and abroad, and appeared on radio and TV.

Paul’s first book, One No, Many Yeses, http://www.paulkingsnorth.net/onmy.html (Simon and Schuster, 2003), an investigative journey through the ‘anti-globalisation’ movement, was published in six languages in thirteen countries. His second book, Real England, http://www.paulkingsnorth.net/realengland.html, was published by Portobello Books http://www.portobellobooks.com/ in 2008. His debut poetry collection, Kidland, is forthcoming from Salmon Poetry: http://www.salmonpoetry.com/. In 2009 he co-founded of the Dark Mountain Project: http://www.dark-mountain.net/.

Paul Kingsnorth: http://www.paulkingsnorth.net

Paul will be giving a version of his contribution to the book What is Radical Politics Today? Edited by Jonathan Pugh of Newcastle University, and published in November 2009 by Palgrave-Macmillan.

Those interested in attending should email Jonathan Pugh:  Jonathan.Pugh@ncl.ac.uk

This event is linked to the Spaces of Democracy and the Democracy of Space network: 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
NE17RU
United Kingdom
Honorary Fellow, The Centre for the Study of Democracy, University of Westminster

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Lysenko

INTERNATIONAL WORKSHOP ON LYSENKOISM

Portions of the International Workshop on Lysenkoism, held December 4-5, 2009 at the CUNY Graduate Center and Columbia University, were filmed by CUNY TV, and can be viewed online at:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=37ck9UPiJc8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ct3kA_0jgHs&feature=channel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ZGKoGzCe_o&feature=channel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8oDQSmVtSzI&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_RO9KKR fq0&feature=channel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SPkuK3HMXI&feature=channel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVovS-pNnEk&feature=channel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c8pH_tF5hiI&feature=channel

For further information and project updates please contact William deJong-Lambert at: WRL4@columbia.edu/william.dejong-lambert@bcc.cuny.edu.

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

Karl Marx

MARX AND PHILOSOPHY REVIEW OF BOOKS

Announcing the launch of a new online review of books covering Marxism and philosophy

* First batch of reviews now online

* New reviews added regularly

* Part of the redesigned Marx & Philosophy Society web site

* Edited by Sean Sayers and members of the Society

For reviews and to subscribe go to: http://www.marxandphilosophy.org.uk/reviewofbooks   

Recent reviews:

J.K. Gibson-Graham: The End of Capitalism (As We Knew It): A Feminist Critique of Political Economy (Reviewed by Richard Schmidt)

J.K. Gibson-Graham: A Post-Capitalist Politics (Reviewed by Richard Schmidt)

Amy E. Wendling: Karl Marx on Technology and Alienation (Reviewed by Chris Arthur)

Bill Martin: Ethical Marxism: The Categorical Imperative of Liberation (Reviewed by David Marjoribanks)

Bernard Reginster: The Affirmation of Life: Nietzsche on Overcoming Nihilism (Reviewed by Meade McCloughan)

Andrew Chitty and Martin McIvor (Eds.): Karl Marx and Contemporary Philosophy (Reviewed by David McLellan)

The Marx and Philosophy Review of Books is brought to you by the Marx & Philosophy Society: http://www.marxandphilosophy.org.uk

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Pirates Only

PIRATES AND PIRACY – MATERIAL REALITIES AND CULTURAL MYTHS

Editorial Notes: Pirates and Piracy – Material Realities and Cultural Myths

By Andrew Opitz

This special issue of darkmatter sets out to examine the complicated and often incongruous cultural meanings assigned to pirates and piracy in the twenty-first century. Debates about piracy have long featured certain telling contradictions. At different times, pirates have been seen as both violent monsters and colorful folk heroes. They have been cast by historians and cultural critics as both capitalist marauders and militant workers fighting for a restoration of the commons. How can we account for these seemingly incompatible visions? Of course, it is important to observe that pirates were hardly uniform in their social and political orientations. Some were greedy opportunists. Some were desperate sailors and slaves driven to mutiny. Others were somewhere in-between. We should also recognize that our understanding of piracy is powerfully shaped by our economic interests and our relationship with the law. The propertied targets of piratical theft are quick to view pirates as criminal actors outside the bounds of civilized behaviour, but the dispossessed are inclined to take a more nuanced approach that admires the defiance of the pirates at the same time as it fears their violence.

It is also important to note that pirates now have a symbolic importance that transcends the basic material conditions behind their banditry. Our enduring cultural fascination with pirates is tied to their status as celebrated figures of rebellion and nonconformity in popular novels and films. Although the actual history of maritime robbery is sordid and contradictory, the pirate has become a compelling symbol of freedom: freedom from oppressive work routines; freedom from polite behaviour; freedom from institutional controls; freedom from restrictive property laws; freedom from unjust social conventions surrounding race and gender roles. We now apply the pirate label to an assortment of activities – from the formation of transgressive sexual identities to the technology-assisted defiance of copyright law – that have little or nothing to do with the sea or those who “go down to it in ships.” The articles assembled in this special issue take a broad approach to the study of pirates and piracy, examining diverse subjects ranging from the working-class politics of transatlantic piracy in the eighteenth century to the actions of Nigerian media pirates in the twenty-first century and recent debates about Somali pirates within East African immigrant communities in North America.

The authors who contributed to this special issue of darkmatter have approached the cultural politics of pirates and piracy from different angles. They are historians, literary critics, legal scholars and media/cultural theorists. However, their scholarship is linked by the shared understanding that modern piracy, like the modern world itself, is inextricably bound to the history of colonial and neo-colonial relations of production and the legacy of racial and class conflict that they produced – a history that forged the global capitalist order that continues to shape our everyday relationships with other people. 

Pirates are often dismissed in the media as exotic anachronisms – colorful characters out of step with present realities. But the forces that produced, and continue to produce pirates – global shipping, the extraction of resources from colonial and neocolonial holdings, the mobilization and control of labor in the service of investment capital – still drive our world today. Studying pirates and their ongoing cultural resonance is hardly a frivolous activity. It is necessary for a true understanding of the socially uneven, violent and unstable world in which we live – a world that is still very much at sea.

Andrew Opitz
Guest Editor

Editorial Notes: Pirates and Piracy – Material Realities and Cultural Myths by Andrew Opitz • 20 Dec 09

Revolution Bootlegged: Pirate Resistance in Nigeria’s Broken Infrastructure by Jason Crawford • 20 Dec 09

Digital Pirates and the Enclosure of the Intellect by Irmak Ertuna • 20 Dec 09

Where’s the Booty?: The Stakes of Textual and Economic Piracy as Seen Through the Work of Kathy Acker by Paige Sweet • 20 Dec 09

Life Under the Jolly Roger: Reflections on Golden Age Piracy – Interview with Gabriel Kuhn by Nora Räthzel • 20 Dec 09

Hostis humani generis. History of a multi-faceted word by Salvatore Poier • 20 Dec 09

Atlantic Orientalism: How Language in Jefferson’s America Defeated the Barbary Pirates by Angela Sutton • 20 Dec 09

Voyage of the Black Joke: Piracy and Gallows Humor in an Era of Primitive Accumulation by Andrew Opitz • 20 Dec 09

The Pirate and the Colonial Project: Kanhoji Angria by Derek L. Elliott • 20 Dec 09

Unravelling Narratives of Piracy: Discourses of Somali Pirates by Muna Ali and Zahra Murad • 20 Dec 09

‘Liberty or Life!’: The Convict Pirates of the Wellington by Erin Ihde • 20 Dec 09

See: http://www.darkmatter101.org/site/category/journal/issues/5-pirates-and-piracy/

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Radical Education against Capital

A RETURN TO EDUCATIONAL APARTHEID? CRITICAL EXAMINATIONS OF RACE, SCHOOLS, AND SEGREGATION

A Critical Education Series

The editors of Critical Education are pleased to announce our second editorial series.  This current series will focus on the articulation of race, schools, and segregation, and will analyze the extent to which schooling may or may not be returning to a state of educational apartheid.

On June 28, 2007, the Supreme Court of the US by a 5-4 margin voted to overturn Jefferson County’s four decade old desegregation plan.  The Meredith case from Jefferson County was conjoined with the Parents Involved in Community Schools case from Seattle, WA, for which a group comprised primarily of white parents from two neighborhoods alleged some 200 students were not admitted to schools of their choice, based on “integration tie-breakers,” which prevented many from attending facilities nearest to their homes.

In Justice Roberts plurality opinion, he argued, “The parties and their amici debate which side is more faithful to the heritage of Brown [v. Board of Education, 1954], but the position of the plaintiffs in Brown was spelled out in their brief and could not have been clearer: ‘The Fourteenth Amendment prevents states from according differential treatment to American children on the basis of their color or race’.  What do racial classifications at issue here do, if not accord differential treatment on the basis of race?”  And, later, “The way to stop discrimination based on race is to stop discrimination on the basis of race.”

Aside from the fact that the plaintiff in the Louisville case ultimately won her appeal in the Jefferson County system, placing her white child into precisely the school she wanted based on her appeal to the district, demonstrating that the system worked, it is the goal of this series to investigate the extent to which Justice Roberts and the other concurring justices have taken steps to erode the civil rights of the racially marginalized in order to serve the interests of the dominant racial group.  It took just a little over 50 years (of monumental effort) to get a case to the Supreme Court to overturn Plessy v. Ferguson. Now, has it taken just a little over 50 years to scale that decision back with the overturning of voluntary desegregation plans in Jefferson County and Seattle School District 1?

In 2003, with a different make-up, the Supreme Court foreshadowed this 2007 verdict by rendering a ‘split decision’ regarding the University of Michigan admission policies. In the Gratz v. Bollinger case, the Supreme Court decided 6-3 that the University of Michigan needed to modify their admission criteria, which assigned points based on race.  However, in the Grutter v. Bollinger case, the Supreme Court decided 5-4 to uphold the University of Michigan Law School’s ruling that race could be one of several factors when selecting students because it furthers “a compelling interest in obtaining the educational benefits that flow from a diverse student body.”

In Jonathan Kozol’s 2005 sobering profile of American education, Shame of the Nation: The Restoration of Apartheid Schooling in America, a lamenting follow-up to his earlier work, Savage Inequalities, he already began to illustrate the retrograde process many public school systems have undergone related to racial balance.  His critique of these pre-Brown-like- segregation systems was balanced, ironically, by rather effusive praise of the Jefferson County system, which attempted to keep this balance in check. Does the 2007 decision remove this one shining example?

Though the course toward educational apartheid may not be pre-destined, what is the likelihood that the “path of least resistance” will lead toward racial separation? How does the lingering legacy of residential segregation complicate this issue?  What connections can we draw to and/or how might further racial segregation exacerbate issues of poverty or unemployment?  Further, where do race and class collide?  And, where is a more distinct analysis necessary? Finally, what can we surmise about the ongoing achievement gap if, in fact, apartheid schooling is afoot?

Undoubtedly, at worst, this decision could prove to be a harbinger for the death of a waning democracy.  Without a compelling public education that helps all our children become critical consumers and citizens, what kind of society might we imagine for ourselves?  At best, though, this decision could marshal the sensibilities of a critical cadre of educators, social workers, health care workers, activists, attorneys, business leaders, etc. to stand in resistance to the injustice that is becoming our nation’s public school system. 

In an LA Times opinion piece a few days before this 2007 decision, Edward Lazarus argued, “Although they may have disagreed about Brown’s parameters, most Americans coalesced around the decision as a national symbol for our belated rejection of racism and bigotry.  Using Brown as a sword to outlaw affirmative action of any kind would destroy that worthy consensus and transform it into just another mirror reflecting a legal and political culture still deeply fractured over race.”  As Allan Johnson (2006), in Privilege, Power, and Difference, claims, there can be no healing until the wounding stops.  Likewise, paraphrasing Malcolm X’s provocation about so-called progress, he reminded us that although the knife in the back of African-Americans may once have been nine inches deep, that it has only been removed a few inches does not indicate progress.  Will this decision plunge the knife further?

Series editors Adam Renner (from Louisville, KY) and Doug Selwyn (formerly of Seattle, WA) invite essays that treat any of the above questions and/or other questions that seek clarity regarding race, education, schooling, and social justice.  We seek essays that explore the history of segregation, desegregation, and affirmative action in the US and abroad.  While we certainly invite empirical/quantitative research regarding these issues, we also welcome more qualitative studies, as well as philosophical/ theoretical work, which provide deep explorations of these phenomena. We especially invite narratives from parents or students who have front line experience of segregation and/or educational apartheid. Additionally, and importantly, we seek essays of resistance, which document the struggle for racial justice in particular locales and/or suggestions for how we might wrestle toward more equitable schooling for all children.

Please visit the Critical Education website for submission criteria: http://www.criticaleducation.org. Also feel free to contact the series editors, Adam Renner (arenner@bellarmine. edu) or Doug Selwyn (dselw001@plattsburg h.edu) with any questions. 

E. Wayne Ross, Professor, Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy, University of British Columbia, 2125 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada, 604-822-2830, wayne.ross@ubc. ca, http://www.ewaynero ss.net

Critical Education: http://www.criticaleducation.org

Cultural Logic: http://eserver.org/clogic

Workplace: A Journal for Academic Labor: http://www.workplace-gsc.com

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