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Daily Archives: November 22nd, 2011


Samir Amin


Samir Amin at the Centre for the Study of Social and Global Justice (CSSGJ), Nottingham University.

On 1 December 2011, Samir Amin, the internationally renowned political economist, will be involved in two events at the Centre for the Study of Social and Global Justice (CSSGJ) at Nottingham University.

1. Author meets Audience session: discussion of three of Samir Amin’s books by CSSGJ members with a reply by the author.

Sara Motta on ‘Eurocentrism’

Jon Mansell on ‘The Liberal Virus’

Andreas Bieler on ‘Global History’

Thursday, 1 December at 12 noon in B62, Law and Social Science Building



2. CSSGJ Annual Lecture 2011: Samir Amin – ‘The Trajectory of Historical Capitalism’.

Thursday, 1 December, 5.30 to 7 p.m. in B62, Law and Social Science Building.


These meetings are open to the wider public and everybody is welcome to attend. For more information, please contact Andrew Gibson at


Prof. Andreas Bieler,

Professor of Political Economy,

School of Politics and International Relations,

University of Nottingham,

UK-Nottingham  NG7 2RD,

Personal website:

Tel.: 0115-951 4492,

FAX: 0115-951 4859,

Trade union and global restructuring blog:

New book:


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Marxism and Culture


Centre for Applied Philosophy, Politics and Ethics
University of Brighton, UK

7th International Interdisciplinary Conference
Wednesday 5th – Friday 7th September 2012

Call for Papers

It is very rare for societies or institutions to change unless they are confronted by specific forms of resistance. This conference investigates those moments of historical change when existing orders are put into question. In particular, it seeks to challenge us to rethink ways in which we might understand resistance and asks us to read the past in order to inform the present through a focus on riot, revolt and revolution, and on the interplay between them.

Papers which address these themes from any discipline are welcome.

Suggested topics might include:

Modernism and post-modernism in the arts
What is revolution?
The French Revolution
20th-century revolutions
The neo-liberal revolution
Occupy Wall Street
Resistance today
Civil War
The politics of riot
Ethics of revolt
Resistance to change
Burke or Kant?
The limits of reform
Challenges to capitalism
Neo-liberal economics
Financial crisis: a real opportunity?
Postcolonial politics
Discourses of Resistance
Languages of Resistance

We anticipate that these and related issues will be of interest to people working in, among other areas, philosophy, political theory, politics, sociology, international relations, cultural studies, the arts, history, government and law.

Abstracts of no more than 300 words should be emailed by 6th January 2012, at the latest, to Nicola Clewer,

The conference fee is £210. This includes refreshments, lunch on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and a buffet dinner on the Thursday evening.

There are a limited number of places available for graduate students and for people who have no institutional affiliation at the reduced price of £105. Please indicate if you wish to be considered for one of these places when sending your abstract; or contact Nicola Clewer at as soon as possible.

Please note: the conference fee does not include accommodation and, unfortunately, we are unable to offer travel grants or other forms of financial assistance. A limited amount of reasonably priced student halls of residence accommodation is available on a first come first served basis.

For further information about the centre please see the CAPPE: OR

For further information about the conference and updates: or


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Cultural Studies


CALL FOR PAPERS: Design/History/Revolution

Deadline: December 7, 2011

Conference: April 27 & 28, 2012, The New School, NEW YORK CITY

Keynote speaker: Barry Bergdoll, The Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture & Design, The Museum of Modern Art

Whether by providing agitprop for revolutionary movements, an aesthetics of empire, or a language for numerous avant-gardes, design has changed the world. But how? Why? And under what conditions?  We propose a consideration of design as an historical agent, a contested category, and a mode of historical analysis.

This interdisciplinary conference aims to explore these questions and to open up new possibilities for understanding the relationships among design, history and revolution.

Casting a wide net, we define our terms broadly. We seek 20-minute papers that examine the roles of design in generating, shaping, remembering or challenging moments of social, political, economic, aesthetic, intellectual, technological, religious, and other upheaval. We consider a range of historical periods (ancient, pre-modern, early modern, modern, post- and post-post-modern) and geographical locations (“West,” “East,” “North,” South,” and contact zones between these constructed categories).  We examine not only designed objects (e.g., industrial design, decorative arts, graphic design, fashion) but also spaces (e.g., architecture, interiors, landscapes, urban settings) and systems (e.g., communications, services, governments).  And we welcome a diversity of disciplinary and inter-disciplinary approaches.

This conference brings together scholars from the humanities, sciences, and social sciences with designers, artists, and other creators. We hope not only to present multiple methodological approaches but also to foster conversations across traditional spatial, cultural, and disciplinary boundaries.

We list some possible subject areas below, and encourage you to propose others:

Design and political / cultural / economic revolution….. Design and technological revolution…. Design and the print revolution

Design and government…. Design and social movements…. Design and surveillance…. Design and empire….

Design and historicity…. Design and the sacred……Design and the avant-garde…..

Design and memory…. Design and philosophy/philosophies of design…. Design and literature / literature of design….

Design and the everyday…. Design and consumerism… Design and education…. Designed landscapes…. Design and the environment…Design and the city….

Design and science … Design and cybernetics ….


Please submit a 250-word abstract (maximum) and 1-page CV to:

 Laura Auricchio

Associate Professor of Art History and Chair of Humanities

The New School, NYC


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Society for Socialist Studies
Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences
May 30 – June 2, 2012, Waterloo, ON

You know the nearer your destination
The more you are slip sliding away
Paul Simon

There are always some people who think that their time has just begun while others fear that they have run the course of history. During the Great Depression of the 1930s, liberals lamented the decay of free market capitalism and social democrats were disappointed that the organized capitalism they had envisioned as an alternative to the unfettered rule of capital had not materialized. Communists saw the general crisis of capitalism as the perfect chance to advocate their Soviet alternative whereas the Nazis rebuilt the power of capital in the name of racial superiority. Reflecting on the economic and political conditions of the 1930s, Adorno and Horkheimer argued that the dialectic of enlightenment had transformed societies in such a way that the historical choices Rosa Luxemburg had seen – ‘socialism or barbarism’ – were replaced by different kinds of barbarism. Dissident intellectuals like Benjamin, Freud, and Arendt seconded such arguments. Keynes struck a more positive tone by suggesting to reinvent liberalism could by aligning it with reformist labour movements.

Without a doubt, Keynes embedded liberalism was much more human than Hitler’s and Stalin’s respective empires. Yet capitalism with a human face also had its costs: Democratic participation was subjugated to technocratic management processes, entire groups of people, notably women, ethnic minorities, and immigrants, were marginalized, the Global South was turned into a site of proxy-wars between capitalism and Soviet communism, and Mother Nature was misused in the name of never-ending prosperity. By the late 1960s, a new generation of protestors, inspired by theoreticians as Marcuse and Mills but also by poets and singers of a burgeoning counter-culture, rebelled against the one-dimensional men that the allegedly antagonistic systems of the East and the West had both produced. Critical thinking, it seemed, became a force of social change. Unfortunately, it didn’t take long  until the then New Left began to mimic Old Left party building, with each of the self-appointed vanguard organizations claiming exclusive possession of the eternal truth, or disintegrate into single-issue movements of all kinds. With hindsight, the respective insularities of those new proletarian vanguards and social movements look like a practical anticipation of postmodern thinking, which accompanied the rise of neoliberalism in the 1980s.

The collapse of the Soviet empire completed the complementary rise of neoliberalism on the right and postmodernism on the left. Ironically, even the small group of socialists who maintained that there are alternatives to capitalism and actually existing socialism abandoned their hopes after the latter ceased to exist. During the 1990s, neoliberals were as triumphant as Soviet propagandists had been in the 1930s, while the left was as scattered and disoriented as Great Depression liberals. Critical theories were as homeless as they were during that earlier period. The discontent with neoliberalism, which was growing over the 1990s, eventually produced a new generation of protestors who took to the streets without reading Marx, Marcuse or Mao. At a series of World Social Forums and similar events, each presenting a mix of protests and teach-ins, they sought to build a movement of movements – but couldn’t withstand the pressures of permanent warfare to which neoliberalism took refuge after the New Economy boom went bust. The Great Recession of recent years produced new kinds of discontent but, so far at least, nothing that amounts to a movement for progressive change. Ideas around which such movements could coalesce are also in short supply. Where they exist, they oscillate between abstract principles and small-scale experiments like in the days of Fourier and Owen. Unlike the utopian socialists of the early 19th century, though, we possess lots of experiences of failure that might contribute to a new socialist project.

In a world that has entirely changed since capitalism and socialist critique first developed old questions need to be answered in new ways. What is the relationship between our understandings of the world and visions of a new world? How much understanding of reality is possible in the first place? Where is the line between concrete utopias and eschatological beliefs? Who are the agents of progressive change? Which role can intellectuals play to support such change?

The Society of Socialist Studies invites proposals for papers, roundtables, and session addressing any aspect of the theme of “Crossroads: Critical Theories in an Uncertain World”.

Proposals for Roundtables and Sessions
At this point we are mainly interested in proposals for roundtables and sessions, which will then be posted on our website so that individuals can propose papers to all suggested sessions. Proposals for roundtables should include a list of participants. Unlike sessions they are not open for individual proposals.

Proposals for Papers
You can submit proposals for an individual paper at this point. The Programme Committee will try to find a place for it. Sessions open for individual proposals will be posted to our website as soon as they are accepted by the Programme Committee.

Please submit abstracts (maximum of 100 words) for any proposals before 15 January 2012 to: Ingo Schmidt, Programme Committee Chair,

Please note: The Society for Socialist Studies is committed to interdisciplinary work. Anyone suggesting a session, roundtable, or paper who is also affiliated with other associations participating in Congress may think about cross-listing their proposals.

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