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Michael Lowy

Michael Lowy

ON CHANGING THE WORLD – BY MICHAEL LÖWY

NEW FROM HAYMARKET BOOKS

ON CHANGING THE WORLD: Essays in Political Philosophy, from Karl Marx to Walter Benjamin

BY Michael Löwy

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This collection of lively and insightful essays – including several translated to english for the first time – cover a wide range of topics and figures too often neglected by the dominant trends in Marxist literature. Löwy offers a unique exploration of the role of romanticism as one of the key sources of the Marxist critque of capitalist civilization. And he shows how Rosa Luxemburg, Antonio Gramsci, and Walter Benjamin all share an understanding of socialism as the only truly human alternative to the modern forms of exploitation and oppression found in a capitalist society. Similar themes are pursued in the engaging essays on religion, utopia, and other topics.

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“Only the Stalinist gospel of convenient quotations is dead, not Marxist writing. Michael Löwy illustrates the vitality of the latter. His collection of essays, combining scholarship with passion, impresses by its sweep and scope. It ranges from liberation theology to the problem of ‘progress’ in Walter Benjamin. And, since it tackles such issues as utopia and nationalism, the book is also highly topical.”
—Daniel Singer, author, Deserter from Death

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MICHAEL LÖWY is research director in sociology at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris. He is the author of many books, including Romanticism Against the Tide of Modernity, and Marxism and Liberation Theology.

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Released March 2013

Trade Paper $19.00 | 210 pages | ISBN: 9781608461899 | Bulk discounts available

Click to buy and for more details: http://goo.gl/Tmrey

For review or desk copies, or to schedule an interview with the author, contact

John McDonald, john@haymarketbooks.org, 773-583-7884, www.haymarketbooks.org

First published at: http://www.historicalmaterialism.org/news/distributed/new-from-haymarket-on-changing-the-world-essays-in-political-philosophy-from-karl-marx-to-walter-benjamin-by-michael-lowy

**END**

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLjxeHvvhJQ (live, at the Belle View pub, Bangor, north Wales); and at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkP_Mi5ideo (new remix, and new video, 2012)

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Online Publications at: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Inca

THE LEFT IN LATIN AMERICA

THE LEFT IN LATIN AMERICA: History, Present, Perspectives

International Symposium

Universityof Sao Paulo- FFLCH – History Department               

September 11, 12 and 13, 2012 (from 9am to 10pm)

 

Schedule

 

Tuesday, September 11

OPENING: Emília Viotti da Costa

09:00 h. (AH): FROM PETISM TO LULISM: THE PT YESTERDAY AND TODAY: André Singer – Lincoln Secco – Tales Ab’Sáber – Cyro Garcia

09:00 h. (AG): LEFT, DICTATORSHIPS AND HUMAN RIGHTS Pedro Pomar – Jorge Souto Maior – Olgária Matos – Sergio Adorno

09:00 h. (CPJ): INTELECTUALS AND MARXISM IN LATIN AMERICA: Bernardo Ricupero – Lidiane Soares Rodrigues – Marcos Napolitano – Maurício Cardoso

14:00 h. (AH): COMMUNISM IN THE HISTORY OF BRAZIL: Milton Pinheiro – Apoena Cosenza – Frederico Falcão – Marly Vianna

14:00 h. (AG): CHINA AND LATIN AMERICA: Wilson N. Barbosa – Marcos Cordeiro Pires – Luis Antonio Paulino – Vladimir Milton Pomar

14:00 h. (CPJ): CUBA: PAST AND PRESENT OF THE REVOLUTION: Luiz E. Simões de Souza – Joana Salém – Silvia Miskulin – José R. Máo Jr.

17:00 h. (AH): NATURAL RESOURCES, ENERGY AND CONTINENTAL INTEGRATION: Ildo Sauer – Ariovaldo U. de Oliveira – Mónica Arroyo – Raimundo Rodrigues Pereira

17:00 h. (AG): COMPENSATORY SOCIAL PROGRAMS: THE WAY OUT OF POVERTY?: RuyBraga- Eduardo Januario – Maria Cristina Cacciamali – Fúlvia Rosenberg

17:00 h. (CPJ): PERU, ECUADOR, BOLIVIA: INDIANISM AND ANDINE COSMOVISION: Vivian Urquidi – Enrique Amayo – Tadeu Breda – Mónica Bruckmann

17:00 h. (RXCP): LANGUAGES AND LITERATURE: RESISTENCE DISCOURSES: Elvira Narvaja de Arnoux – Graciela Foglia – Adrián Fanjul – Pablo Gasparini

19:30 h. (AH): THE STUDENTS STRUGGLE IN LATIN AMERICA: Clara Saraiva – Alejandro Lipcovich – Lucia Sioli – Mario Costa

19:30 h. (AG): LATIN AMERICA IN INTERNATIONAL GEOPOLITICS: André Martin – Leonel Itaussu A. Mello – Rodrigo Medina Zagni – Manoel Fernandes

19:30 h. (CPJ): COMMUNISM IN LATIN AMERICA: Antonio C. Mazzeo – Marcos Del Roio – Victor Vigneron – Kennedy Ferreira

 

Wednesday, September 12

09:00 h. (AH): VENEZUELA AND  THE BOLIVARIAN REVOLUTION: Rafael Duarte Villa – Gilberto Maringoni – Flavio Benedito – Flavio Mendes

09:00 h. (AG): SOCIAL NETWORKS, DIGITAL ACTION AND POLITICAL ACTIVISM: Sergio Amadeu – Raphael Tsavkko – Rodrigo Vianna – Luiz Carlos Azenha

09:00 h. (CPJ): BOLIVIA: FROM THE POPULAR ASSEMBLY TO EVO MORALES: Everaldo Andrade – Diego Siqueira – Cristian Henkel – Igor Ojeda

14:00 h. (AH): MARXISM IN LATIN AMERICA: Michael Lowy – Osvaldo Coggiola – Luiz Bernardo Pericás – Carlos Guilherme Mota

14:00 h. (AG): MEXICO: FROM ZAPATA TO ZAPATISM: Waldo Lao Sánchez – Igor Fuser – Jorge Grespan – Azucena Jaso

14:00 h. (CPJ): LEFT BOOK PUBLISHERS IN LATIN AMERICA: Marisa Midori – Flamarion Maués – Rogerio Chaves  – Sandra Reimão

14:00 h. (RXCP): SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY: A LEFT WING APPROACH: Renato Dagnino – Carlos Sanches – Ciro T. Correa – Marcos B. de Oliveira

17:00 h. (AH): ANARCHISM IN LATIN AMERICA: Edson Passetti – Marcos A. Silva – Ricardo Rugai – Margareth Rago

17:00 h. (AG): THE LEFT AND THE POPULISM: Maria Helena Capelato – Maria Ligia Prado – Antonio Rago – Fernando Sarti Ferreira

17:00 h. (CPJ): COLOMBIA: FROM ‘VIOLENCE’ TO THE ENDLESS WAR: Antonio Carlos R. de Moraes – Yuri Martins Fontes – Ana Carolina Ramos – Pietro Lora Alarcón

17:00 h. (RXCP): SOCIALISM AND ANTI-IMPERIALISM IN LATIN AMERICA: Vitor Schincariol – Carlos César Almendra – Fabio Luis – Alexandre Hecker

19:30 h. (AH): MARXISM IN BRAZIL: Paulo Arantes – Dainis Karepovs – Armando Boito – Ricardo Musse

19:30 h. (AG): ARMED STRUGGLE IN BRAZIL: A BALANCE SHEET: Carlos Eugénio Clemente – João Quartim de Moraes – Ivan Seixas – Antonio R. Espinosa

19:30 h. (CPJ): FEMINISM AND SOCIALISM IN LATIN AMERICA: Fernanda Estima – Cecília Toledo – Sara Albieri – Janete Luzia Leite

 

Thursday, September 13

09:00 h. (AH): PICKETS, OCCUPIED FACTORIES, SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Néstor Pitrola – Josiane Lombardi – Atenágoras Teixeira Lopes – Rodrigo Ricupero

09:00 h. (AG):  THE LEFT AND THE ENVIRONMENT: Francisco del Moral Hernández – Mauricio Waldman – Ana Paula Salviatti – Gilson Dantas

09:00 h. (CPJ): SOCIALISM AND SOCIAL-DEMOCRACY IN LATIN AMERICA: Adalberto Coutinho – Gonzalo Rojas – Lucio Flavio de Almeida – Claudio Batalha

14:00 h. (AH): THE STRUGGLE FOR LAND IN LATIN AMERICA: Gilmar Mauro – Zilda Iokoi – Horacio Martins de Carvalho – Valeria De Marcos

14:00 h. (AG): THE LEFT FRONT IN ARGENTINA(AND BRAZIL): Luis Mauro S. Magalhães – Pablo Rieznik – Valério Arcary – João Batista Araújo ‘Babá’

14:00 h. (CPJ): LATIN AMERICA: IMMUNE TO THE CRISIS?: José Menezes Gomes – Plínio de Arruda Sampaio Jr. – Leda Paulani -Ramón Peña Castro

17:00 h. (AH): THE WORKING CLASS IN LATIN AMERICAN HISTORY: Ricardo Antunes – Agnaldo dosSantos- Sean Purdy – Mauro Iasi

17:00 h. (AG): LEFT, CHURCHES, SEXUAL DIVERSITY AND HOMOPHOBIA: Laerte – Horacio Gutiérrez – Jean Wyllys – Maria Fernanda Pinto

17:00 h. (CPJ): UNIVERSITY DILEMMAS IN LATIN AMERICA: Gladys Beatriz Barreyro – Afrânio Catani – César Minto – João Flavio Moreira

17:00 h. (RXCP): PARAGUAY: FROM THE WAR TO ITAIPU: Cristiana Vasconcelos – Dorival Goncalves – Brás Batista Vaz – Filipe Canavese

19:30 h. (AH): LATIN AMERICA, THE WORLD CRISIS AND THE LEFT: Plínio de Arruda Sampaio – Jorge Altamira – Ricardo Canese – Valter Pomar

19:30 h. (AG): DRUGS, DRUG TRAFICKING  AND CAPITALISM IN LATIN AMERICA: Henrique Carneiro – Julio Delmanto – Rosana Schwartz – José Arbex

19:30 h. (CPJ): LIBERATION THEOLOGY IN THE 21st CENTURY: Fernando Torres Londoño – Lucelmo Lacerda – Valéria Melki Busin – Jung Mo Sung

AH: History Amphitheater / AG: Geography Amphitheater/ CPJ: Caio Prado Junior/ RXCP: Reinaldo Carneiro Pessoa

 

On-Line Inscriptions: www.esquerdaamlatina.fflch.usp.br      

Support: GMarx – NEPHE – CEMOP – Mouro      

Free Entrance   Frequency certificates will be provided

Organization:LincolnSecco – Osvaldo Coggiola – Rodrigo Ricupero – Jorge Grespan – Marcos A. Silva – Francisco Alambert

Co-Organization: PROLAM (Post Graduation Program in Integration of Latin America) – USP

 

**END**

 

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

 

‘Maximum levels of boredom

Disguised as maximum fun’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLjxeHvvhJQ (live, at the Belle View pub, Bangor, north Wales)  

 

‘Human Herbs’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

‘Stagnant’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkP_Mi5ideo  

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

‘The Lamb’ by William Blake – set to music by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vw3VloKBvZc

 

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

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

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic

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

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Online Publications at: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Glenn Rikowski’s MySpace Blog: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski/blog

Karl Polanyi

TWELTH INTERNATIONAL KARL POLANYI CONFERENCE

Twelfth International Karl Polanyi Conference
Karl Polanyi and Latin America

National University General Sarmiento Los Polvorines­Buenos Aires, Argentina November 8­9, 2012
Co-organized by the Conurbano Institute, National University General Sarmiento, Argentina and the Karl Polanyi Institute of Political Economy, Concordia University, Canada

CALL FOR PAPERS
At the present time, can nations and peoples defend their sovereignty and protect their societies from subordination to global capital and dependence on economic and political centers?

In Latin America, in particular, there is evidence of encouraging signs:
a) National-popular processes supported by new social movements that question the neoliberal economic rationale and in some cases propose new paradigms: socialism for the XXIst century, vivir bien/ buen vivir, that give priority to guaranteeing the livelihood of all citizens, respecting cultural diversity and harmony with nature.
b) Interstate forms of solidarity (UNASUR, CELAC)1 to resist North American hegemony that increases the capacity for greater autarchy and sovereignty to confront the economic, political, and cultural
domination of the neoliberal project and the continuous commodification of all aspects of life.
c) The search for new frameworks of social and political thought, particularly the so-called “decoloniality” that converges with important historical trends in the region. Others include the theology and pedagogy of liberation, dependency theory, new variants of socialism, the peasants’ movement, the worldview of indigenous peoples, the contemporary feminist struggle against patriarchy and the struggle for the rights of nature.

In Polanyi’s terms, are these processes temporary responses to the crisis of the world capitalist order, or true “counter-movements” that challenge neoconservative projects and the dominant neoliberal paradigm? If so, can they lead to the re-embedding of the economy into more just and democratic societies? Can this be a historic turning point that could spread to other societies that have experienced capitalist development and now confront problems of their own and of the planet, resulting in another “great transformation”, or an “another globalization”? Is there a risk that the latent global crisis will push democracy inLatin America and other regions of the world towards new forms of fascism?

Given the structural failure of the global market to provide workers with dignified wages – the erosion of the social foundations of life as foreseen by Marx and Polanyi – and inspired by the Union of South American Nations , Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, the World Social Forum’s slogan that “another world (and another economy) is possible”, civil society organizations and increasingly governments in Latin America, are developing initiatives to promote new forms of self-managed and associational work and to revitalize indigenous communal activities. What is the transformational potential of these tendencies? How can the popular masses protect themselves when the management of the global capital crisis is focused on the interests of core countries? Is it sufficient to promote associationalism and redistribution, or is it necessary to reinvent the State? In particular, should generalized cash income transfers to individuals or families that broaden redistribution, a concept central to Polanyi, become a new right of citizens to basic income, thereby reducing indigence and poverty? Could we thus achieve a just society without transforming the relationship between the state, the economy, and society as well as the socioeconomic models that today reinforce the concentration of economic power?

The ecological crisis – the erosion of the natural foundations of life also foreseen by Marx and Polanyi – has led to a multiplicity of local and global movements to defend the balance with nature lost to global market forces. Is it possible to include our long-term concern about the planet in the short-term agendas of governments oriented to legitimize themselves through elections or the struggle of popular social movements for survival? If the possibility of unlimited growth is ruled out (which was one of Polanyi’s concerns), can the new movements for responsible consumption contribute to building “another economy”?

Regardless of the nomenclature – social economy, solidarity economy, community economy, popular economy, social and solidarity economy, to name a few – new initiatives are emerging in both the North and in the South. Are they similar in scope and in scale in the center and in the periphery? What role does planning and restructuring of national or regional economies play in an era of globalization (greater autarchy, as in food sovereignty)? Can new forms of reciprocity and fair trade (truly non commoditized) be amplified at the international level? How plausible is the convergence and complementarities between these movements for another economy in the North and in the South?

The resonance of Karl Polanyi’s ideas on these issues is recognized by scholars across disciplines. Since the 2012 international conference is being held in Latin America, it will address other issues that are important for Polanyi scholars:

Why did Polanyi not include the colonization process of America and the co-constitution of America and Europe in his reconstruction of the process of evolution of the market and capitalism, that are at the core of decolonial thought today?

Why did Polanyi not show any interest in the issue of development, the paradigm for social transformation in this region that dominated the twentieth century?

What can we obtain by combining Marx’s approach to the modes of production, ever present in the social sciences and in the history of this region, with Polanyi’s patterns of integration?

Are there important and relevant differences between the liberalism to which Polanyi referred to and the neoliberalism of today?

How can we interpret Polanyi’s analysis of religion in terms of Latin American liberation theology?

Can we apply Polanyi’s analysis of corporatism to the present structure of Latin American societies?

How can we compare Polanyi’s analysis of the crisis of international capitalism with the contemporary global crisis and, in particular, with reference to governance and interstate relations?

As in all previous International Polanyi Conferences, papers on the life and work of Karl Polanyi are welcome as well as papers from academics and /or professionals on the contemporary relevance of Karl Polanyi’s thought.

Simultaneous interpretation (Spanish / English) will be available.
Abstracts (maximum 250 words) should be sent before March 15th, 2012 to: polanyi@alcor.concordia.ca

Conference Organizing Committee:
Honorary Chairperson: Kari Polanyi Levitt, Mc Gill University, Canada
José Luís Coraggio, National University General Sarmiento, Argentina
Margie Mendell, Concordia University, Canada
Jean­Louis Laville, Conservatoire national des arts et métiers (CNAM, Paris), France
Antonio David Cattani, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

Registration Fees:
Non­Latin Americans:
Registration fee: $250 US – Meals: $50 US (Two lunches and coffee breaks)
Latin Americans:
Registration fees: $150 US – Meals: $50 (Two lunches and coffee break)
Students:
Registration Fee: $50 US – Meals: $50 (Two lunches and coffee break)

**END**

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

‘Maximum levels of boredom

Disguised as maximum fun’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLjxeHvvhJQ (live, at the Belle View pub, Bangor, north Wales)  

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a new song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

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

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

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Online Publications at: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

2009102016401brazilmid2[1]POLITICS, POETICS AND POPULAR EDUCATION IN BRAZILIAN CINEMA, 1962-1979

‘Stronger are the powers of the people’: politics, poetics and popular education in Brazilian cinema, 1962-1979

December 4 (6.30pm – 10pm) 
December 5th and 6th (2pm to 10pm)

At No-w-here, First Floor, 316-318 Bethnal Green Road, London, E2 OAG

Full programme and further information: http://www.no-w-here.org.uk/index.php?cat=1&subCat=docdetail&&id=212

The late 1950s and early 1960s were a period of intense social and economic transformation in Brazil. It was also a period of political upheaval, curbed by the 1964 military coup, and one in which the relations between politics, poetics and popular education, the role of the cultural producer, the vanguard-popular-mass culture nexus, were absolutely central to the cultural and political debate.

‘Stronger are the powers of the people’, a programme of films and debates curated and presented by Brazilian philosopher, artist and political activist Rodrigo Nunes, uses Brazilian films from 1962 to 1979 as ‘monuments’ whose animating forces can be put again into play to understand how the problems posed by the period are expressed in the aesthetic and political choices of filmmakers.

In particular, it examines one of the most neglected experiences of that time – the Popular Culture Centres (CPCs) – as a central node of the practical and theoretical articulation of those debates. With this, the programme addresses them not only in their historical situatedness, but above all in relation to those problems that animate artistic and political practice in the present, when so much is made of the intersections between politics, art, and pedagogy, and there is a growing interest in recovering past experiences of this convergence – above all, from the 1960s, and increasingly, from peripheral countries such as Brazil. What can the problems of those years teach us regarding what we are or would like to be doing today? How can the proposals emerging in this field then – Paulo Freire’s pedagogy, Liberation Theology, Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed,tropicalismo, Helio Oiticica’s, Lygia Clark’s and Lygia Pape’s researches, cinema novo – resonate with us today?

The programme includes the rare collective work Five Times Favela, the only CPC-produced film, and the first film for many of that generation’s directors; Glauber Rocha’s internationally acclaimed Land in Anguish and Antonio das Mortes; Ruy Guerra’s The Guns and its sequel, The Fall; and Leon Hirszman’s ABC of the Strike.

Rodrigo Nunes has a PhD in philosophy from Goldsmiths College, University of London, where he prepared a thesis on immanence and philosophy in Foucault and Deleuze with a grant from CAPES – Brazilian government. As an organiser, popular educator and artist, he has been involved in many political initiatives in Latin America and Europe, including the organisation of the first three editions of the World Social Forum. He is a member of the editorial collective of Turbulence (http://www.turbulence.org.uk). His work, as writer and translator, has appeared in such publications as ephemera, Mute, Transform, and he has forthcoming papers in Radical Philosophy and Third Text.

This project is supported by Raven Row, the Brazilian embassy in London, and No.w.here.

Films

Cinco vezes favela (Five times favela), various authors, 1962: The only film the Popular Culture Centre (CPC) brought to completion, it comprises five episodes directed by Miguel Borges, Joaquim Pedro de Andrade, Caca Diegues, Marcos Farias and Leon Hirszman, and was responsible for a split between the CPC and the cinema novo group. Some of the key figures in the CPC reportedly considered the film both a commercial and a political flop, and filmmakers such as Diegues and Arnaldo Jabor (though not Hirszman) left after decrying a narrow, instrumental conception of the relation between aesthetics and politics. With a cast including many of Augusto Boal’s colleagues from Teatro de Arena (and, most notably, CPC founder Oduvaldo Viana Filho), it captures a group of young filmmakers grappling with the same problems – how to create a form adequate to the specificity of Brazilian content? How to do so in a way that reaches beyond a middle-class audience, and plays a role in the transformation of Brazilian society from below? What is popular culture, and how must the artist deal with it? – while working through a host of influences, from Russian revolutionary cinema to neo-realism. Joaquim Pedro de Andrade’s Couro de gato (Catgut) was included in a list of the 100 best shorts of all times selected by the Clermont-Ferrand Festival.

Os Fuzis (The guns), Ruy Guerra, 1964: One of the greatest achievements of the first crop of cinema novo – alongside Nelson Pereira dos Santos’ Vidas secas (Barren lives) and Glauber Rocha’s Deus e o Diabo na Terra do Sol (Black God White Devil) (1964) –, it showcases many of the period’s defining traits: the rural Northeastern setting, the use of location, natural light and non-professional actors. At the same time, in its plot about the existential and moral crises undergone by a group of soldiers sent to a small town to stop the starving victims of the draught from attacking a food warehouse, it provides in arguably the clearest way the keys to reading some of the political limitations of cinema novo at this stage. It won the Silver Bear at the Berlin Festival.

Terra em transe (Land in anguish), Glauber Rocha, 1967: Part roman à clef about the Joao Goulart government and the 1964 military coup, part schematic description of the dynamics of the post-colonial world, part baroque allegory about the destiny of Latin America, part gauntlet thrown at the right and left of post- coup Brazil: one of Rocha’s most celebrated films, it finds the effects of his ‘epic-didactic’ cinema all the more effective because its target is much clearer. A whole generation at a crossroads appears in the vacillations of the main character, his multiple allegiances to social transformation and to his own class, to aesthetics and to politics, to utopia, the heat of the struggle, and his professional situation as a hired pen; the choice for armed struggle, which the film suggests in ambiguous fashion, was already brewing as it was produced. Nominated to the Palme d’Or at Cannes, best film at the Havana Film Festival.

O Dragão da Maldade contra o Santo Guerreiro (Antônio das Mortes), Glauber Rocha, 1969: Rocha’s first international co-production, first film in colour, and first using direct sound. He would often refer to it as ‘my western’, but, despite some nods at John Ford and Howard Hawks, it is clear that the oeuvre in question here is above all his own. Like a revision of his two earlier films that relaunches its questions, but also seems to run out of answers, it already points towards some of the procedures (such as the long, semi-improvised takes) that would characterise his work in the exile that immediately follows it. The plot finds Antônio das Mortes, the gunman hired by landowners to kill cangaceiros (highwaymen), brought out of retirement for one last job which, once executed, causes him to question the side on which he has fought over the years. Won best director and a nomination to the Palme d’Or at Cannes.

A Queda (The Fall), Ruy Guerra, 1976: An accident at a construction site, resulting in one death, sets one worker off on a struggle for justice that exposes the mechanisms of exploitation and the class relations of a country that had undergone one decade of fast-paced ‘conservative modernisation’ at the hands of the military. As a sort of sequel to the classic The Guns (1964), following the fate of those characters as they move from enforcers of exploitation to exploited, it offers more than a snapshot of the period: the correspondent time lapses in fiction and reality capture the passage of a chunk of Brazilian history between the two films, and, therefore, also the transformations in cinematographic approaches to the social and political between the two moments. Equally daring in content and form, and in the originality of the adequacy of one to the other, it won the Silver Bear at Berlin.

ABC da greve (ABC of the strike), Leon Hirszman, 1979-91: While preparing the cinema version of groundbreaking 1957 Teatro de Arena play Eles não usam black tie on location in the ABC (the auto industry belt around São Paulo), Hirszman has the opportunity to document the most powerful strikes in over a decade of Brazilian history. The latter would become a catalyst and a convergence point for the opposition to the military regime, intellectuals, artists, returning exiles, eventually leading to the creation of the Worker’s Party – whose biggest leader, Lula, was the president of the metalworkers union who led the strikes. Running into problems with the regime’s censorship because of the material, Hirszman dies in 1987 leaving the film unfinished until 1991, when his two daughters and son eventually release a final cut. The narration and text are provided by Ferreira Gullar, poet, who was president of the CPC at the time of the military coup.

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

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

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