left forum 2005

 Welcome to the 2005 Left Forum

The 2005 Left Forum brings together  intellectuals,in and out of the universities, and activists from labor and the social movements, to share their perspectives  and experiences  of the extraordinary crisis of our time. This conference comes at a time of a stunning Rightist victory  in the 2004 United States national elections, but also at one of the most exciting periods of political activism since the 1960s. We  are experiencing the bold, dangerous and militarist initiatives of the Bush administration in the Middle East; the global effects of Tsunami which has devas- tated large regions of East Asia; the worldwide right-wing offensive to dismantle the social and cultural gains of the past century; and the crisis of the labor and social movements  which, especially in the United  States, seem unable to stem the tide of reaction.

Yet, millions in the United States and around the world have joined in anti-war  and global justice protests; the fight to prevent  the privatization of social security is in high gear and involves diverse political groups; black intellectuals and activists are engaged in intense discussions about the future  of the black freedom movement; and in the face of rapid and steep decline of membership and influence for the first time in seventy years, unions are openly discussing how to revive the movement. It is generally a time of defeat for the Left, but there have been victories  for progressive  forces in Latin America, regroupment in Europe against the prevailing nee-liberal policies, and the emergence of new secular, democratic politics in parts of the Arab world, Asia and Africa. Stemming from  worldwide protests against corporate globalization, the World Social Forum and dozens of local and regional forums have brought hundreds of thousands of people  together  for discussion and the development of alternatives to capitalist globalization.

This conference is a place of reflection and debate about  these questions: how  can the Left rise from the ashes of frag­ mentation and defeat? What is the relationship between electoral  activity and direct action in the struggle to preserve and extend democracy? How to combat the permanent war at home as well as abroad? With the spectre of global warming and climate destabilization threatening life itself, what are the strategies for reversing the danger? How can we integrate  the struggles for sexual freedom,racial equality and immigrant rights with  the battle against capitalist globaliza­ tion and destruction of workers' gains and organizations?

We urge you to join the dialogue.



Speakers include: Tariq Ali, Barbara Ehrenreich, Joe Trippi, Joanne Landy, Bill Fletcher, Jr., Michelle Fine, Ralph Nader, Tod Ensign, Ellen Meiksins Wood, François Houtart, Frida Berrigan, Robin Kelley, Stanley Aronowitz, Ellen Willis, Gilbert Achcar, Stephen R. Shalom, Michael Klare, Bogdan Denitch, Luciana Castellina, Lynne Stewart, Manning Marable, Jason West, Suren Moodliar, Peter Gowan, Barbara Epstein, Doug Henwood, Frances Fox Piven, Gerald Horne, Rosa Clemente, William K. Tabb, Joel Rogers, David Harvey, Rose Brewer, Cindy Milstein, Leo Panitch, Christine A. Kelly, Barbara Garson, Christian Parenti, Stephen Eric Bronner, Michael Albert, MIchael Zweig, Maria Helena Moreira Alves, Frieder Otto Wolf, Michael Hardt, Stephen Duncombe, Eddie Yuen, Chris Dixon, Staughton Lynd, Richard Goldstein, Richard D. Wolff, Ward Morehouse, Victor Paredes, resisters and veterans of the War in Iraq, and many more...

Panels include: The Western Left and the Future of Iraq | Civil Rights in the Post-Affirmative Action Era | The Daniel Singer Prize | Why Americans Fall for the Ownership Society | The Middle East: States, Insurgencies, Islam, and the International Economy | The 2004 Elections: Progressive Responses | Class or Multitude? | Youth Organizing and Politics in the U.S. | Neoliberal Rollback: Social Security | Imperialism and the Domestic Agenda | The Left in Local Government: Kerala, Tuscany, Brazil, New York State | Building Alliances: Parties -- Movements -- Left Strategies | Hip Hop Politics Today | History Matters: The Past, Public Memory, and Resistance | Debtor Families, Debtor Nation | Insurgencies and the Limits of U.S. Imperial Reach | Ecology and the Left | Neoliberalism and National Strategies in Latin America | Dilemmas of the U.S. Peace Movement | and much more.

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