Municipal Goverment

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

Montreal, the second largest city in Canada, has a robust history of left-wing organizing and mobilization at the municipal level, both through electoral and non-electoral means. This panel seeks to examine the successful practices and the strategic shortcomings of the municipalist Left in Montreal, by focusing on two main dimensions. We would first pay attention to left-wing municipal parties (the Front d’Action Politique from 1969 to 1973, the Rassemblement des Citoyens de Montréal from 1974 to 2001 and Projet Montréal from 2004 to today) and the numerous drawbacks and tensions that they faced in the last five decades, both regarding internal democracy and their links to extra-parliamentary left-wing organizations. We would then take a look at an ongoing mobilization campaign against the gentrification of Park Extension, a low-income neighborhood in the North West of Montreal, and the ways in which this campaign has integrated community-campus collaboration as a strategy for popular empowerment and social change. Our broader aim is to identify a set of practical insights that can contribute to mobilizing efforts in other cities, while helping the Left to face the turbulent times ahead of us.