Session 1: Saturday, June 2nd: 10:00 - 11:50am
The exploitation and austerity imposed by capitalism has triggered protests and movements from Egypt, Greece, and France to Ferguson, Baltimore and now West Virginia in the U.S. But these struggles met their limits and dissipated or were channeled back into the system. Nowhere has the working class provided an independent, let alone revolutionary, perspective to current struggles. Many of those seeking revolutionary change have turned away from the working class as the revolutionary model of the 21st century, claiming that the proletariat, its workers’ councils, the revolutionary party, and the socialist program have are no longer necessary, and that we need a new political approach. We disagree with this perspective. The potential and necessity of the working class to once again provide a leadership to struggles that challenge the status quo is just as true today as it ever was. But it is important to carry out regular revolutionary activity in the working class and not to simply wait around for periods of mass upheaval. Come to a presentation and discussion of our perspectives and efforts in both France and the U.S. for building a revolutionary organization in the working class today, and hear about our concrete experience organizing and participating in the recent railroad workers’ strikes and the student movement against austerity in France.