The period of transition between our current capitalist economic and social system and a socialist economy is a very controversial subject among socialists. Maintaining an active dialogue and critique of this period is absolutely critical to our strategic and tactical understanding of how to achieve a socialist society. Nothing springs from the naked void fully formed1. We need to examine the best avenues open to us for changing our current social direction into a society we would like to bring into existence.
Capitalism is like a hot ember placed on a flammable object – the fire consumes the body in patches and gulps, some areas taking longer to catch, some areas exploding with flame and some areas quickly charred and brought to heel. Yet capitalism smouldered for a long period before catching fire. An economic, social and political regime can appear to remain stagnant while an apparent marginal economic activity moves towards dominance and finally erupts. Capitalism, which was once a marginal approach to economic activity, exploded onto the scene of history with dynamic force; a force which in a few centuries almost completely eliminated feudalism. A theory of social change will have to take into account the conditions which allow new social systems to ignite. It must also recognise that societies can exist in an admixture of various different economic systems. For this reason studying the entrance of capitalism onto the political scene is deeply important. Its genesis can give us clues to its demise.
This talk was billed as follows: “Manuel Castells, University Professor and Wallis Annenberg Chair in Communication Technology and Society, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, will speak on a theme related to his recent book Networks of Outrage and Hope; Social Movements in the Internet Age (Polity Press), with further elaboration in relation to the recent movements in Brazil and Turkey.”
Movement internationalism(s) (deadline May 1 2014)
The pedagogical practices of social movements (extended deadline December 1 2013)
Interface flyer for distribution We’ve (finally) done up a flyer for Interface. If you’d like to help us out, please download it (755k), print off a few and leave them around somewhere that interested people might see them (or stick one up on a noticeboard, or…) The flyer has great artwork by Rydell and isn’t looking for money or members. You can download it here. Thanks!