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The Rise of the Global Left; The World Social Forum and Beyond

by Boaventura de Sousa Santos - £26.99  Zed Books Ltd. (2006)
paperback    ISBN 13: 9781842778012 | ISBN 10: 1842778013

Leading sociologist Boaventura de Sousa Santos makes an impassioned case for the politicisation of the World Social Forum, arguing that its full potential as a force for social, economic and political change can be achieved only by taking a stand against neo-liberal globalization, war, famine and corruption. However, since its inception in Porto Alegre in 2001, the World Social Forum has refused to adopt political positions on world events, preferring instead to provide a platform that facilitates cooperation between diverse social movements. Through a detailed analysis of the WSF's history and organization, he demonstrates that it has always been an inherently political organization, and argues that if the WSF is able to realise its potential as an institution for a new form of politics, it will become a global power to be reckoned with in the 21st century.
Introduction - Forty Years of Solitude and the Novelty of the World Social Forum
Chapter 1 - The World Social Forum as Critical Utopia
Chapter 2 - The World Social Forum as Epistemology of the South
2.1 The World Social Forum and the Sociology of Absences
2.2 The World Social Forum and the Sociology of Emergences
Chapter 3 - The World Social Forum as an Insurgent Cosmopolitan Politics
3.1 The Struggles for Global Social Justice must be based on a very Broad Conception of Power and Oppression
3. 2 Counter-hegemonic Globalization is built upon the Equivalence between the Principles of Equality and Recognition of Difference
3. 3 Rebellion and Non-conformity must be privileged to the Detriment of the Old Strategic Options (Reform or Revolution)
3. 4 The WSF aims at a New Internationalism
3.5 The WSF Process Progresses as Transversal Political Terrains of Resistance and Alternative are Identified as an Ongoing Process
3.6 The Struggle for Radical Democracy must be a Struggle for Demodiversity
3.7 Transcultural Criteria must be developed to identify Different Forms of Democracy and to establish Hierarchies among them according to the Collective Quality of Life they provide
3.8 The WSF Process must be conceived as promoting and strengthening Counter-hegemonic Forms of High-intensity Democracy already emerging
3.9 There is no Democracy without Conditions of Democracy
3.10 There is no Global Social Justice without Global Cognitive Justice
3.11 The many Names of Another Possible World - Social Emancipation, Socialism, Dignity, etc. - are in the End the Name of Democracy Without End
Chapter 4 - Organizing fragmented counter-hegemonic energies
4.1 Internal Democracy: the Relations between the Organizing Committee and the International Council
4.2 Transparency and Hierarchies in Participation
4.3 Parties and Movements
4.4 Size and Continuity
4.5 The New Organizational Challenges: the Evaluation of the 2003 WSF
4.6 The New organizational Models: the Mumbai Demonstration and the 2005 WSF
4.7 The 2006 Polycentric WSF
Chapter 5 - Representing this World as it fights for Another Possible World
5.1 Whom does the WSF Represent?
5.2 Who Represents the WSF? Composition and Functionality of the International Council
Chapter 6 - Making and Unmaking Cleavages: Strategy and Political Action
6.1 Reform or Revolution
6.2 Socialism or Social Emancipation
6.3 The State as Enemy or Potential Ally
6.4 National or Global Struggles
6.5 Direct or Institutional Action
6.6 The Principle of Equality or the Principle of Respect for Difference
6.7 The WSF as a Space or as a Movement
Chapter 7 - The Future of the World Social Forum: Self-democracy and the Work of Translation
7.1 Self-democracy
7.2 The Work of Translation
Chapter 8 - The World Social Forum and Self-learning: The Popular University of the Social Movements
8.1 A Proposal for Collective Transfor

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In categories: Politics & Philosophy, Changing the World, Anti-Capitalism & Global Inequality,

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