Varieties of Socialism week

Center for Global Justice presents:

Short course on "19th Century Communitarian Societies" with Dr. Joan Roelofs.
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 10:00am to 12:00.
Center for Global Justice, #42 Calzada de la Luz
200 pesos for all 4 sessions

January 19 Tuesday 1:00pm Teatro Santa Ana
Film: Inequality for All

January 20 Wednesday 11:00am Sala Quetzal
Panel: Varieties of Socialism -- Cliff DuRand, Arturo Yarish and Joan Roelofs
(watch video here)

January 21 Thursday 1:00 Teatro Santa Ana
Film: The American Ruling Class


***** 10:00-12:00 Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday *****

While the U.S. is a very individualistic society today, that was not always the case.  Historically there have been strong communitarian movements and even today there are many inspiring examples of communities coming together in cooperation to deal with problems such as natural disasters or hunger or homelessness.  Dr. Joan Roelofs will help us retrieve some of this communitarian heritage in a short course "19th Century Communitarian Societies."  The Center for Global Justice is sponsoring the week long course from January 18 to 22.

Dr. Roelofs is a retired professor of Political Science who has written extensively about alternative social thought and practice.  Her course will explore the 19th century Shakers, Hutterites, Oneida Community, Brook Farm and others.  Why did people decide to live communally?  What were the religious and socialist inspirations?  Why did the communitarian movement eventually fade?  Are their lessons for the problems of this day and age?  This illustrated course will open your eyes to an often neglected part of our past.

**** 1:00pm Tuesday ****

Economic inequality has always been a key feature of capitalism.  But it is now becoming increasingly clear to many that today's growing massive inequality threatens to destroy capitalism itself.  Former Clinton administration Labor Secretary Robert Reich presents a passionate argument on behalf of the middle class in his film "Inequality for All."  He demonstrates how the widening income gap has a devastating impact on the US economy, threatening the viability of the workforce and the foundation of democracy itself.  ` In this inconvenient truth for the economy, Reich uses humor and a wide array of facts to explain why the U.S. ranks a lowly 64th on the inequality scale among the world's nations—only slightly better than the Ivory Coast and Cameroon.  (A little gossip:  Reich vacationed in San Miguel last month and said he loved our town.)

**** 11:00am Wednesday ****

Bernie Sanders has put the word "socialism" into our current political discourse.  Other candidates and the media want to ignore his 'democratic socialism".  However, his rallies are drawing huge numbers of young people (and others) who are not afraid of the 'S' word.  But what does it mean?  A Global Justice panel will explore "Varieties of Socialism."  Is it the New Deal?  Or public ownership of the means of production or just an activist government promoting the common welfare?  Is it publically owned facilities?  Or is it cooperatives or even communal living?  Whatever it is, the billionaire class is afraid of it.

**** 1:00pm Thursday ****

Then we wrap up the week with a lighter yet serious film about what Occupy has dubbed the 1%.  Former Harpers Magazine editor Lewis Lapham wrote "The American Ruling Class," a film about the elite that makes the big decisions in the country.  Whether there is a ruling class in the United States used to be a controversial question in a country that prides itself on being democratic.  But since the financial crisis of 2008, the powers that be have become visible to all.  Goldman Sachs, the Koch brothers and their ilk can now be seen pulling the strings, both economically and politically.  Directed by John Kirby, "The American Ruling Class" is a highly entertaining dramatic documentary musical (how's that for a rare combination).  It "explores our country's most taboo topic: class, power and privilege in our nominally democratic republic."  Serving as an oddly Vincent Price-like master of ceremonies, Lapham sends two fictional Yale grads on a series of interviews, some candid and some staged, with such power brokers as former secretary of State James Baker as well as progressive icons, such as Howard Zinn, filmmaker Robert Altman, Barbara Ehrenreich, Kurt Vonnegut, and Pete Seeger.  This is a morality tale about power, its responsibilities and abuses.


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commented 2016-09-20 03:07:08 -0500 · Flag
Education help us to be receptive about the marginalized people of our traditions and education give us bravery and strong point to do impressive for such people and identify them as a measurement of our background.
commented 2016-06-30 03:37:01 -0500 · Flag
It was a nice week. The course was great. Dr. Roelofs is a great guy and he was so prepared – I was impressed, to say the least. I hope that I will have the chance to participate in his other lectures. Great job!

Sophia from