The Platypus Affiliated Society at Loyola presents:
Women: The Longest Revolution
Wednesday Nov. 4th at 6pm
Regis Hall Multi-Purpose Room
North Shore Campus
Named for Juliet Mitchell’s 1966 essay, this panel will explore the long history of the struggle for women’s liberation from the vantage point of the Left today. Mitchell critiques bourgeois feminist demands such as the right to work and equal pay to posit the need instead for equal work. She calls for a politics capable of taking on the fundamental transformation of society and more immediate demands “in a single critique of the whole of women’s situation.” In keeping with the spirit of this essay, we ask again what the relationship might be between the struggle for social emancipation and the particular tasks of feminism. How have Leftists imagined this relationship historically? What do we make of it today?
While the “woman question” has played an important role in the history of the Left, its knee-jerk inclusion in current Leftist politics does not necessarily reflect a greater understanding of what the struggle for women’s liberation might mean politically. How exactly is it “the longest revolution?” When did it begin? If the crisis of bourgeois society in the industrial revolution posed the need for women’s freedom as inseparable from the project of human emancipation, then what do we make of the later separation of the feminist movement from the workers’ movement for socialism? What do the seeming successes of feminism tell us when considered in relation to the failure of the proletarian struggle to deepen/realize the task of human freedom?
For more information on our activities in Chicago and around the world, go to: http://platypus1917.org/
Held at Loyola University on April 15, 2015.
-- David Mountain (London, UK)
-- Jocelyn Li (Halifax, Canada)
-- Sebastian Vetter (Vienna, Austria)
-- Shirin Hagner (Frankfurt, Germany)
While the academy is more liberal than the American mainstream, economic pressures, such as declining opportunities to succeed on the job market, have led to a general depoliticization of the recent generation, the “millennials.” In Europe, on the other hand, the academy still appears as a hotbed of student radicalism: occupations of university buildings across Europe in 2009, demonstrations in UK universities in 2010 to resist tuition hikes and spending cuts, and various protests calling for more democracy and less austerity throughout Europe, but particularly in Greece and Spain.
The Platypus Affiliated Society presents a round-table discussion with student activists from Europe and Canada who will share their views on recent protest movements in their countries. What issues have been prominent? What has been the relationship between student movements and traditional agents of social change, such as labor unions and social democratic or socialist parties? In the past, professors such as Herbert Marcuse played a significant role in radicalizing protesters. Whom do student activists regard today as sources of intellectual and political inspiration, and what does this influence look like?
We invite local students to share their own experiences with these international representatives, and to discuss the possibilities for a re-politicized student body in the United States.
Sponsored by the Loyola University Student Activities Fund, with the support of Loyola's Student Activities and Greek Affairs.
A panel discussion held at Loyola University on April 3rd, 2014.
Tarek Shalaby (Revolutionary Socialists)
Quentin Cyr (Quebec Student Strike)
Glauk Tahiri (VETEVENDOSJE! movement)
Respondent: Samir Gandesha
Moderator: Nathan Smith
From massive demonstrations by students in the UK and Canada, to square occupations and general strikes in Greece, to the reemergence of Left political currents in Kosovo in response to waves of privatization and austerity, responses to the economic downturn were international in character. While the crisis has stabilized, conditions for many remain desperate. The fate of these new political movements in light of changed conditions is uncertain.
These new developments require coordination across global networks and it is why Platypus at Loyola is organizing a series of international panels that we hope can take place in Universities across the world where Platypus student members have been able to forge connections.
We hope that this panel will be an opportunity to report on activity and form new connections across international efforts. Panelists will report on the state of the Left in their respected regions and reflect on their experience as organizers while helping formulate what the next steps in organizing and planning could look like in the months and years ahead.
A moderated panel discussion hosted by the Platypus Affiliated Society on the interrelation of capital, history and ecology, held at Loyola University on November 19th, 2013.
- Franklin Dmitryev (News and Letters) Author of "Ecosocialism and Marx's Humanism"
- Fred Magdoff (University of Vermont) Author of "What Every Environmentalist Needs to Know About Capitalism"
- Steven Vogel (Denison University) Author of "Against Nature: The Concept of Nature in Critical Theory"
- Alice Weinreb (Loyola University) Author of the forthcoming "Modern Hungers: Food, War and Germany in the Twentieth Century"
The Dutch atmospheric chemist Paul Crutzen recently characterized the period marked by the start of the industrial revolution in the 18th Century to the present as a new geological epoch, the Anthropocene. This periodization is meant to capture a change in the history of the planet, namely that for the first time in history its course will be determined by the question of what humanity will become.
This panel will focus on different interpretations of why the Left has failed to deal with the deepening crisis of the Anthropocene through the 19th and 20th Centuries and how and if this problem is interrelated with the growing problems associated with ecological systems across the earth. While Karl Marx would note that the problem of freedom shifted with the industrial revolution and the emergence of the working class - the crisis of bourgeois society that Marx would term capital - the idea of freedom seemed not to survive the collapse of Marxist politics in the 20th Century. We seem to live in a world in which the fate of ecological systems seem foreclosed, where attempts at eco-modernization seem to emerge many steps behind the rate of ecological degradation. For many, degradation of the environment appears a permanent feature of modern society, something which can only be resisted but never transformed.
This panel will consider the relationship between the history of capital and the Left—and thus the issue of history and freedom - and how it may be linked to our present inability to render environmental threats and degradation visible and comprehensible, and by extension, subject to its conscious and free overcoming by society.
In October, the Platypus Review published it's fiftieth issue. In celebration of this landmark occasion, at the issue No. 50 release party held in New York City on November 15, 2012, an international video conference with the members of the current and past editorial staff of the Platypus Review was held, including speakers involved with the Platypus Review from New York City and Chicago, USA, London, UK, Thessaloniki, Greece, Maastricht, the Netherlands, Frankfurt, Germany, and Graz, Austria.