Held April 5th at the University of Chicago, as part of the 11th Annual Platypus International Convention.
Victor Cova, Aarhus University (Aarhus)
Andreas Wintersperger, University of Vienna (Vienna)
Jan Schroeder, Goethe University (Frankfurt)
Panos Didachos, Panteion University (Athens)
Padraig Maguire, Goldsmiths University (London)
What is the mean EU for the Left today? Does the Left believe the EU should be overcome on the basis of the EU itself, or against the EU? How can the Left address the current crisis of the EU, with the aim of overcoming capitalism and achieving socialism, when the political expression of its crisis has largely come from the Right? The clarification of the EU’s nature and appropriate responses seem to be one of the most pressing issues for the Left on the continent and beyond.
Held April 4th, 2019 at the University of Chicago, as part of the 11th Annual International Conference of the Platypus Affiliated Society.
- John Abbott, Professor of History, University of Illinois at Chicago
- Robert Bird, Professor of Slavic Languages and Literature, University of Chicago
- John Bachtell, Chairman of the Communist Party USA
- Patrick M. Quinn, founding member of Solidarity
- Earl Silbar, Students for a Democratic Society (Chicago 1968), member of Fox Valley Citizens for Peace and Justice
1989 is largely remembered as a decisive close to the Cold War contest between communism and capitalism—with the victory of the latter casting a seemingly damning verdict against Marxism as a form of politics. The planned economies based on collectivized property of these states wereindicted as failures, and their totalitarian regimes called into question the very notion of working class rule. The fall of communism thus profoundly affected the Left’s ability to imagine the overcoming of capitalism, and the possibility of a classless society beyond it. But in passing into history, the meaning of 1989 can also be reconsidered. The Platypus Affiliated Society wants to use this anniversary to reassess the question of how 1989 weighs on the present. What is the significance of 1989 in its historical context, and what is its relevance for Left politics today?