People and Planet First

Naomi Klein’s Press Statement at the Vatican, This Changes Everything, July 1, 2015

And now we are confronted with the reality that we were never the master, never that boss—and that we are unleashing natural forces that are far more powerful than even our most ingenious machines. We can save ourselves, but only if we let go of the myth of dominance and mastery and learn to work with nature—respecting and harnessing its intrinsic capacity for renewal and regeneration.
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How to Select the Next UN Secretary-General

By Ngaire Woods and Nina Hall, Project Syndicate, May 4, 2015

When the United Nations elects a new secretary-general next year, the world will face a crucial choice. With crises erupting in every region of the world, the need for strong, decisive leadership is self-evident. And yet the selection process for filling important international posts has often been characterized more by political horse-trading than a meritocratic search for the best candidate.
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Theories of Oppression and Another Dialogue of Cultures

An Ambedkar Memorial Lecture delivered by Ashis Nandy at Ambedkar University, Delhi, on April 14, 2012

All dialogues have to cross borders – cultural, political and, above all, psychological. Usually these borders are thought of as international or civilisational borders. When we cross these borders, we are supposed to get a new, deeper, more empathetic understanding of the other ways of looking at the world and at ourselves. There is an implicit assumption in this proposal, particularly when it involves crossing the borders within us. Others are never entirely strangers. They are also templates of the temptations and possibilities within us. We are what we are because we are shaped by the seductive pulls of these templates. A dialogue breaks stereotypes more easily than it erases these partly alien fragments of our self, operating as anti-selves and rejected selves. Both our creativity and destructiveness depend upon how we grapple with these inner vectors. It is thus that a dialogue sharpens and widens our awareness of what we are and what we are capable of.

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Blue Labour: Forging a New Politics

Edited by: Ian Geary, Adrian Pabst
Foreword by: Rowan Williams

In the aftermath of the global economic crisis, and the worst recession for over seventy years, Britain has witnessed one of the most turbulent eras in politics since the Second World War. The dominant political and capitalistic system has come under close scrutiny; and the 2008 financial crash has cast serious doubt on the economic and social liberalism of both Thatcherism and Blairism. The Blue Labour movement addresses the fact that neither nationalisation nor privatisation has delivered lasting prosperity or stability. Critiquing the dominance in Britain of a social-cultural liberalism linked to the left and a free-market liberalism associated with the right, Blue Labour blends a 'progressive' commitment to greater economic equality with a more 'conservative' disposition emphasising personal loyalty, family, community and locality. Seeking to move beyond the centrist pragmatism of Blair and Cameron, this essential work speaks to the needs of diverse people and communities across the country. It is the programme of a vital new force in politics: one that could define the thinking of the next generation and beyond.

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Learn to Live without Masters

An Interview with Slavoj Žižek taken by Oscar Guardiola-Rivera, Naked Punch, October 3, 2009

1. Getting Rid of the Big Other.

OGR: It seems as if, in the end, your philosophical and political project is to break through the various impasses of extrinsic vs. intrinsic accounts of everything, from cinema to science and politics, without playing to the gallery of hysterics who want you to give them ‘the new law’. That would explain why your discourse (and your practice) cannot simply follow the conventions of the discourse of the university. Put otherwise, is this what you are getting at when you state that the task is ‘to get rid of the Big other’ in all its forms (including that of the ‘organic intellectual’)?

SZ: It was already Jacques-Alain Miller who elaborated the idea that democracy involves a kind of destitution of the big Other, with direct reference to Claude Lefort: “Is ‘democracy’ a master-signifier? Without any doubt. It is the master-signifier which says that there is no master-signifier, at least not a master-signifier which would stand alone, that every master-signifier has to insert itself wisely among others. Democracy is Lacan’s big S of the barred A, which says: I am the signifier of the fact that Other has a hole, or that it doesn’t exist.”
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On UN Charter Day, Ban Calls for ‘Deeper Cooperation’ amid Growing Global Challenges

26 June 2015 – On June 26th, 1945, the United Nations was born from the ashes and rubble of the Second World War as delegates from fifty nations came together to sign the UN Charter – the Organization's founding document and the bedrock of global peace and development.

Seventy years later, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is returning to San Francisco where the Charter was first signed to celebrate the UN's founding and call on the international community to renew their commitment towards the shaping of a better planetary future for all.
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Yevgeny Primakov Has Died Aged 85

The Moscow Headquarters of the WPF “Dialogue of Civilizations” and Russian Society of Political Scientists regret to inform that Yevgeny Primakov, Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Honorable Professor of the Moscow State Lomonosov University, Honorable President of the Russian Society of Political Scientists died on June 26, 2015 in Moscow at the age of 85.

Yevgeny Primakov was a politician, public figure, and diplomat. He was one of Russia’s leading experts in oriental studies and a prominent scholar in the fields of the global economy and international relations. Mr Primakov contributed a lot to the development of the Political Science and supported the consolidation of the political expert community in Russia.

Women and the Interpretation of Islamic Sources

An Essay by Heba Raouf Ezzat, Professor of Political Theory, Department of Political Science, Cairo University, published at heba-ezzat.com

Can a feminist reinterpretation of Islamic sources be set in the context of Islamic theology? In other words: Can there be a feminist interpretation of Quran and Sunna? Was there one in the past, and if not…can we initiate one in the future?

These questions have appeared on the agenda of women’s debates in the Muslim world in the past two decades…stressing the “feminist” as different…currently absent and…urgently needed.
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Chaos and Counterrevolution

After the Arab Spring

A new book by Richard Falk, Just World Books, 2015

In 2011, an extraordinary popular protest movement swept North Africa and the Middle East. Mass demonstrations and public protests inspired a new generation to imagine a future without authoritarian rule. Yet, just a few short years later this sense of hope and possibility has largely given way to gloom and pessimism. In this unique collection of blog posts and essays, renowned international law scholar Richard Falk explores the political situations in the region, including Egypt, Libya, Syria, Turkey, Iran, and Iraq, pairing his reflections on developments as they unfolded with analysis of events today.

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