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Another World is Possible: Popular Alternatives to Globalization at the World Social Forum Paperback – Apr 19 2003

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Zed Books (April 19 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1842773291
  • ISBN-13: 978-1842773291
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 1.9 x 28.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 313 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #980,433 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

Review

"...a fascinating and valuable reflection of political reality."-Roger S. Gottlieb, Tikkun

About the Author

William Fisher is Director of IDCE (International Development, Community Planning and Environment) at Clark University, Massachusetts.

Thomas Ponniah is a PhD student at Clark University. He has completed a Masters Degree in Cultural Studies from the University of Birmingham in England. In 2002 he worked for five months as an intern with the World Social forum Secretariat.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This book extracts meaning from the chaos of tens of thousands of activists networking, planning, and uniting in Porto Alegre. Anyone who attended the World Social Forum or wishes she had attended will learn from this book why the Forum is so significant and why the Forum keeps growing and regenerating itself. The clearly presented themes help make sense of the Forum�what was said in Porto Alegre, why it matters to the world, and where we (social movements) may be heading.
I particularly liked the paper written by the World March of Women, in the subsection on Violence. The authors challenge the reader to see the culture of violence enforcing corporate globalization as a systemic extension of the �original form of violence�: violence against women. Violence is experienced by women in all parts of the world: �Paradoxically, whatever the circumstances or forms of violence we women have suffered, we feel ashamed and guilty� this is true in every part of the world � South and North, East and West� (p. 225). The authors remind the reader that the alternative, anti-capitalist globalization movement is nothing if it does not include women�s needs. The same, of course, could be said about the needs and visions of peasants, people of color, lesbian/gay/transgender, or any other marginalized peoples; if our collective movement does not include these needs, the movement means nothing. The challenge presented in this book is how do we create an effective, collective movement with these diverse strands of experiences?
This book is unique because it draws on documents from not just prominent activist individuals, but also from movements, networks, coalitions, and organizations.
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Format: Paperback
With the current war on terrorism underway here is a book that gives a venue to voices that are often silenced and ignored. Each year in Porto Alegre, Brazil, thousands of activists meet at the World Social Forum to exchange information, discuss challenges and plan social action to combat the neoliberal excrescences of globalisation (globo-colonisation). The book is essentially a compilation of the documents that emerged from the Forum in 2002 and as Fisher and Ponniah contend, it offers both a 'snapshot' of the left's perception of world affairs in 2002 and a deeper dialogue that lends a practical face to the desired alternatives to globalisation.
A key theme throughout is the collective call for 'the reinvention of democracy,' something that Fisher and Ponniah see as,
The reinvention of society such that the mode of economic production, the structures of political governance, the dissemination of scientific innovation, the organization of the media, social relations and the relationships between society and nature, are subjected to a radical, participatory and living democratic process (p 13).
This reinvention manifests itself in grassroots, bottom-up participation on an international scale both North and South and across lines of gender, sexual orientation, culture, and so on.
There is an impressive number of contributors and while they possess a shared general rejection of neoliberal economic policies they are also diverse in their responses towards combating the aggressive nature of globalisation. From radicalists to reformers, there are those who would abolish the multilateral lending institutions and there are those who would instead push for strong reforms within the existing international system.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa2a7f63c) out of 5 stars 3 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa29597ec) out of 5 stars A Great Reference Guide for the World Social Forum June 3 2003
By Alexander - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
With the current war on terrorism underway here is a book that gives a venue to voices that are often silenced and ignored. Each year in Porto Alegre, Brazil, thousands of activists meet at the World Social Forum to exchange information, discuss challenges and plan social action to combat the neoliberal excrescences of globalisation (globo-colonisation). The book is essentially a compilation of the documents that emerged from the Forum in 2002 and as Fisher and Ponniah contend, it offers both a `snapshot' of the left's perception of world affairs in 2002 and a deeper dialogue that lends a practical face to the desired alternatives to globalisation.
A key theme throughout is the collective call for `the reinvention of democracy,' something that Fisher and Ponniah see as,
The reinvention of society such that the mode of economic production, the structures of political governance, the dissemination of scientific innovation, the organization of the media, social relations and the relationships between society and nature, are subjected to a radical, participatory and living democratic process (p 13).
This reinvention manifests itself in grassroots, bottom-up participation on an international scale both North and South and across lines of gender, sexual orientation, culture, and so on.
There is an impressive number of contributors and while they possess a shared general rejection of neoliberal economic policies they are also diverse in their responses towards combating the aggressive nature of globalisation. From radicalists to reformers, there are those who would abolish the multilateral lending institutions and there are those who would instead push for strong reforms within the existing international system. The diverse backgrounds of the contributors result in some documents offering vague or general ideas while others offer detailed assessments and specific proposals. The central thesis is that neoliberal globalisation only serves to perpetuate and strengthen inequalities.
The book's four parts demonstrate the panorama of interests as held by the tens of thousands of World Social Forum participants. The general thrust of the book is apparent from the beginning with the declaration that "the market needs to be regulated and guided by the democratic control of the public" (p. 28). And this control is to be achieved by pursuing `new forms of participatory democracy,' `a new internationalism,' `a reconstitution the left,' and `the struggle against war.' From there, the book concentrates on ways and means of pursuing this desire, and in an interesting way it exposes the diversity in opinion within the left.
Such diversity is especially obvious when discussing issues of debt, trade, financial capital, transnational corporations, labour and solidarity economy. Some contributors call for a coordinated economic policy, functioning at the global level and with a central bank. Moreover, it is suggested that the US, Europe and Japan could perform this function as their responsibility to undertake this task results from their having "pressured the world into a system of brutal competition" (p. 89). Others support the idea of anti or deglobalisation, replacing imports with local production.
The second part disputes the capitalist held position that globalisation, with its `free' and `open' markets, is the natural alternative to communist regimes. Presented here are compelling arguments concerning the incompatibility between neoliberal policies and nature's renewability and non-sustainability and bankruptcy of the ruling world order. Not surprisingly, there is harsh criticism of the World Trade Organisation's Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs), with Oxfam UK drawing attention to the irony that, "all these rules will affect the lives of billions of people, yet until recently they have been introduced with minimal public debate" (p. 137). The documents in this part not only stress the impact and problems of TRIPs but also give detailed campaign strategies for combating negative affects.
Later parts expose issues such as the challenge of ensuring `the right to information' when confronted by the reality of international media monopolies, this in addition to covering a range of fascinating topics from the `hidden apartheid' of discrimination, migratory issues, expanding international sex industry, absence of global legal infrastructure for human rights, and the idea of a World Parliament. Near the end of the book James Petras gives a military definition of the current situation, underlining the thinking of many of the book's contributors. "In reality we are facing a situation of permanent warfare...We on the left have the capacity to intervene in the economic crisis if we make clear proposals" (pp. 299-300).
In summary, the book demonstrates the overarching shared ideologies of the contributors. This does not diminish the book's richness or utility, rather it brings together an invaluable collection of the left's perceptions and thinking with respect to offering alternatives to neoliberal globalisation. There is important reading for all those concerned with constructing economic models that serve society rather than vice versa. An editorial conclusion would make a welcome addition to future editions of this book. This edited volume provides a useful reference for those interested in the movement for global justice and solidarity.
Alexander I Gray, PhD
Marie Curie Researcher
Universidad de Deusto, Spain
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2959864) out of 5 stars A resource for movement Activists July 21 2003
By Kendra Fehrer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This book extracts meaning from the chaos of tens of thousands of activists networking, planning, and uniting in Porto Alegre. Anyone who attended the World Social Forum or wishes she had attended will learn from this book why the Forum is so significant and why the Forum keeps growing and regenerating itself. The clearly presented themes help make sense of the Forum�what was said in Porto Alegre, why it matters to the world, and where we (social movements) may be heading.
I particularly liked the paper written by the World March of Women, in the subsection on Violence. The authors challenge the reader to see the culture of violence enforcing corporate globalization as a systemic extension of the �original form of violence�: violence against women. Violence is experienced by women in all parts of the world: �Paradoxically, whatever the circumstances or forms of violence we women have suffered, we feel ashamed and guilty� this is true in every part of the world � South and North, East and West� (p. 225). The authors remind the reader that the alternative, anti-capitalist globalization movement is nothing if it does not include women�s needs. The same, of course, could be said about the needs and visions of peasants, people of color, lesbian/gay/transgender, or any other marginalized peoples; if our collective movement does not include these needs, the movement means nothing. The challenge presented in this book is how do we create an effective, collective movement with these diverse strands of experiences?
This book is unique because it draws on documents from not just prominent activist individuals, but also from movements, networks, coalitions, and organizations. People and groups such as National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights, India, the World March of Women, Oxfam UK, and the Economic Solidarity Group of Quebec present their collective documents alongside movement intellectuals like Vandana Shiva and
Walden Bello. The book is clearly post-capitalist, pro-movement and valuable reading for activists and academics alike.
1 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa295aa2c) out of 5 stars save a tree Feb. 10 2008
By J. Couture - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This 'utopian' one world socialist contract idea will find its way out the hind-end from where it was conceived. It is because of these socialist do-gooders that millions survive when they should be plant food. The only reason this irrational altruism has survived this long is because you will not allow kids to be taught to think..... to make up their own minds on what is real. People have lost the ability to use their minds..... the only way this parasite can survive is by government supported protection by gun-point ... it could never survive on its own merits....and won't


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