Oct. 4: Alliance of Radical Academic/Intellectual Organizations (NYC)

Yoshie Furuhashi furuhashi.1 at osu.edu
Mon Jul 21 20:46:36 MDT 2003


*****   Date: Mon, 21 Jul 2003 20:03:16 -0400 (EDT)
From: Bfoley29 at aol.com
Subject: conference call to left academics; important
To: mlg-ics at andrew.cmu.edu

hi mlg-ics friends--

those of you who were at the summer institute were apprised of the
upcoming conference for radical intellectuals/academics in NYC this
october.  at the initiative of the mla radical caucus, a group of
left academics--members of active or potential radical caucuses in
the different professional associations as well as representatives
from left journals--has decided to try to pull together a
coalition/communication network that will facilitate our political
work.  please read the appended statement and consider whether either
you yourself or someone else from any radical academic/intellectual
collective to which you may belong might be able to attend this
(possibly) very important gathering.

best to all,

barbara foley

p.s. it would be good if a discussion over email could take place
that would enable mlg-ics to decide whether or not we'd officially
want to join.

CALL FOR FOUNDING MEETING

Alliance of Radical Academic/Intellectual Organizations
October 4, 2003, in New York City

The Alliance of Radical Academic/Intellectual Organizations invites
all collectives, caucuses, and organizations--i.e., all groups
working in, around, in spite of institutions of higher education--and
whose members are in agreement with the principles in the draft
Statement of Purpose (see at end)--to participate in a founding
meeting of the organization on October 4, 2003, in New York City, at
a location to be announced. Final decisions regarding the statement
of purpose, name, and activities of the organization will be based on
discussions at the founding meeting itself, including whether the
organization is to be a loose alliance to communicate and coordinate
activities or an organization that will initiate projects and actions
on its own.

GOALS OF THE FOUNDING MEETING

+ To create an organizational structure to facilitate the
coordination and communication among member organizations for action
around the following themes:

* The Empire
* The fiscal crisis
* Repression of civil liberties

+ To discuss and propose strategies for the following:

* Action in the academic arena
* Support of research bodies and think tanks to present new
alternatives for public debate, with an impact on policy and public
opinion.

PRELIMINARY AGENDA

* Opening Remarks
* Group Presentations/Reports and Discussions of Themes and Strategies
* Breakout into possible Task Force groups for proposals
* Proposals and decisions: statement of purpose, organizational
structure, and actions

PARTICIPANTS INVITED TO ATTEND

* Delegates chosen by academic collectives, caucuses, and
organizations in and around higher education to represent their group
formally, including groups publishing radical scholarly academic
journals, radical caucuses organizing and already within unions,
radical caucuses within academic disciplinary and professional
organizations, and other sites where political/ intellectual work
takes place.
* Individuals from such groups interested in bringing proposals back
to their organizations
* Individuals interested in organizing such groups in their
academic/intellectual areas

ORGANIZERS OF THE ALLIANCE

We are radical scholars and intellectuals. Many of us are
activist-scholars and activist-intellectuals who work in non-academic
settings. Some of us are veterans of the sixties, and some of us are
younger; all of us are active participants in today's new movements.
In 2002-2003, we came together in the streets, the teach-ins, the
academic associations and elsewhere in opposition to the "war on
terrorism" and to the war-related fiscal crisis in higher education
and across the economy; we oppose the governmental lies that brought
the U.S. into the war, and we oppose U.S. imperialism and the
emerging U.S. empire. We are deeply concerned about growing
repression and, in particular, its impact on critical thought and
expression.

BACKGROUND

An initial meeting of the Alliance, called by the Radical Caucus of
the Modern Language Association, was held on April 19, 2003, at the
City University of New York Graduate Center. A steering committee of
volunteers was charged with the task of preparing a draft Statement
of Purpose and of organizing a Founding Meeting for fall, 2003. The
Steering Committee members participating in these tasks include the
following:

Betsy Bowman, Radical Philosophy Association
Barbara Foley, Radical Caucus of the Modern Language Association
Patricia Keeton, Radical Caucus of the Modern Language Association
Jesse Lemisch, Historians Against the War
Yusuf Nuruddin, Brecht Forum, Research Group on Socialism and Democracy
Andor Skotnes, Radical History Review and Historians Against the War

More than 25 people affiliated with radical academic and intellectual
organizations attended the initial April 19 meeting, including
members of the following groups:

* Radical Caucus of the Modern Language Association
* Radical Philosophy Association
* Radical History Review
* Historians Against the War
* New Political Science
* Brecht Forum
* Research Group on Socialism and Democracy
* Latin American Studies Association
* North American Congress on Latin America (NACLA) collective and journal
* Professional Staff Congress union of CUNY
* Union of Radical Political Economics
* Working Class special interest group, Conference on College
Composition and Communication
* Caucus on Class of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies

REGISTRATION AND INFORMATION

To obtain more information or to register for the meeting, please
email the following: AllianceAcademic at hotmail.com

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE (DRAFT)

The Alliance of Radical Academic/Intellectual Organizations is a
network of educational collectives and caucuses --brought together by
the conjuncture of the "war on terrorism"; the degradation of the
economy exacerbated by, but not totally attributable to, the war;
growing repression; and privatization and de-funding of higher
education. The goals of the Alliance are to support the work of
individual caucuses and organizations through the establishment of a
national and possibly international organization and, through this,
to facilitate and coordinate activities on a larger regional,
national, and international basis in response to these developments.
The types of scholarly and intellectual groupings in the Alliance are
diverse, including radical caucuses in academic disciplinary and
professional organizations; organizations publishing radical
scholarly academic journals; radical caucuses of faculty,
professionals, and graduate students both organizing and already
within unions. The Alliance invites such organizations--as well as
those who would like to organize new groups--to join this network.
While member groups are diverse in type, all affirm the following two
principles:

First, members of the Alliance--as members of scholarly and
intellectual groups organized around radical principles--recognize
that social and economic inequalities are built into the structure of
capitalist society. We also believe that inequalities of power come
in many other forms: racism, sexism, ethnocentrism, xenophobia,
bigotry, and discrimination based on age, ethnicity, physical
ability, sexual orientation, creed, and native language. Alliance
members oppose all these forms of oppression and exploitation.

Second, members of the Alliance commit themselves to the principle of
activism, with priority to activism within the educational sector
because this is where Alliance members are concentrated. We are all
activists, and we affirm the dignity and value of intellectual work.
We seek to build a better society, free of the bigotries and
inequalities mentioned above, in which the passion for knowledge will
flourish. We believe that activism, as well as teaching, research and
writing have an important role to play in bringing about a just and
humane society. We want to establish institutional and societal
conditions that will encourage analytic and critical thought as well
as foster the full development of human potential and creativity. To
these ends we seek to build and be part of a re-born left.   *****
--
Yoshie

* Calendars of Events in Columbus:
<http://www.osu.edu/students/sif/calendar.html>,
<http://www.freepress.org/calendar.php>, & <http://www.cpanews.org/>
* Student International Forum: <http://www.osu.edu/students/sif/>
* Committee for Justice in Palestine: <http://www.osudivest.org/>
* Al-Awda-Ohio: <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Al-Awda-Ohio>
* Solidarity: <http://solidarity.igc.org/>



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