Opposing terror – article and slides

Following the presentation and lively discussion at the Taking Soundings event on 3.12.15, here are the slides that Max Farrar showed (with a couple extra ones added in at the end)

Islamist terror-dilemmas PDF

The article on which the talk was based was published by openDemocracy on 3.12.15 and is available here

Islamist terror: some dilemmas for the left in countering Islamism AND Islamophobia (3 Dec)

We’ve had to postpone the advertised talk on 3rd December with Dr Katy Shaw. Please accept our apologies.  Instead we offer this talk:

Islamist terror: some dilemmas for the left in countering Islamism AND Islamophobia

With Max Farrar, Emeritus Professor at Leeds Beckett University

6pm Thursday 3rd December in Leeds Beckett University’s Broadcasting Place BPAG10 (on Woodhouse Lane, opposite the Fenton, Leeds LS2 3ED, UK)

After 13th November’s atrocities in Paris, with global elites increasingly turning their dreams to a military solution to the ‘existential threat’ posed by terrorism that claims an Islamic Caliphate as its goal, leftists find themselves in a quandary. How to oppose this simplistic militarism — explaining that alienation, caused by the depredations of capitalism combined with the West’s effort to bomb an ideology out of existence, is the real problem to be addressed — while agreeing with those elites that the violent jihadi strain of Islam is utterly inimical to everything we stand for? Max Farrar will make suggestions on how the left can oppose violent Islamism without contributing to Islamophobia.  This talk is based on this article in openDemocracy by Max Farrar and Rumana Hashem and will refer to the threats made on Rumana’s life by Bangladeshi Islamists.

Max Farrar is a sociologist and Emeritus Professor at Leeds Beckett University. He is a committee member of Taking Soundings, secretary to the charity RememberOluwale and a Board member of Together for Peace and UK Friends of Abraham’s Path. His PhD thesis about black-led and multi-ethnic social movements in Chapeltown, Leeds, was published at The Struggle for ‘Community’ (Edwin Mellen, 2002). His more recent work on multiculturalism and Islamism appeared in Farrar, Robinson, Valli and Wetherly (ends) Islam in the West (Palgrave 2012). More here

ALL WELCOME.  FREE, but a collection will be taken.

Reclaim Modernity – launch on 11 Nov (in London, natch)

We received this from Compass and we thought you might want to check it out . . .

Political life can often feel pretty bleak for all the reasons you know and feel so well. And then something pops up and rekindles the flame of hope.This new Compass publication, Reclaim Modernity, by Mark Fisher and Jeremy Gilbert ignites a towering inferno of hope. It does so by calmly and clearly explaining that we are in a unique moment of history. The way the world is developing can be in tune with our values. We don’t have to fear modernity, or capitulate to it. It doesn’t have to be the acceleration of everything that’s bad about the present. It could actually be better.

Reclaim Modernity helps us understand why the bureaucratic state always had its limits and the free market was never going to be the antidote. Instead, we have to help co-create a democratic state. It may not be immediately obvious how to do that – but it’s the only way things will work for most of us, most of the time.

It is the best bit of big thinking anyone has published for some time. I can’t implore you enough to download here.

Reading it will lift the dark clouds.

Better still come and hear Mark and Jeremy, Hilary Wainwright, Neal Lawson and Angela McRobbie talk about it at the launch event with Red Pepper on Tuesday 11th November in the House of Commons. Click here to secure your place.

My best,

Zoe Williams