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VIDEO

Streamed live on International Manifesto Group, July 24, 2022:

Celebrating the release of Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro’s new book, a panel of experts discuss state socialism’s environmental legacy.
Among the many arguments used to dismiss the relevance Actually Existing Socialisms ecosocialist projects today is that they were ecological disasters. As the ecological crisis deepens, Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro’s Socialist States and the Environment argues that we need to return to the environmental practices and policies of Actually Existing Socialisms, since they had more environmentally beneficial than destructive effects. Rather than dismissing their heritage out of hand, we should reclaim them for contemporary ecosocialist ends. The ecological records of the USSR or China or Cuba have been ecologically constructive in critically important ways and looking at what worked and what did not is important to our ecosocialist future.
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About this event

Among the many arguments used to dismiss the relevance Actually Existing Socialisms ecosocialist projects today is that they were ecological disasters. As the ecological crisis deepens, Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro’s Socialist States and the Environment argues that we need to return to the environmental practices and policies of Actually Existing Socialisms, since they had more environmentally beneficial than destructive effects. Rather than dismissing their heritage out of hand, we should reclaim them for contemporary ecosocialist ends. The ecological records of the USSR or China or Cuba have been ecologically constructive in critically important ways and looking at what worked and what did not is important to our ecosocialist future.

Speakers

Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro is Professor at the Geography Department of SUNY New Paltz. He is the author of Socialist States and the Environment: Lessons for Ecosocialist Futures. His research includes critical physical geography, dialectical and historical materialism, gender-environment processes, socialism and environment, socialist histories, and soil acidification and contamination. He is chief editor for the journal Capitalism Nature Socialism.

Max Ajl is an associated researcher with the Tunisian Observatory for Food Sovereignty and the Environment and a postdoctoral fellow with the Rural Sociology Group at Wageningen University. He is the author of A People’s Green New Deal (2021). He has written for Monthly Review, Jacobin and Viewpoint. He has contributed to a number of journals, including the Journal of Peasant Studies, Review of African Political Economy and Globalizations, and is an associate editor at Agrarian South & Journal of Labor and Society.

Dimitri Lascaris is a lawyer, journalist, activist and a former candidate for the leadership of the Green Party of Canada. After graduating from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law in 1991, Dimitri began his legal career at the Wall Street law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell, first working from the firm’s New York offices and then joining the firm’s offices in Paris, France. While working at Sullivan & Cromwell, Dimitri represented large financial institutions, including Goldman Sachs, in connection with major securities offerings. One such offering was the sale to the public of Allstate Insurance Company which was, at the time, the largest initial public offering of stock in United States history. In 2004, Dimitri joined one of Canada’s leading class action law firms, Siskinds LLP. While at Siskinds, Dimitri co-founded and led Canada’s largest and most accomplished team of securities class action lawyers. From 2004 to 2016, the Siskinds securities class actions team recovered more than $450 million for aggrieved investors.

Ingo Schmidt is academic co-ordinator of the Labour Studies Program at Athabasca University, Canada. His research focuses on international political economy and labour movements. His recent books include Reading ‘Capital’ Today (Pluto, 2017), The Three Worlds of Social Democracy (Pluto, 2015) and Rosa Luxemburg’s Accumulation of Capital (VSA Verlag, 2013).

Peng Zhaochang taught at Rollins College in the US before going back to China and now working at Fudan University in Shanghai. He received his Ph.D. from UMass Amherst where Prof. David Kotz was his chief adviser.

Andrew Pendakis is an assistant professor of Theory and Rhetoric at Brock University and a research fellow at Shanghai University of Finance and Economics. His research focuses on contemporary political and economic culture, with a special interest in the genealogy of centrist reason in the West. Essays on Badiou, Heidegger and Sartre or on topics ranging from the new entrepreneurialism to dialectics, have appeared or are forthcoming in Criticism, Imaginations, Politics and Culture, South Atlantic Quarterly, and Mediations. He is also a coeditor of Contemporary Marxist Theory: A Reader on Bloomsbury Press. He is presently at work on a monograph entitled Critique of Centrist Reason.

Ipsita Chatterjee is an associate professor in the Department of Geography, University of North Texas. Chatterjee focuses on globalization, urban change, class, identity, labor, nature, Marxism, and feminism. Chatterjee has written three books: Displacement, Revolution, and the New Urban Condition (Sage) , Spectacular Cities: Religion, Landscape and the Dialectics of Globalization (Oxford), and her most recent book is titled: The Alt-Right Movement: Dissecting Racism, Patriarchy, and Anti-immigrant Xenophobia (Sage) won the Excellence in Book Production Award by the Federation of Indian Publishers in 2021. Chatterjee has also authored numerous articles in academic journals like, Urban Studies, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, Geoforum, Gender, Place and Culture among others.

Moderator

Radhika Desai is a Professor at the Department of Political Studies, and Director, Geopolitical Economy Research Group, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada. She is the author of Geopolitical Economy: After US Hegemony, Globalization and Empire (2013), Slouching Towards Ayodhya: From Congress to Hindutva in Indian Politics (2nd rev ed, 2004) and Intellectuals and Socialism: ‘Social Democrats’ and the Labour Party (1994), a New Statesman and Society Book of the Month, and editor or co-editor of Russia, Ukraine and Contemporary Imperialism, a special issue of International Critical Thought (2016), Theoretical Engagements in Geopolitical Economy (2015), Analytical Gains from Geopolitical Economy (2015), Revitalizing Marxist Theory for Today’s Capitalism (2010) and Developmental and Cultural Nationalisms (2009).

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