Bennholdt-Thomson, Veronika, Nicholas Faraclas and Claudia Von Werlhof, eds. There is an Alternative: Subsistence and Worldwide Resistance to Corporate Globalization. Zed Books Ltd. London, UK. 2001.

Every once in awhile, involvement in the struggle becomes overwhelming, and an activist needs to recharge, and to remember what drew them into the movement at the start. One way to do this is to read a book that combines cutting analysis with alternatives and hope. There is an Alternative: Subsistence and Worldwide Resistance to Corporate Globalization is such a book There is an Alternative is an anthology of essays by academics and activists paying tribute to the important work of German scholar and activist, Maria Mies. Mies is widely respected Read more [...]

Filed under Book Reviews, Claudia Von Werlhof, Nicholas Faraclas, Veronika Bennholdt-Thomson

Bello, Walden. Deglobalization: Ideas for a New Economy 2002. Zed Books Ltd. London, UK and New York, USA. Fernwood Publishing, Halifax, N.S. Canada.

Victorians had the rare chance to hear Walden Bello discuss his thoughtful and constructive theories about globalization and the new global democracy movement at the Small World Social Forum in November. The New Internationalist magazine says,” Clear analysis and impressive scholarship have made Bello on of Asia's key progressive thinkers.” In Deglobalization, Bello explains the crisis of legitimacy in the institutions and actions of global financial powers – the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the World Trade Organization Read more [...]

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Behrangi, Samad. THE LITTLE BLACK FISH. Iranbooks USA.

When the Afghan MP, Malalai Joya, quoted from this book during her talk in Victoria, I looked for it and found it the youth section of the library. On one level it is a simple & vivid story of a brave and adventuresome fish; but given the political repression in Iran and the author’s politics and the circumstances around his early death in a drowning ‘accident’s, it can also be read as a political allegory. The Little Black Fish shows that it is impossible to completely suppress expression and resistance; the brave and creative will Read more [...]

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Bechara, Soha. Resistance: My Life for Lebanon 2003. Soft Skull Press. USA.

I found this book in a small radical bookshop in Saskatoon this summer, just as the invasion of Lebanon ended with a ceasefire after incredible death and damage had been wreaked in a few days. I know little about this country and even less about Lebanese women so I bought it with interest. And I learned a lot about Lebanon and its political history. What I also found was a very intimate story of a bright young woman from happy Lebanese family with a Christian mother and a Communist father and how she became a member of a secret resistance group, Read more [...]

Filed under Book Reviews, Soha Bechara

Barta, Armando, editor. Profound Rivers of Mesoamerica: Alternatives to Plan Puebla Panama. 3rd Edition. Mexican Solidarity Network.

This is a collection of essays, research and reports on ‘development’ as it affects the people who have to live with it and who had little to say about it. Plan Puebla Panama (PPP) is intended to be privatized, globalized economic development of a vast area from Mexico, through Central America to Panama that will only benefit capital and its collaborators. Many of the writers explain the details of this scheme and the anticipated social, economic and environmental results of such a neoliberal model – a plan that would among other effects, Read more [...]

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Baroud, Ramzy. My Father Was a Freedom Fighter: Gaza’s Untold Story. 2010. Pluto Press, London, UK.

Ramzy Baroud is the founder and editor of www.palestinechronicle.com an online news service and he has written several books about Palestine. This new book is the story of just one man, not famous or particularly special — only special in that he is Ramzy´s father and that through the story of his life, the tragedy of Gaza is revealed. He was probably born in 1938 to poor farmers in the village of Beit Daras in Palestine, (see: www.palestineremembered.com) a village with a long history and important archaeological sites NE of Gaza City. Read more [...]

Filed under Book Reviews, Ramzy Baroud

Baroud, Ramzy. THE SECOND PALESTINIAN INTIFADA: a Chronicle of a People´s Struggle. 2006. Pluto Press, London, UK.

This book fulfills its title´s promise; it is an informative, engrossing, readable and moving history; a chronicle in the best sense of a period and place for which we have had little news or analysis that is not filtered by the aggressors of Palestine and their friends worldwide. In their foreword, Kathleen and Bill Christison write that, “The Palestinian—Israeli conflict has gone beyond being a mere political problem, beyond the stuff of cool debate. It is a human disaster that can no longer be treated with dispassion… The Israeli Read more [...]

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Barndt, Deborah, editor. Wild Fire: Art as Activism 2006. Sumach Press, Toronto, Canada.

The title of this anthology of mainly young activist women from an academic discipline intrigued me right away. I often think of art & activism, sometimes connected, sometimes separate. But Art as Activism implies a relationship of deeper integration. The twenty–one contributors have been graduate students of the editor; in this anthology they express their creativity as activism – a process that reaches out to the community to participate in social transformation. In her introduction the editor, Deborah Barndt of the Faculty of Environmental Read more [...]

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Barlow, Maude and Tony Clarke. BLUE GOLD: The Fight to Stop the Corporate Theft of the World’s Water 2002. The New Press. USA

"Although world water supplies are dwindling and transnational corporations are working hard to reap substantial profits from that scarce resource, it is not too late to turn the situation around" This quote sums up the authors' overview of the diminishing global supply of a resource most of us take for granted. But as new frontiers for capitalist expansion shrink and disappear, politically and geographically, the corporate world has turned in recent decades to the privatization of the commons and making commodities out of lifeÂ’s necessities. Read more [...]

Filed under Book Reviews, Maud Barlow, Tony Clarke

Barghouti, Omar. BDS: BOYCOTT, DIVESTMENT, SANCTIONS: The Global Struggle for Palestinian Rights. 2011. Haymarket Books, USA

“The BDS campaign is among the most important forms of such ´resolute struggle´ by the great majority of Palestinians, who resist the colonization of their land and minds and demand nothing less than self–determination, freedom, justice and unmitigated equality…” Barghouti is one of the new generation Palestinian activists, grounded in the life of a people under siege and understanding the importance of social movements and global solidarity. He writes that Palestinians through social movements have surpassed their leadership and have Read more [...]

Filed under Book Reviews, Omar Barghouti

Barghouti, Mourid. MIDNIGHT AND OTHER POEMS. 2008. Arc Publications. UK

“We have to be precise. Creative writing is a critical process” Except for his memoir, most of this poet´s works are not published in English. This is a first – a gift to English–only readers – a major collection of Barghouti´s poetry (it also prints the Arabic original on the opposite pages.) Midnight, 142 pages long, is a story in a poem of a prisoner, the story of loss, displacement and loneliness. The poem of one who seems to have only poetry left. What makes it poetry is the leanness of language, the precision that rejects Read more [...]

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Barghouti, Mourid. I Saw Ramallah Translated from the Arabic by Ahdaf Soueif. 2000. Anchor Books, Random House. USA and Canada.

In his introduction to this beautiful memoir the late Edward Said says: what gives this book an unmistakeable stamp of profound authenticity is its life-affirming poetic texture . This is no surprise as Barghouti is indeed a poet of great sensitivity, he is the author of nine books of poetry; few of his poems are translated into English. For us in the English-speaking minority world, the idea that there is a body of Palestinian literature is probably as remote and unbelievable as the idea that there is a land and history of a country called Read more [...]

Filed under Book Reviews, Mourid Barghouti